Posted by Shirley Brady on March 6, 2012 04:08 PM
Google unveiled Google Play today, rebranding its media and app markets into one place as it seeks to unify social and mobile around games, video, music and other content as part of its "One Google" effort. The pitch for Google Play: "Your favorite entertainment is now all in one place, always accessible on the web and across your Android devices." Learn more in the videos below.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on March 6, 2012 01:25 PM
Scholastic is going digital. The world's largest children's book publisher is digitizing the bulk of its titles and releasing its first e-reading app, called Storia. While many trade publishers are reaching 20% in digital revenue, the kids’ e-book market is stuck at about 5%, and Scholastic is eager to change all that.
The Storia app, free to download with a beta version available today, offers about 1,300 e-books and multimedia e-books with popular series including “Clifford the Big Red Dog” and “Ready, Freddy!” available in digital format for the first time. It's designed for children ages 3-14 and currently available for PC tablets, with versions for iPad and iPhone and Android devices coming soon.
According to PaidContent, Storia's titles can be sorted by grade level, reading level, age and character/series, and enriched e-books “use word games, story interactions, and animation to deeply draw your young reader in, further developing confidence and critical thinking skills.”Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on February 7, 2012 03:51 PM
Most retailers are trying to find a way to get more consumers to go online. The reasons are simple: less overhead, fewer employees with health insurance, and a much higher profit margin.
But Amazon isn’t like other retailers. The word on the street in its home base of Seattle is that Amazon is thinking about opening its first-ever brick-and-mortar location, according to the Good E-Reader blog. “Amazon sources close to the situation” tell the site that the company is aiming to open the store in the next few months.
“This project is a test to gauge the market and see if a chain of stores would be profitable,” Good E-Reader reports. “They intend on going with the small boutique route with the main emphasis on books from their growing line of Amazon Exclusives and selling their e-readers and tablets.” At least they'll have a well-honed delivery system.Continue reading...
in the spotlight
Posted by Sheila Shayon on January 19, 2012 05:11 PM
When invitations to Apple’s education press conference in New York went out last week, rumors spread quickly of a "Garageband for e-books," something Steve Jobs was reportedly working on before his death last October.
No more note-passing in class, kids, as Apple today announced its digital education platform. Specifically, it's launching iBooks 2 for iPad ($15 textbooks for the iPad), an expanded iTunes U app for K-12 schools, and a custom e-book authoring platform called iBooks Author.
"Education is deep in Apple's DNA and iPad may be our most exciting education product yet. With 1.5 million iPads already in use in education institutions, including over 1,000 one-to-one deployments, iPad is rapidly being adopted by schools across the US and around the world," said Philip Schiller, Apple's SVP Worldwide Marketing. "Now with iBooks 2 for iPad, students have a more dynamic, engaging and truly interactive way to read and learn, using the device they already love."Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on January 3, 2012 03:53 PM
The main character of the Diary of a Wimpy Kid book series may not be a little passive sometimes, but his creator isn’t going to take any guff from anybody, particularly someone that he thinks is ripping him off.
Wimpy Kid, Inc., which owns the rights to the series that has sold more than 52 million books just in North America, last month filed suit against a comic-book publisher, Antarctic Press, which puts out the Diary of a Zombie Kid graphic novel title, according to Reuters.
Filed in U.S. District Court in Massachusetts, the suit contends that Antarctic stepped all over Wimpy’s trademark in various ways. The suit says that “Zombie Kid” is “deceptively similar” to the “Wimpy Kid” series and "obviously intended to confuse the public into believing that defendant's books are addition to such series," Reuters reports.
The covers of the two books have many similarities, including "distinctive striping along the spine, the hand-drawn pictures of the main character on the front and back covers, both illustrated so as to appear to be taped at each corner of the cover, and the miniature illustration of a male child's head located on the side of the book," the suit notes.Continue reading...
Posted by Barry Silverstein on November 21, 2011 02:11 PM
Here's one of those little stories that could easily float by, but which says a lot about the times we live in. Retail bookstores are becoming scarce, scarcer still since the February Borders bankruptcy. Call it the Amazon effect. More broadly, it's indicative of the transition to online shopping and e-Books, as the Kindle vs. Nook battle this holiday selling season demonstrates. The American Booksellers Association says its membership of independent bookstores has dropped to 1,900 this year, from 2,400 in 2002.
It's little comfort to downtown book browsers that Barnes & Noble, the largest retail chain, opens megastores in malls that draw customers away from the smaller indies. That's what was happening in Nashville, Tennessee. While there are two Barnes & Noble stores outside the city and another that seconds as Vanderbilt University's college bookstore, a downtown bookstore closed last December along with a branch of Borders. As Adam Ross, a Nashville novelist, commented to the New York Times, "It was a civic tragedy. The Nashville literary community went into a sort of Code Red situation." Community efforts to open a new bookstore —even the idea of a co-op was considered — fell apart.
That's when Ann Patchett came to the rescue. In a role reversal where the novelist becomes the hero of the story, the best-selling author, who grew up and owns a home in Nashville, put $300,000 of her own money into funding her own indie bookstore, Parnassus Books, which held its official opening on Saturday.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on September 19, 2011 09:58 AM
One of the definitions that Dictionary.com gives for “gourmet” is something “involving or purporting to involve high-quality or exotic ingredients and skilled preparation.” It’s not generally the first word that springs to mind when someone says A&P.
That’s not stopping the grocer from partnering with New York-based Artichoke Basille’s Pizza Co. “to develop an exclusive line of gourmet frozen pizzas,” according to pgstorebrands.com.
“When we tried their pizza, we knew it would be a hit with A&P customers, and now we’re proud to make it available in our retail stores,” stated Tom O’Boyle, executive vice president of marketing, merchandising and supply & logistics. “The Artichoke cousins’ passion for quality aligns with (A&P’s in-house) Food Emporium Trading Company brand, which offers customers a collection of international specialties from around the globe.”
The 10-inch pies go for between $6.99 and $7.99 and are sold in two varieties: artichoke (naturally) and margherita.
Besides serving up one of New York's finest pizza brands, A&P, of course, is itself slice of American history. Once one of the largest businesses in the US and the world, A&P's brand story is climbing the bestseller charts.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on July 19, 2011 03:00 PM
The customer comments on a Comic-Con post on the Borders bookstore chain's Facebook page, its last post in fact, say it all.
Following on its "don't worry, it's business as usual as we search for a buyer" notice on its website, Borders Group, a pioneer in big-box booksellers, posted a sad notice on another section of its website confirming an unhappy ending to its story.
A press release yesterday confirms that it will close all stores and be out of business by the end of September. Unable to attract a buyer willing to rescue it from bankruptcy, the nation's second-largest bookseller, with 10,700 employees and more than 1,200 stores, is ending its run.Continue reading...