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Monday Musings: Apple's stock price confounds; Random House "bondage bonuses" delight

December 10, 2012 By James Sturdivant and Brian Howard
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The recent plunge in Apple's stock price (down 25 percent since the iPhone 5 debuted in September, despite the phone's immense popularity) has perplexed market watchers. One of the principal theories for the drop, not surprisingly, involves the scrappy new crop of iPad competitors- the Nexus 7, Kindle HD and the like. The iPad's share of the market is predicted to dip below 50 percent by 2016 as lower priced mid-size tablets capture more of the market.

On the other hand, a lower entry point means we can also expect the tablet market to grow. This can only be good news for magazine publishers.

The tablet market is maturing as new players find niches in what has become a standard way of consuming content. This might be bad for Apple, but it expands the audience eager to be wowed by rich media on those high-def screens. For agile companies, that spells opportunity.

James Sturdivant

Duty Bound

As the Friday spike in our e-newsletter's open and click-through rates attest, the publishing world is agog over the $5,000 bonuses Random House is handing out to U.S. employees to celebrate the success of E.L. James' runaway sensation, 50 Shades of Grey. (Our favorite headline: The International Business Times' "Bondage Bonuses").

Reaction in the commentsphere is generally positive, along the lines of, "it's nice to see a company sharing the glory with its staff." But leave it to a story about success in publishing to bring out the wet blankets. As one commenter on the New York Times' Media Decoder blog piped in: "Looks like the last hurrah in publishing." (Really?!?)

Over at the WaPo, another commenter chimed in: "Nobody ever went broke underestimating people's taste."  (Which we don't think quite tracks, and seems wrong besides.)

Quite interesting was the comment on this Daily Mail piece suggesting that the employees of the book manufacturer who worked mandatory overtime all summer to get the books to Random House might share the wealth as well.

 

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Most Recent Comments:
Jack Socha - Posted on December 10, 2012
I own an iPad2 and an iPad Touch. Growing tired of the "gated community" structure of iTunes, I bought a 7" Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 and found it a delight. I have an excellent ebook reader and the best audiobook player I have ever seen...it actually returns to where you left off! Plus, I can pop movies and music, books and audiobooks on to a micro SD card and just play them. Price: about $180. THAT's why Apple stock is dropping.
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Archived Comments:
Jack Socha - Posted on December 10, 2012
I own an iPad2 and an iPad Touch. Growing tired of the "gated community" structure of iTunes, I bought a 7" Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 and found it a delight. I have an excellent ebook reader and the best audiobook player I have ever seen...it actually returns to where you left off! Plus, I can pop movies and music, books and audiobooks on to a micro SD card and just play them. Price: about $180. THAT's why Apple stock is dropping.