They won’t come right out and say it, but a recent price cut on the Nook Tablet family can only mean one thing, Nexus 7’s are back in stock. The Barnes and Noble devices aren’t even close to being the best Android tablet option out there these days, however for those invested in the B&N platform they are still a very capable device. Additionally, if reading is going to be your primary use for a tablet, these budget devices will fit the bill quite nicely.
Print media hasn't fared super well in the face of digital distribution. Turns out, a lot of people prefer live pixels to dead trees. So what's a company like Barnes & Noble -- with serious cash invested in both brick-and-mortar stores and the digital Nook ecosystem -- supposed to do in this new era of reading? The answer, apparently, lies in spinning off the Nook into an entirely new subsidiary company -- and giving Microsoft a 17.6 percent stake in the fresh venture. B&N did just that this morning.
Publishers are more than a little squeamish about ebooks, and lending ebooks doubly so. With that in mind, it’s not really a surprise that Penguin Books has decided to pull its content from OverDrive, the lending system used by over 7,500 libraries in the U.S.. Penguin previously removed its titles, only to bring them back a few days later. This time, however, the change is looking to be permanent.
Amazon is usually light on details when discussing Kindle sales, but this time we’ve been granted a bit more data on the holiday season. According to Amazon, the online retailer moved 4 million Kindle devices in the month of December. Additionally, eBook gifting shot up 175%. After all, you can’t give a Kindle without including a few books.
Amazon has always been coy when it come to releasing sales numbers, and the case of the new Kindle Fire is no exception. But if the newest leak is to be believed, someone working for the company is a little less secretive. A spreadsheet detailing the pre-orders to this point shows some incredible numbers. In just five days, over 250,000 Kindle Fires have been ordered.
Is that the sound of Tap being played off in the distance? It appears that despite seeking debt restructuring and filing for bankruptcy was not enough to save Borders from its fate. The chain is closing up shop, taking all its remaining 399 stores with it. 11,000 employees are expected to be out of work.
Amazon's Kindle wasn't the first e-reader on the market, but it's continuing the Amazon tradition of shattering sales paradigms – Amazon announced today that it now sells more Kindle e-books than traditional print books.
Amazon reports that since April 1st, the company has sold 105 e-books for every 100 print books. That's not including all the free downloads of public domain books, either. It's not surprising when you consider just how ubiquitous the Kindle's become in just four years – even if you don't have an actual Kindle, you can read Kindle books using the Kindle app that's available for many mobile devices.
Usually, if someone went around offering you a new Kindle for $25 under retail, you'd look at them slyly and wonder where they stole it from. But in the case of Target and Best Buy stores, they're going to be selling the cheaper Kindle starting May 3rd because it is ad-supported. On-screen ads may lower the price by $25, but will users accept that?
What’s interesting about the shift from an industrial age to a technological age is that we keep inventing new media: movies, records, radio, television, the internet, and now ebooks—and one of the things that’s most interesting about the invention of a new medium is watching it reinvent itself as it penetrates the culture.
In the study of mass communication, we see that a new medium always starts out building on the formats of preexisting media. A couple quick examples:
As movies grew up, especially in the first decade of sound, they went to novels and broadway plays for source material. (They still do. In fact, now they go to comics and TV shows too for ‘inspiration.’)
As radio spread, radio stations went to records and concerts for material to broadcast. Radio networks also went to vaudeville for performers and made stars out of Jack Benny, Fred Allen, George Burns, and others. (This is what killed vaudeville. You could stay home and listen to live performances.) Eventually radio started doing drama, mysteries, soap operas, game shows, and sitcoms.
When television began, it modeled itself after radio.
For more about what technology's history says about ebooks' future, read on!
When the Kindle first launched, you could only pick one up from Amazon.com itself. In the last year or so, Amazon has smartly expanded into brick and mortar retail chains. Now the Kindle will be available in yet another place, AT&T Wireless stores. As you may or may not be aware, the global 3G radio in the Kindle uses AT&T's network in the US.