Free is not the magic number: New trends in ebook pricing
May 31, 2013

Ebook pricing strategies are changing rapidly as the digital market grows. Self-published authors continue to shake things up, but what might have been best practice a couple of years ago is not necessarily relevant in 2013 — and as retailers amass more data and publishers experiment, there’s a new set of tips for publishers and authors to pay attention to.

Are ebook prices falling? Sometimes…

“Pricing for us is a daily, hourly, minute-by-minute discipline,” Michael Tamblyn, Kobo’s chief content officer, said in an IDPF panel at BookExpo America on Thursday. Year on year, Kobo sees an eight percent decline in the

Six book publishing lessons from Open Road Media’s first three years
May 23, 2013

When the former HarperCollins CEO Jane Friedman cofounded Open Road Media in 2009, the publisher was one of the first of its kind: The idea was that it would mine the backlist for books that had never been available as ebooks, snap up the digital rights and publish the ebooks for the first time, thus introducing authors like William Styron and Alice Walker to new audiences.

Nearly four years and 3,000 titles later (with an additional 1,000 titles under contract), the company is still focused around acquiring and marketing backlist titles.

Amazon Making Smartphone With 3D Screen, Dedicated Audio Streaming Device, WSJ Reports
May 9, 2013

Amazon offers a range of hardware, including its Kindle e-readers and tablets, but now it’s looking to expand the line with two new smartphones and an audio-only device that streams music, according to the Wall Street Journal. The phones include a high-end one with a glasses-free 3D screen, as well as another about which details were not included in the report, which presumably would be a more traditional design.

Amazon has been rumored to have been working on a phone for a while now,

Everything You Thought You Knew About Metadata…
January 1, 2013

It's no surprise that there's a lot of confusion around metadata for books. It's complicated. If only they hadn't used the "M" word—metadata. It reeks of digital complexity. And then you read the standard definition: "Metadata is data about data." Gee, thanks. As if your eyes hadn't already glazed over.

E-readers and e-book platforms track users' activity, says a new study
December 6, 2012

What does your e-reader know about you? More than you think, according to a new study by the Electronic Frontier Foundation.

The EFF, a nonprofit group that advocates for consumer rights and privacy, combed through the privacy policies of a number of e-readers and e-book platforms, including Google Books, Amazon Kindle, Barnes & Noble Nook, Kobo, and Indiebound, and found many devices track book searches, monitor what and how readers read downloaded books, record book purchases, and in some cases, even share information without a customer’s consent.

How Many Tablets Does the Market Have Room For?
November 26, 2012

Surface. iPad. Nook HD. Kindle Fire HD. iPad Mini. The list goes on and on. Consumers can try to escape the onslaught of new tablets, but they are inescapable.

Apple, Sony, Samsung, Asus, Acer, Dell, Hewlett-Packard and Barnes & Noble are among the many companies that have developed at least one tablet. Some of these companies are attempting to expand the market with the so-called tablet hybrids, which take advantage of Windows 8.

Media Decoder: Pearson and Bertelsmann in Talks to Combine Random House and Penguin
October 25, 2012

Pearson, the British media conglomerate, said Thursday that it was in talks to combine its Penguin publishing house with Random House, owned by Bertelsmann of Germany.

The deal, if completed, would bring together two of the biggest book publishers in the world, uniting Penguin and its iconic orange logo with the owner of Crown Publishing and Knopf Doubleday. The combination would create a division with greater scale that could compete in a rapidly evolving e-book market.

Amazon struggles to get its books onto the bestseller charts
October 18, 2012

Despite its almost mythical dominance in book retailing, Amazon has struggled mightily to crack the publishing business. While it sells millions of copies of other publishers’ books, Amazon can’t quite seem to get its own books off the ground and onto the bestseller charts, according to a recent Wall Street Journal piece that examined the online retailer’s publishing woes.

Case in point: Penny Marshall’s memoir, “My Mother Was Nuts.”