Posts tagged ‘ipad’

Holiday season cheer for publishing outsourcing with meteoric rise in demand for e-book services

There has been quite a brouhaha over the impact of tablets and e-book readers in our lives over the past couple of years. With the iPad series being the clear front-runners, the other game-changers are Amazon’s Kindle series and the Nook by Barnes & Noble. All the potential talk over how these will have a massive influence on media, marketing and publishing is explained by the fact that Amazon and Barnes & Noble have each decided to put another 4-5 million tablets each into the market in 2012.

This holiday season, consumers are looking at buying and gifting another transformational format for the media and entertainment industry – the e-book. With the foundation being built slowly over the past two years, the e-book industry is now unleashing its full marketing potential to convince tablet owners to make the “digital switch” from traditional hard covers and paperbacks to its electronic form. Amazon and B&N have already established their proprietary e-book formats and dozens of other publishers are getting on-board to digitize their output.

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Device specific formats are horrible to support, and I hope they die!

Commented a respondent of our survey on ‘The Current State of Digital Content’. So,  how are things shaping up for digital formats, does everyone in the publishing industry feel the same way? Read on.

Changing the ‘format’ of content

The publishing industry has progressively been going digital. While selling digital contentpublishingsurvey1 is recent, publishers have used digital production techniques/processes that are reliable, stable and efficient. Such processes, however, ended mostly in the creation of PDFs – that doubled as print ready files and/or a product that was to be sold digitally.

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Why isn’t the corporate learning community excited about the iPad?

Through much discussion and debate, the Apple iPad seems toslide13_learningtogopo_10a7 have held its own, when it came to university implementation. Whether the goal was to enhance campus communication, replace textbooks, introduce new learning approaches in the classroom, or promote informal learning, the iPad seems to have clicked with higher education, in the first quarter of its release. We’re hearing of more and more faculty/depts. experimenting with ways to leverage the technology to suit their varied learning requirements, be it at law schools, medical schools, engineering students, or business related content/app development.

So what was the reaction from the corporate learning segment? Here’s a couple of noteworthy initiatives that have reached mainstream online discussion.

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Education at $35… Dreaming big?

The comparisons between Apple iPad and this $35 ‘still unnamed’ mobile device are so unfair. The online buzz about this new product is almost deafening. Ever since the Indian government announced the launch of the ‘$35 m -device’ (lets call it that, since it does not have a name yet, and this anyway seems to be the most exciting ‘fact’ about it), discussions abound on its viability, price, wasted funds, its not-so-successful predecessors, apps that it can offer and its future. While debate on all of these is justified, some more thoughts:

Why is cost such a big issue?

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Apple iPad: Loved it!

The iPad is still making the news – a search on Google News for the keyword ‘iPad’ returned close to 19,000 articles for the last month alone. The iPad, since its launch 80 days ago, has already sold three million units and shows no sign of slowing down. Like it’s other products, Apple has managed to create a strong market buzz for the iPad.

Recently, I had the chance to get my hands on an iPad – and I was impressed. The few minutes I had with the device left me appreciating the effort Apple has put into the device. The interface, driven by a touch screen, is remarkably easy to use and it makes it all the easier to access the web or play games. But what really caught my eye was the e-book experience. The book (if I remember correctly, the free copy of Winnie the Pooh), looked great – so great that I can imagine myself using it for all my reading. I can’t help but wonder if more like me are considering the switch?

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iPad: m-learning at its best or worst?

Much has been said about m-learning, and the technology fueled future… rich with possibilities for the next generation of student learners. And that we are now entering a phase where we can peek into that future, through emerging technologies. Apple can be termed the big daddy in this race, the mover and shaker who challenges our perceptions of what technology can do for us, with innovations abound, come every MacWorld. In this post, I’d like to talk about where m-learning is heading, using Apple’s latest contribution to the mobile computing world – the iPad.

As early as the January unveiling of the iPad, the e-learning blogosphere has been buzzing with the possibilities that the device presented for learning, both at the corporate and the school/university level. I would say that post the initial excitement, the ground realities really sunk in. Innovative? Yes. Made things interesting? Yes. But recommend as a formal learning tool? Not so sure. Why the hesitation to a device that was designed to really ‘push the boundaries’ according to the maker?

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Will the iPad help the publishing industry?

For an industry that has been questioning the way it has been functioning for the past decade, the publishing industry seems to be rejuvenated with the potential of the digital market. While publishers look to overcome the decline of print by developing digital market as a revenue source, it becomes even more important to have the right vision while addressing it.  Venturing into potentially unchartered waters, require the publishers to adopt a steep learning curve that means not only operating like a Net company but also creating a strong value proposition.

A significant section of publishers addressing the digital market have relied on partners. Right from producing books, adapting them to various devices or distributing them to readers, publishers have seen the merits of depending on partners. Take for example the Apple iPad. Publishers look at this piece of gadgetry with the same glee that the music industry did when the iPod was released. Some have gone to the extent of proclaiming the iPad as the backlit beacon of hope for the publishing industry. I do not think so!

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Reading into the device market…

The e-book market is still hazy at best, and the influx of e-book readers is not helping publishers and readers.  To get a better sense of how many e-book readers are out there, I did a Google News search. There are close to 1500 articles from the start of this year – an indicator of the flurry of activity that the device space has seen. (In all fairness, a significant proportion of them might be from Apple and the iPad). I am  amazed at how many e-book readers are already out there or are due for launch. Many gadget companies have already started looking at this space and are accordingly launching their products. I have listed a few of the e-book readers that I have come across. (Do let me know if I missed any)

Amazon Kindle, Sony Reader, Barnes and N0ble Nook, Apple iPad, Plastic Logic, InfiMedia Pi, Asus, Lenovo, Acer, Samsung, Neonode, BeBook, Spring Design Alex, Aluratek Libre, Yinlips, Teclast K3, Oppo Enjoy, Hanlin, Cube, iRiver, Interead Cool-er, Elonex, Bookeen Cybook Opus, Onyx BOOX, QuokkaPad, Hanvon, IREX, Copia

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