On Wednesday, Jan. 27, Apple finally confirmed escalating rumors of its impending tablet, with Steve Jobs' announcement of the company's new iPad—which many describe as looking and functioning like a big iPhone—with a 9.7-inch, LED backlit, color touch-screen and WiFi, and an option for 3G via AT&T.
It's well-known that reference books generally have been suffering lately, another facet of the industry that has been affected by the Internet and consumers' easy access to free information. "For 2009, revenue-wise, … we estimated reference book sales would fall much [more] than that of the other categories we expected to do poorly this year …," says Michael Norris, senior analyst at Simba Information, a market research and consulting firm in Stamford, Conn. "The simple reason is that consumers have a different relationship with reference-book content than they do with, say, a great work of fiction or an engaging biography. They mostly just need a snippet of information here and there, and being that the Web houses a lot of what a consumer thinks he or she needs, few are bothering to buy traditional reference books."
While the Hispanic population in the United States is expected to expand to nearly 50 million by 2010, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, current purchasing patterns indicate that this 16 percent of the nation may not buy books at the same rate as the remaining 84 percent.
"The market for digital books … has been roughly doubling every 18 months,” says Andrew Savikas, O’Reilly Media’s vice president of digital initiatives. “Follow that line out, and in less than a decade it’s 64 times the size it is now.”
If the Internet has taught traditional media anything, it’s that valuable content should be protected or it will quickly lose its worth. Letting music, news articles or whatever fall into the hands of those who do not value it has been toppling old media companies left and right, and is likely to continue. Take newspapers: Had their stories not been copied, pasted, snarked upon and uprooted far from their original sources (and the advertisers), there wouldn’t be nearly as many journalists in the unemployment line today.
U.S. ISBN agency Bowker has announced the publication of a new report providing insights into who is buying books and what motivates them to buy. "2008 U.S. Book Consumer Demographics and Buying Behaviors Annual Report" is based on data from Bowker's PubTrack Consumer and includes book data, demographics, psychographics, genre-category breakdowns and distribution channel analysis, according to Bowker. The report also includes first-quarter 2009 trends, documenting that mass-merchandisers picked up market share while bookstores had the largest decline.*
Simba Information, which recently produced the groundbreaking "Trade E-Book Publishing 2009" report, has added "Trends in Trade Book Retailing" to its research offerings.
More U.S. adults had read an e-book (15 percent) than had actually paid for an e-book this year, according to Michael Norris, senior analyst at Simba Information, based on the results of a recent Simba study called, "Trade E-book Publishing 2009."
Who hasn’t tried the excuse, “My dog ate my homework,” on a teacher? Success with that excuse now is nearly impossible, according to experts in educational book publishing. So much of what teachers currently do involves digital materials and tools that, short of a network failure or computer glitch, a student would be hard-pressed to come up with a similar excuse.
10.5 million Number of sheets of paper that were used last year in Princeton University campus clusters—equivalent to 100,000 reams of paper, or about 5,000 trees. Princeton cited this figure on its Web site when explaining why it is participating in the Kindle DX E-reader Pilot Program this fall. The university hopes that students’ use of the Kindle DX will reduce their desire to print or photocopy without hindering their ability to learn.