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Archives: April 2011

Amazon Now Offering Hit Songs for $.69

Today Amazon decided that it wasn’t involved in enough price wars. iTunes is Amazon’s next target. Amazon started selling recent hit releases for $.69, including Katy Perry’s “E.T.”, Jennifer Lopez’s “On the Floor” and Lady Gaga’s “Born This Way.”

It has always sold some MP3s for $.69, and it has even had weekly sales. But it wasn’t until today that Amazon started selling recent hit releases for that price without calling it a sale. No, this looks permanent (unless it doesn’t work).

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Mediabistro Course

Freelancing 101 Online Boot Camp

Freelancing 101Starting April 28, this online event will show you the best way to start your freelancing career, from the first steps of self-advertising and marketing, to building your schedule and managing clients. By the end of this online boot camp you will have a plan for making a profitable career as a freelancer, and the skill set to devote yourself to it. Register now! 

Week In Review: Borders Breach, Nook Color, Kindle Corruption

Happy Friday! For your weekend reading, here is a roundup of our top stories for the week:

Borders’ website was hacked into making it possible to go in and change your account information.

Barnes & Noble updated the Nook Color.

We interviewed Italian publisher Marco Ferrario about eBooks in Italy.

Simba released a study finding that 60% of iPad owners read eBooks on their devices.

We discovered that eReaders could be corrupted with malicious files, but that it is not likely.

The new ad-supported Kindle shipped.

YouTube started renting movies.

Amazon’s Q1 net sales were up 38% over 2010.

Sony released a new tablet.

MobiHandler released a new way to organize your Kindle books.

Most Americans Don’t Want to Pay For News

A recent survey conducted by Adweek/Harris Poll found that 4 out of 5 Americans would refuse to pay for online news. of those who’d pay, most (14%) would only pay less than $10 a month and only 2 out of a hundred would pay over $20 a month.

This data is based on pull of 2,105 adults in the US, which was conducted between March 29 and 31 of this year. These results are similar to a similar poll conducted in Canada, which found that 81% would not pay for news. This does not bode well for paywalls.

These numbers also reflect a drop in those willing to pay; a similar poll conducted in late 2009 found 23% willing to open their wallets.

image by secretlondon123

Xplana Releases Educational Apps for Android, iOS

Xplana has released its long awaited apps for Android and iPhone today. You can now use the apps to log in to your account and make full use of all the study materials you’ve added to Xplana. The new apps will make it easy to record lectures as well as upload pictures while still in class.

Xplana is an educational platform released last year. If you follow textbook news, you might know its parent company, Missouri Book Services. It combines collaboration tools with note taking, eBook reading, and social media.

iTunes

Android Market

Lillian Eichler Watson’s Book of Etiquette Is Free eBook Today

In honor of today’s royal wedding, we’ve chosen Lillian Eichler Watson’s Book of Etiquette as today’s free eBook of the Day. The book, originally published in 1924 in New York, gives antiquated advise on manners including tips on marriage.

Here is an excerpt: “As soon as the prospective bridegroom has won the consent of the young lady whom he wishes to be his wife, he places the engagement ring on the third finger of her left hand. The convention is that the ring be a diamond solitaire set in gold or platinum, or, if it is preferred, a diamond set with other stones. It is always wise to consult the individual preference of the young lady in determining the choice of the ring, and it is her privilege to choose whatever kind she wants regardless of tradition or convention.”

Project Gutenberg has the free download.

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

One in 4 Americans Read eBooks

The Book Industry Study Group is currently selling a new report that studies a recent survey it conducted.

Some of the results include the fact that fiction continues to dominate downloads with SF, romance, and literary fiction each accounting for 20% of the market. Also, samples and sales were named as the biggest influence on the decision to buy. And 2/3 of eBook consumers have gone exclusively digital.

But there’s one detail that didn’t quite make it into the report, and I think it’s important.The survey group covered 3 thousand people, and this report is drawn from the responses of the 750 who own an eReader or eBook. So 1 in 4 respondents are into eBooks. This would suggest that the adoption rate for eBooks in the US is about 25%.

via BISG

image by The Bees

iPad Cuts Into Microsoft’s PC Sales

It looks like tablets are moving in on PC sales. Yesterday, Microsoft Windows reported $4.45 billion in third-quarter sales, which was less than the $4.6 billion that analysts were expecting.

Bloomberg has more: “Personal computer shipments unexpectedly fell 3.2 percent in the quarter as consumers held off purchases and shifted to tablet computers, IDC said. Multiyear contracts with corporations and robust demand for Office business software couldn’t make up for consumers who are choosing iPads over a new laptop with Windows.”

Kim Caughey Forrest, an analyst at Fort Pitt Capital Group attributed the loss to iPad sales. She told Bloomberg: “PCs aren’t being bought and if you are going to buy a laptop you’ll look at an iPad. That’s where some of those Windows sales went.”

PBS Kids Releases First Android App

PBS launched the Super Why app today. This app, which helps kids build critical literacy skills through immersive and entertaining adventures, is based on the award-winning hit preschool series produced by Out of the Blue Enterprises.

Lesli Rotenberg, SVP, Children’s Media, had this to say: “Our goal is to be where kids are, and we know that they are interacting with Android devices. Research has shown that the SUPER WHY App can lead to gains in key preschool literacy skills, including letter identification, vocabulary and rhyming, so we are really excited to offer it to a new set of families through the Android platform.”

It requires Android v2.1 and it is free right now on Amazon. You can also find it in iTunes and elsewhere.

Should eBooks Have Soundtracks?

What would Superfly, Saturday Night Fever and The Graduate be without the music? Good movies, but something would be missing. Musicians have long seen the potential of partnering with filmmakers to release work, so what about partnering with authors?

The rise of enhanced eBooks offers musicians and writers a new avenue of creative expression, potentially. Imagine reading a new Jennifer Egan book with its original soundtrack by Sonic Youth. It would give a whole new meaning to the term audiobook.

It could help authors find new readers and bands find new listeners. Plus the music videos could be about characters from the book, making author promo videos a lot more interesting instead of just another talking head author shot.

What do you think?

SharedBook Now Offers DIY Textbooks

SharedBook has just launched AcademicPub, a new service which helps instructors gather and organize their own textbook.

This new service works something like the MIYO service that Flat World Knowledge launched a few weeks back. Educators can build their own textbook or other course materials by gathering content from any number of sources, including the AcademicPub Content Library, their own original works, or the Web. Once assembled, AcademicPub will automatically organize the content, which can then be published in both print and digital.

AcademicPub does have one interesting difference from MIYO. SharedBook is promising that all content in the textbooks will have a valid copyright and none will be pirated. The service has been in beta since January, but it was only 2 weeks ago that SharedBook opened it to the general public.

via SharedBook

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