Thursday, August 19, 2010

Emerging Technology

According to Jonny Evans, who blogs at Computer World, three companies are defining the future of publishing: Amazon, Google and Apple. He starts by saying, “Apple is reinventing the electronic planet.”

Evans points out that other eReaders are moving toward the iPad model.
 Barnes and Noble today introduced new versions of its Nook-branded eReading software for the iPad, iPhone and iPod touch. Nook is also available for PC and Android systems.

The free app joins Amazon's own Kindle app, Apple's own iBooks app, both Marvel and DC's big comic-reading apps and a bevy of smaller eBook-reading apps on the iTunes store.
Apple will soon be selling 7-inch iPads, in fact. They’re designed primarily for text books and will appeal to schools. Apple is also extending its presence to new markets overseas.

Other companies are introducing new ideas. Nook has a LendMe feature, another step in eBook publishing.

While Evans noted:
Amazon recently claimed to have sold more eBooks than physical books, but few took this claim seriously -- the company is clearly pushing its own Kindle device.
He also said:
 Random House CEO, Markus Dohle expects eBooks to make up over 10 percent of the publisher's revenue by next year.
You can link over to see what Evans recommends the Kindle do to compete with the iPad and what the rumors are concerning the Android Kindle. What do you predict for the Book eWorld?


  1. I think, sadly, the eventual end of bookstores as we know them. I was in a bunch of Barnes and Noble stores for my tour and one of the managers said that the store was moving toward an Apple store model--with Nooks and their accessories prominently displayed.

    But the important thing is that books, in whatever form, continue being sold!

  2. I think eReaders will have to take on more features because soon who will want a device that only reads books?
    I read an article this morning about the iPad. By the end of the year, there will be other devices to compete with Apple, but they will be late to market. With no competition right now, the iPad has sold close to 4 million units. (And we contributed to that number!)

  3. I hadn't thought of using the iPads and e-readers for textbooks, but I love the idea. I know they mean mostly college, but I'd love to see this utilized in high school. Aside from letting kids carry around expensive iPads, I think it would save schools money in the end. That is the most exciting part to me.

    I still don't have a Kindle or anything, but I've really thought about it lately as the fibro pain gets worse in my hands. As much as it kills me, I just can't hold the heavy books for as long anymore!

    Always the latest news, Helen. Thanks.

    Contest today on SouthernCityMysteries

  4. Just here in my area I've found readers are more popular with seniors (60-90+) because of adjustable font and light weight.
    Kids from 9 to mid 20's love them and would gladly use them for school for much the same reason as seniors
    Folks in the middle are the ones who seem less adaptable to the change.
    I visit senior centers weekly; there are 2 universities and 3 satellite campuses in my town and I am active in the school system so this is not scientific by any means.

  5. My significant other, a big tech monkey, has been enthralled with the kindle for a while now but the area in which we live doesn't have any kindle coverage. However, he now has the android kindle on his phone and seems to be liking that.

    This whole thing doesn't seem to bode well for bookstores as we know them but I agree with whoever said that the important thing is that books continue to be sold.

  6. This is very interesting. Makes a writer wonder what our world will look like in a couple of years. All we can do it keep writing and hope for the best. :)

  7. Personally, I like a device that only reads books. It's just like, oh, I don't know...reading a book? I don't want to be distracted by a bunch of bells and whistles. I much prefer my Kindle to Hubby's iPad.

    I think text books in ebook form will eventually be a huge market because of the ability to make notes and highlight on the document itself (plus the cost savings).

  8. Amazon has not been forthright with their numbers, so I'm nor surprised many do not take their claims seriously. Makes sense they might do this to promote their Kindle. Thanks for the updates.

    Stephen Tremp

  9. Elizabeth, I've read that, also.

    Alex, we contributed also.

    Michele, both of my kids are out of high school, but I remember the days when they would head out with ultra heavy backpacks. I would love to see textbooks in e-form to reduce the back pain, even though I know now kids are using pull bags.

    Mary, sometimes first-hand experience is better than stats.

    I agree Haleine. Sell books, one way or the other.

    Laurita, one thing about the iPad which can do more than hold books is that it can do Internet, GPS, etc. This week, it's been great for me. My computer crashed, again, and has been in the shop since Sunday. I can use my husband's iPad to check the blog and comment and do things that I need to do. It's not as easy or fast as a computer since the typing is slower (for me), but it's sure been useful.

  10. I continue to be a holdout and don't own an e-reader. I'm old school that way and like my books just fine. I imagine if books go the way of the dinosaur, I won't have a choice in the matter. Until then...(Hugs)Indigo

  11. I don't have an e-reader yet, but I probably will eventually cave in. I just hope real paper books never go away completely. I love them so much.

  12. I have always thought that textbooks would be the big driver of ebook reader usage. Has anybody been reading the comic strip Zits this week? Jeremy's textbook load for the new year caused his van to list to one side. Today he finds his locker is too small for all his books. Why shouldn't rtext books be put on ereaders? Think of all that can be added to the text. Better graphics, video, sound. Instead of reading about a lab experiment, students can view it. One big casualty will be calculator manufacturers because the calculators are available right on the iPad.

  13. I think ereaders or computers will eventually eliminate text books. Kids will be able to access appropriate links and images right through the text. It would eliminate a lot of paper and make it easier to carry those packsacks :)

  14. Count me in with those who favor e-readers for textbooks. My kids backpacks got ridiculously heavy. And now, in college, the textbooks are upwards of $100 each and then for the most part useless when the semester is over.

  15. I think the future for e-book readers is wide open. There will be lots of people like me who want to primarily read books, while others are wanting all kinds of features outside of reading books. What is cool is that technology will be able to give us all of that and probably more. Now if we could just get a universal text platform that would allow easy access to books from all types of e-readers.

  16. Apple has an interesting approach with its closed architecture. In the early days of personal computing, they donated a lot of Apple computers to schools, carving out a substantial niche for themselves. Now if they can coax publishers to put textbooks on iPads, that would have a major impact on students, university bookstores. Students wouldn't easily be able to share or resell their used textbooks, and you can bet prices for e-versions would approach those for the physical books. Despite all that, e-textbooks are probably coming and will be a net plus for students.

    I own both a Kindle and an iPad, and I like them both. But when I read an e-book on the iPad, I'm still using the Kindle app. I've looked at a sample book on the iPad app, and have to say it's cuter than Kindle, but the content is the same. I am not going to download a book through the iPad app, which by the way has its own pricing structure for e-books, because I can't read one on my Kindle.

    All right, I think this may be getting confusing. My bottom line is that the market for e-books will grow tremendously; brick-and-mortar bookstores will suffer but the strongest will survive; and that Kindle and iPad will thrive.

  17. Mark, I totally agree about textbooks, but hadn't thought about calculators.

    I second that, Maryann!

    Bob, I don't think my DH has tried the kindle app, but he does use the B&N app on his iPad, along with the iStore.

  18. We now have an I-pod Touch in our house, which as far as I can tell, other than size and downloading capability, is pretty comparable to an I-Pad...and I'm finally beginning to understand the appeal!

  19. Another convert! Welcome, Liza.

  20. I would LOVE to see middle and high schools adopt the model. I personally can't seem to absorb from a screen, but had I learned to do it that way, that would be different. I can barely lift my kids' backpacks.

    I think, too it would help with the COST of textbooks, as a huge reason they are so expensive is the small print runs--these will be more efficient to update and make the latest available.

    For personal use though, I am holding out until they have one that is waterproof.

  21. I predict standardisation.
    (crossing fingers)

  22. I hope you're right, Lynda. I'm hoping for that as well.

  23. I think everyone is hoping for standardisation, but I'm certain there'll be no co-operation between the digital giants. When I can put on a pair of sunglasses and tap the frame to read the latest best seller, then I'll be happy.

    In digital there are so many options for advertising and sponsorship that I can't believe someone hasn't thought about this. It will increase profits for everyone.

  24. Hi Helen

    I found your blog through Susan says.

    It's a timely blog you write - I've just prepared my first novel and sent it to an E-publisher. And I've sent it to them before I go the 'traditional' route of finding an agent. Something tells me this is the way to go with this particular novel so I'm completely with you on the future of 'books.'
    I think we have to embrace all change and progress.

    Good to make your aquaintance.
    warm wishes

  25. With all this talk of text books it's interesting to note that the big Kindle DX experiment with several universities was a big flop. The students did not care for their textbooks in digital form, at least not with the state of the software. It was too hard to take notes and highlight text.

    Both those features are supported on the DX, but the menu system used to accesses them is kludgy and caused much frustration. Hopefully improvements in user interfaces will solve this problem - I expect it's already better on the iPad.

    As to me, I'm holding out for an iPad type device with the Android OS. I refuse for buy into the closed Apple ecosystem.


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