Doesn't this stuff exist already?
About a month ago on a train out of London I saw a guy using what appeared to be an A4 kindle, but he was annotating the documents on it using its touchscreen. Anyone know what this might have been?
Amazon is just days away from busting out a new large-screen Kindle e-reader designed to better replicate old-media newspapers, magazines, and textbooks. The New York Times was first to report a jumbo Kindle arriving as early as this week, citing "people briefed on on the online retailer's plans." Amazon has since scheduled a …
Quote: Textbook publishers may also get in the big e-reader racket by banking on college students' oh-so solid reputation for purchasing their digital media legally.
This is not about digital media. Textbooks != digital media.
95%+ of textbooks are bought only for a year or two until the course is over and the exam is taken. After that they are resold.
If the publishers are brave enough to offer the digital editions time limited and correctly priced towards the market expectations (cost to buy minus sale price 1 year later) this will fly. In fact a networked e-reader with its build-in DRM is the perfect media for that. If they go the knee-jerk way and try to offer it at "bookshelf" prices this is dead on arrival.
You likely saw a reader by iRex. A bigger Kindle better have a touchscreen too. It would be useless for textbooks otherwise. Can't wait for the next generations of readers, they've become really interesting. Publishers need to think up some incentives, like significantly lower prices, regular free updates and the like. I still think it would be best to receive a free digital copy along with the printed matter.
Gimme gimme gimme.
Text books are huge and an absolute pain to move around, with a decent cost saving to offset the lack of resale ability I could see students loving these. To be honest though portability is pretty much what I love about eBooks especially when travelling where I can read a lot and who wants to carry 4-5 paperbacks in their bag?
It is awesome that there is another, larger screen, Kindle coming out. It is pretty exciting that Amazon is putting a ton of effort into revolutionizing and popularize eBooks.
If they properly take care of tables, graphics, annotations, that would make this a very powerful tool for textbooks. The impact on traditional newspaper is less clear, unless Kindle can have a very low price point.
Anyway, I don't have a Kindle but checked one out from a friend. The screen is very neat and unlike most standard back-lit LCDs. If you get a chance, check it out. It's VERY cool.
On the note about Amazon, thanks to PC World, I came across an interesting table that shows Amazon’s discounts in various categories.
It is at http://www.uberi.com
Maybe someone will find it useful too, or at least somewhat amusing...
I think the publishing houses need to get together and agree a portable format for all ebooks if they don't want to hand control of their business over to Amazon & Sony.
Just imagine what would have happened in the 1920s if Marconi had made 60 rpm gramophones and Bush had made 80 rpm ones.
We just lived through the vhs/betamax wars, the triumph of blueray over h-dvd. A lot of programme providers got badly burned backing the wrong horse. Has the book market not been watching?
Thanks for the article. In common with other commenters, I am very keen on an e-book reader, but it must be DRM free, and WIFI is a must. The publishers need to realise that their business model will change too, much as the music cartels are finding. Good luck with all that. Corporate greed and ignorance will prevent any of this coming to pass.
Plastic Logic's been vapourware until this very day, passing their own deadlines and dripfeeding the media actual information without rehashing old claims.
Until it's out, which might simply be never, I'm still going to wait for the iliad to get a little cheaper. The kindle's too much of a lock-in product, but cheap, the iliad an all purpose digital reader with touch screen and full OS access, but for 699 euro.
In the choice between a kindle and an iliad at the moment, I'm going with the laptop I already have and a printer. 700 euro buys me a lot of ink and paper.
I don't know about everyone else, but I find that a good, old-fashioned, dead tree edition thumps the shit out of a digital version for useability when it comes to reference materials.
I find that skimming and flicking through a printed index is infinitely more likely to find me what I'm looking for than relying on someone else to have thought to link topic x to topic y. Also an on-screen index just doesn't give that ability to take the whole thing in at a glance and have the potentially related items jump out at me. I've no idea why.
The thing that really pisses me off about the dash to e-publishing is the one thing it's bound to do is drive up the price of the more useful printed version.....
Why DRM free? It appears to me this is one of the only areas where DRM would be applicable/workable. You have a reader, you buy the content. It goes on the reader. Why would you need it any where else? (unless your reader needs replacement - and that is some thing that could be worked out). It's not like music/video where you may want to have multiple devices on which you want to use the media. You would only need one reader. Ok, so you cannot have a second hand market, but if the original cost is only about the cost of second hand book at the moment (say, £1-£2 for a paperback), then you may as well buy new. Seems to me that is the publishers get this right, it a win-win situation for all.
I agree about WiFi.
Remember, the book industry is NOT the music or film industry. It's a very different world. Much less cocaine to pay for, for starters. The margins are much lower, the costs of generation are lower, but the costs of the media are higher, and use up a lot of trees.
Once the readers get good enough and the prices are acceptable, I'm up for it.
'I think the publishing houses need to get together and agree a portable format for all ebooks if they don't want to hand control of their business over to Amazon & Sony.'
There is an agreed standard called ePub which is supported on most current eBook readers and reader software. In a complete break with the rest of the company Sony support it on their readers and it works very well.
Amazon do not support ePub and tie you into the Kindle infrastructure.
I remember using old technology from last century to read – the Palm m505 with the “Documents To Go” application that let you sync it to your laptop and download stuff like e-novels and stuff like that. Formatting was always a bit of a pain but it worked, could be popped into your pocket and the battery lasted days at a time.
Ten years on I can’t wait to see the 3-D holographic book that this new stuff must surely do…