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Archives: November 2010

How Are You Using Your iPad?

MediaBistro took a survey today to find out how readers are using their iPads. It turns out that people are using their iPads for all kinds of things. They use it to check e-mail, play games, surf the Web, watch Netflix, cook, work, and of course for reading.

Here are a couple of notable responses:

Robyn Andrews posted: “I use it for surfing, email, games, and reading (kindle for iPad). I referred to a recipe on it during thanksgiving-fit right on the windowsill. It’s really handy because the battery is decent and it’s lighter than a laptop. doesn’t get as hot, either. :-)

Susan Kelley posted: “Getting ours in the next week or two, we’ll use it for business primarily (we have an online store), but we’ll also use it for online magazines & newspapers, etc. (I’m guessing there may also be some Angry Birds activity.)”

Jackie Taylor posted: “I bought one this weekend for my husband. He uses it to organize his class notes and as an e-reader. It’s also great for entertainment – watching movies on Netflix online.”

To read more and to share your iPad story, follow this link.

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eChook Turns Apps Into Chapbooks

Author Tessa Smith McGovern has launched a new series of eReader apps for short story reading called eChook.

Based on the 16th century notion of the chapbook –a small single chapter book—the apps include digital short stories based on a specific theme that can be read in 10 minutes. McGovern had this statement: “Life-affirming, thoughtful stories can help us relax so we can attend that next meeting, collect the kids or greet our families with more energy and joy.”

One such app is called London Road: Linked Stories and includes a number of short stories about London. It costs $3.99 in the App Store.

Authors are invited to submit short stories for consideration until December 1st. Stories must be uplifting memoirs, 750-2000 words, and should be able to read in 10 minutes. For more information on how to submit, follow this link.

Andy Hunter on iPad Publishing

In our Media Beat interview this week, Electric Literature co-founder Andy Hunter explored the literary journal’s newest venture, Electric Publisher–a licensed iPad and iPhone app platform for indie publishers and authors.

Hunter will be one of many guests at Mediabistro’s eBook Summit on December 15th, talking about practical iPad solutions for writers and publishers. The complete interview is embedded above. Stay tuned tomorrow for the final installment.

Part One: Andy Hunter on the Future of the Literary Journal

Are Travel Guides Better Suited To Print?

Despite the light-weight features of an eReader or the fact that your mobile phone/eReader might already be in your pocket, Associated Press writer Anick Jesdanun argues that print makes for a better travel guide than an eBook. On a 10 day trip to Germany, equipped with both a Kindle edition Lonely Planet guide and a print version, the write found the print version easier to use.

In a piece, entitled “Paper wins over e-book for this traveler,” Jesdanun argues that print beat out eBooks because they are easier to flip through and contain more detailed information.

Here is an excerpt from the piece: “Holding the paper version, I simply kept my thumb on one page and a finger on another to flip back and forth between the narrative and the deeper descriptions. The map was either on the same page or just one page away. With the Kindle, I had to hit ‘next page’ and ‘prev page’ repeatedly, and the pages took their sweet time to turn, because the “electronic ink” technology of the screen doesn’t respond as fast as a computer screen. Out of frustration, I flicked a switch to turn the device off instead. E-ink also means scrolling and zooming doesn’t work well.”

Perhaps another eReader like Nook Color or the iPad would have made for a better experience. Do you think travel guides are better suited for print?

Digital Helps B&N Drive Sales in Q2

Barnes & Noble saw $1.9 billion in total sales in the second quarter of 2010 including sales from Barnes & Noble College Booksellers.  Excluding College, total sales increased 1% over the prior year period.

This growth was driven by digital sales. Comparable sales at Barnes & increased 59% driven by increases in core products and sales of digital devices and digital content.  Barnes & Noble comparable store sales decreased by 3.3% and College’s comparable store sales decreased by 1.5%.

The company has spent a lot of money developing the NOOKcolor, as well as adding content to its digital library, but the company expects to see some of this investment pay off in the second half of last year.

Washington Irving Christmas Sketchbook Is Free eBook Today

Today’s Free eBook of the Day is Old Christmas from the Sketch Book of Washington Irving.

The collection of sketches and stories should help get anyone in the mood for the holiday season. Here is an excerpt: “There is something in the very season of the year that gives a charm to the festivity of Christmas. At other times we derive a great portion of our pleasures from the mere beauties of nature.”

Google Books has the free download.

For more free eBooks, check out our Free eBook of the Day Archive.

Will Readers Come Around To eBooks This Year?

It is no surprise that people love books. We’ve read them for thousands of years and they feel pretty good to the touch and smell. Still, no matter how much you love the printed word, eBooks have gotten pretty nice to look at and the recent development in eReaders are making them more pleasurable to read. This year may finally be the year of the eReader.

eBooks are incredibly convenient for book lovers that like to travel without the extra weight, or for those urban dwellers in small spaces that read a lot more books than they can house.

LA Times reporter Michael Hiltzik has an op-ed this week, in which he recounts how he got over his fear of eBooks and bought a Kindle, something he never thought he’d do. Here is an excerpt from the piece: “There’s something liberating about a good e-reader. A large part of it is the ability to buy a book and have it delivered (by Wi-Fi or 3-G network) within a minute. There’s no question that I’ve bought more books, and read more, than I did in any equivalent pre-Kindle period. The two leading e-book merchants, Amazon and Barnes & Noble, allow you to download a free sample of any e-book. It’s usually a chapter or two — not always enough to be sure you’ll like a book, but often enough to know you’ll hate it.”

Have you traded in print for digital?

Via The Huffington Post.

Bush Compares Himself To Zuckerberg In Book Tour Interview

As part of his book tour for his new book Decision Points, yesterday former president George Bush did an interview with Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg. The unusual meeting was live streamed on the social network at 2pm PT on Monday afternoon. In the interview, Bush said he was an iPad user and asked listeners to buy his book in print and electronically.

Bush also related to Zuckerberg in the interview. He compared his time in the White House with Zuckerberg’s leadership of the social networking site. The Guardian UK has more: “They both, Bush said, had had to make quick and difficult decisions based on common sense. They both shared a passion for education, which Zuckerberg has recently embraced, donating $100m to state schools in Newark, New Jersey.”

They have also both faced a lot of criticism. But despite Zuckerberg’s indiscretion when it comes to privacy and business partnerships, the former president is guilty of a lot worse, having started a questionable war and almost abandoned Katrina victims, as he admits in his book.

To see the whole video, follow this link.

iPad Sales Expected To Cut PC Sales

PC sales predictions are not as big as predicted thanks to tablet sales, according to a new report from Gartner. According to Gartner, PC shipments are on pace to total 352.4 million units in 2010, a 14.3 percent increase from 2009, which is down from Gartner’s previous PC shipment forecast in September of 17.9 percent growth.

Ranjit Atwal, research director at Gartner, stated: “These results reflect marked reductions in expected near-term unit growth based on expectations of weaker consumer demand, due in no small part to growing user interest in media tablets such as the iPad. Over the longer term, media tablets are expected to displace around 10 percent of PC units by 2014.”

As consumers turn towards tablets to replace their PCs, it would not be surprising if they also began using these tablets as eReaders. It is worth noting that despite the popularity of Kindles, Nooks and other dedicated eReader devices, most digital reading still happens on the PC.

Wattpad Sees 50% Member Increase In Q3

Wattpad has released their Q3 2010 Global ebook Metrics report. The report looks at how members are reading on Wattpad and compares mobile devices against and desktop usage of readers in more than 160 countries.

Wattpad users are using their smartphones and tablets to read. The study found that 50% of readers in the U.S. are accessing the site through an iPhone, iPod or iPad.

The site is also attracting a young and feminine audience with 90 percent of traffic coming from women under the age of 25. In addition, the site is attracting more readers in general. Wattpad co-founder/CEO Allen Lau told Phones Review UK: “The number of users on Wattpad has increased over fifty percent in the last quarter, making this our most thorough examination of eBook consumption habits to date.”

Via Phones Review UK.