Sunday, October 31, 2010
Saturday, October 30, 2010
Friday, October 29, 2010
According to an article from The Wall Street Journal, magazine and newspaper subscriptions with color photos will be available on the device. In addition, according to a posting on the Bits Blog, B&N has also introduced a new feature called Nook Friends that will allow readers to share content and notes with friends via social networks.
It will be interesting to see how this new type of device does this holiday season. B&N is expected to begin shipping the devices on November 19th.
Wednesday, October 27, 2010
While the blog highlights many of the digital happenings affecting our industry, there is often more going on than we have a chance to cover. Here are some links to interesting articles from the past few days.
- Apple sold 4.19 million iPads last quarter bringing its total sales to almost 7.5 million since April. Interestingly, the iPad sales last quarter were greater than the sales for the entire line of Macintosh computers which also hit a record high at nearly 3.9 million units. Some analysts are now predicting that Apple will sell up to 40 million iPads next year.
- According to an article from Adage, Apple has also expanded distribution for the iPad to retailers such as Target, Walmart, Sam’s Club, and Best Buy. Previously, the iPad was available at 300 Apple stores and now it will be available at 8,000 stores across the country.
- A recent survey of students by the Associated Press and mtvU found that 57 percent of students said that life without computers and cell phones would be stressful but 25 percent said it would be a relief.
- An article from The New York Times says that Sharp is scaling back its laptop operations to focus on tablets. Sharp plans to launch 5.5-inch and 10-inch screen Android tablets in December. In addition, Sharp will launch an e-book store that will give users access to 30,000 e-books, newspapers, and magazines. A second article from MacWorld provides more information about the tablets.
- According to a TechCrunch article, Amazon says that it continues to sell more Kindle books than print books. Amazon says that it has sold more than three times as many Kindle books from January to September of this year than it did for the same nine months of 2009. Amazon also says that sales for its latest Kindle device have already surpassed total Kindle device sales from the holiday season last year (October through December 2009).
- A recent article from Publishers Weekly discusses the challenges associated with formatting e-books.
Tuesday, October 26, 2010
Amazon also announced that it will make Kindle newspapers and magazines available for reading on the Kindle apps. This functionality will be available for Apple devices initially and for Android devices or other apps in the future. This functionality may encourage users to stay within the Kindle app for all of their reading on various devices.
Saturday, October 23, 2010
Here is a link to a video demo with additional information.
Friday, October 22, 2010
In an email about the webinar, Steven Keith Platt, PRI Director and Research Fellow, noted, "Our research study found that 97 percent of students prefer to receive information via digital channels, rather than from non-digital sources. Overall, text messages were found to be the most effective distribution channel, followed closely by digital signage."
For those interested in attending, you can sign up here.
Thursday, October 21, 2010
Neil Patterson, director of Life on Earth, commented on the effort to revolutionize science education. Patterson noted, “Motion and film are powerful ways of teaching. We’re trying to exploit the human brain, like videogames do, and it’s not a small matter to use technology now available to us.”
The digital book will contain 59 chapters and will be extremely expensive to create so university level editions will be sold for about 10 percent of the cost of an average print textbook. The foundation will also need donations to support the effort.
The Wired article also includes a couple of videos that are worth watching. The first video is a demonstration of the first chapter of Life on Earth and the second video provides more information about the initiative.
Wednesday, October 20, 2010
Tuesday, October 19, 2010
In regards to texting, teens between the ages of 13-17 far surpass every other age group. Teens send an average of 3,339 texts a month or about six texts for every hour that they are awake. Young adults between the ages of 18-24 come in second at about 1,630 texts per month or about three texts per hour. For both age groups, voice activity has decreased since last year.
According to the report, these age groups are now relying on their phones for many tasks in addition to texting including: the Internet, e-mail, multimedia, games, and apps. Since the second quarter of 2009, data usage among teens (ages 3-17) has quadrupled and among young adults (18-24) it has tripled.
The increased reliance on mobile devices among these age groups presents many opportunities for the mobile industry in the future.
Sunday, October 17, 2010
Saturday, October 16, 2010
- 85% of all Americans and 96% of 18-29 year olds own a cell phone
- 52% of all Americans and 72% of 18-19 year olds own a laptop computer
- 47% of all Americans and 75% of 18-29 year olds own an mp3 player
- 42% of all Americans and 62% of 18-29 year olds own a home gaming system
In regards to e-readers and tablets, 5% of all Americans own and e-book reader and 4% own a tablet computer. The report notes that these devices are new but they are proving to be popular with early adopters. The ownership rates of these devices among college graduates and the affluent are roughly double the national average.
The full report is available here
Friday, October 15, 2010
Thursday, October 14, 2010
A recent article from AZCentral.com discusses the pilot at ASU. McGraw-Hill, John Wiley & Sons, and Cengage Learning have all made a limited number of titles available for the pilot. Some professors who own the rights to their books have also made the titles available for printing. As a result of the pilot, the textbook prices for several courses have reduced. Dennis Mekelburg, associate director of ASU Bookstore, estimates that students could save about a half-million dollars each semester if five percent of ASU classes switch to print-on-demand.
In another article Estella McCollum, director of the KU Bookstore, commented on the pilot at KU. She noted, “With this, we’re essentially never out of stock on the printable titles. We just have a more efficient option for purchasing.” The KU Bookstore hopes to expand the print options next semester to include: student projects, books, portfolios, cookbooks, and other projects.
An article about the pilot at Portland State University points out that the program is good for students, the store, and the earth because it reduces prices for students, keeps sales at the store, and reduces wasteful printing and transportation. The store hopes to get more publishers on board by next semester so that they can increase the amount of content that can be printed.
More information about these pilots will be available prior to CAMEX in February 2011.
Wednesday, October 13, 2010
Some of the Student PIRG data that contributed to this conclusion matches data from the NACS Student Watch study however, there are some differences. For example, in regards to student preferences, the Student PIRGs data shows that 75 percent of students prefer print while 25 percent prefer digital. The NACS study found a similar statistic but when students were subsequently asked the primary reason for purchasing print over digital only 42 percent indicated that their preference for print was the primary reason for their purchase choice. The next two reasons were: lack of inventory (19 percent) and that the professor used the print copy (13 percent). This shows that while a majority of students may prefer print to digital, that preference is decreasing in its relevance as a reason not to purchase digital -- suggesting that the preference for print over digital may be lessening in significance. If the content is available and if the faculty chooses digital more students may be ready to switch. Preference for print may have been definitive before but it is more marginal now.
The Student PIRGs report also estimates that students would spend an average of 80 percent less on textbooks each year if they moved to all open textbooks. This compares to 61 percent less for rentals, 52 percent less for e-textbooks, and 39 percent less for e-reader textbooks. While open textbooks may be more affordable now, the model may not be sustainable over the long term. As more faculty adopt open course materials, it may have an impact on overall educational affordability because revenue that goes to support financial aid, tuition sustainability, and other institutional expenses will be lost. This is not an argument against seeking lower cost course materials. Rather, it is an argument that open source still presents enough shortcomings that it is not yet a panacea for the textbook affordability problem.
While open textbooks will certainly play a part in the future, the associated limitations need to be worked out before they can be widely adopted. College Stores should be thinking about ways to incorporate open textbooks into their offerings. College Stores have an opportunity to provide access to the digital versions and offer printed versions through print-on-demand so that the store remains the primary source for student content needs, regardless of format or source.
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
Monday, October 11, 2010
The iPad pilot is part of VDOE’s larger "Beyond Textbook" initiative which aims to “explore the potential of wireless technology and digital textbooks to enhance teaching and learning.”
Patricia Wright, Superintendent of Public Instruction, commented on the initiative, “The experiences of students and teachers will be evaluated, and the knowledge gained will help policy makers, educators, and our private-sector partners better understand the potential instructional uses of interactive digital media and wireless technology. We will learn what works in the classroom and build on that as our schools move beyond traditional textbooks.”
The iPad pilot program will kick off on November 1 and will run for 12 weeks. Additional information can be found in the press release.
Saturday, October 9, 2010
Friday, October 8, 2010
A recent article from The Chronicle includes an interview with Mr. Darnton about the meeting and the challenges. Darnton noted that the biggest obstacle will be “finding our way through our baroque copyright laws.” Next steps for the group include: forming a coalition of foundations to fund it and bringing together leaders to mobilize support in Washington.
Mr. Darnton also recently wrote a column for The New York Review of Books blog that discusses why the U.S. should begin building a national digital library and the other countries that are doing so.
Thursday, October 7, 2010
Scholastic has released the results from its 2010 Kids and Family Reading Report that explored reading in the digital age. The study included children between the ages of 6 and 17, and their parents for a total of 2,090 respondents.
The study produced some interesting findings including:
- 25 percent of children (age 6-17) have read a book on a digital device
- 57 percent of children (age 9-17) say they are interested in reading an e-book
- 33 percent of children (age 9-17) say they would read more books for fun if they had greater access to e-books.
While digital is appealing to many children, the results also showed that kids still embrace print books. 66 percent of children (ages 9-17) agreed with the statement, “I'll always want to read books printed on paper even though there are e-books available."
As for the parents, 6 percent said that they currently own an e-reader and another 16 percent plan to buy one within the year. In addition, 83 percent of the parents said they do or will encourage their child to use their e-reader device. However, many parents worry about the impact of digital devices. 56 percent of parents said that they worry that their children will become less interested in reading books for fun as they become more involved with digital devices.
The full report is available on Scholastic’s website.
Wednesday, October 6, 2010
- According to The Wall Street Journal's Digits blog, earlier this week Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer commented, “You’ll see new slates with Windows on them. You’ll see them this Christmas.” Ballmer did not provide any additional information.
- Earlier this year, the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) organization announced a partnership with Marvell and now OLPC has received a grant from Marvell to fund the development of an Android educational tablet for children around the world. According to an Ars Technica article, the device will be available for demonstration at the Consumer Electronics Show in January.
- Rumors have been circulating that MIT is planning to charge for its free online course materials via the MIT OpenCourseWare (OCW) system. An article from The New York Times reports that this is not the case.
- A posting on the Gadgetwise blog features a round-up of the tablets that are in the works. The posting does not include the latest news that Dell is preparing to launch a second Android tablet. Dell recently showed off a 7-inch tablet at a conference but details about the device were not disclosed.
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
Gene Munster, analyst for Piper Jaffray, says that Apple could control 94 percent of the global tablet market this year. This means that Apple may sell an estimated 10.7 million tablets out of 11.3 million in industry sales. Munster also increased the forecast for iPad sales in 2011. Munster previously estimated that Apple would sell about 14.5 million units in 2011. The new forecast says that Apple could sell 21 million iPads and surpass sales of the Mac.
A second article from Electronista discusses Kindle sales. Douglas Anmuth from Barclays Capital estimates that Amazon will sell about five million Kindles this year and 11.5 million in 2012.
These forecasts put Apple ahead of Amazon in terms of device sales but Amazon will still benefit from e-book sales on the iPad. Currently, the Kindle app is one of the most popular apps for the iPad.
Sunday, October 3, 2010
The video has some really interesting ideas and is worth a watch. In addition, here is an article with more information.
Saturday, October 2, 2010
The study also found that consumers that own e-readers read more and purchase more books. The study notes, "Overall, two in five Americans (40%) read 11 or more books a year with one in five reading 21 or more books in a year (19%). But among those who have an e-reader, over one-third read 11-20 books a year (36%) and over one-quarter read 21 or more books in an average year (26%)."
Additional results from the study can be found here.
Friday, October 1, 2010
The Mashable website recently featured an interesting article about text messaging and how it has become one of the most popular forms of communication. The article includes a graphic to illustrate the texting trends and averages in the U.S. and around the world. Some interesting stats include:
- Texting has surpassed e-mail, phone, and face-to-face conversation as the main communication vehicle for 12-17 year olds.
- In the U.S., 14-17 year old girls send about 100 texts per day while boys in the same age group send about 30 texts per day.
- By 2009, 5 trillion text messages were being sent annually worldwide.
For more statistics, visit the Mashable website.