‘e’, ‘PoD’ to iPad

“The Book is Here to Stay”.

The title of a keynote address at the recent (May) Asian Content for the World’s Children conference (Asian Children’s Publishers Symposium) held in Singapore, by Duncan Newton, Manager, Application and Business Development, Asia Pacific Region – Kodak.

In this day and age of everything going ‘e’, whilst not denying the monumental growth of ebooks, Duncan gave a compelling presentation on how advances in print technology and services are facilitatiing niche, specialist, book stores through ‘Print on Demand – PoD’ (the capability to print single books from current and back-file title orders) services. Significantly, too, more and more authors are able to self-publish and, with Amazon listing any title printed via the ‘Lightning Source’ PoD, it’s easy to understand why.

On the other hand, there’s no denying the rise of the ‘eBook’…

  • Random House eBook sales in 2011 are outstripping 2010 by a factor of 10
  • As of April this year Amazon was selling 105 eBooks to every 100 printed books and are selling three times as many this year as compared to a year ago
  • 19.4 million dedicated e-Readers (Kindle, Nook, etc.) were sold in 2010
  • Amazon now has 34,000 titles for kids alone
  • Barnes & Noble sold 1 million eBooks on Christmas Day 2010, before their server crashed!

But what about the iPad or other tablets? Are they part of this eBook revolution? Interestingly, whilst tablet sales are killing laptop sales, a Google survey indicated that 80% of people use their tablet at home – suggesting the purpose is not primarily for portability. The survey reported that the major use of tablets were for games (84%), searching (78%) and email (74%), with eBooks (46%) quite a way down the list – suggesting these tools are not primarily being used [and will not be?] for reading.

PS For that story you’ve always wanted to write, check out Amazon’s “Createspace“. If you’ve only got a chapter or two, but you think your ideas have potential, “Creatspace’ provides the means to share them with a like-minded and supportive community and secure practical help with marketing, production and distribution.

About David

Manpower Manager with prior experience in libraries and with library systems.
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