As a student, buying books is quite a luxury, so I always make the most of offers that enable me to read in a way that doesn’t break the bank. After downloading the Blloon app, I thought I’d mention what I’d read with my first 1000 free pages!
A new reading app aimed at young adults launched in Britain a few days ago. The app, called Blloon, is the product of a Berlin startup company and follows a freemium model. You can download the app now for free and you are given 1000 pages worth of credit to start reading with straight away. After the 1000 page trial is up, you can gain more credits by reviewing books that you’ve read and by sharing books on social media platforms, or by paying for them.
It is a common misconception that ebooks are cheap products, and are less valuable than their printed counterparts. To the consumer, it perhaps seems that all a publisher has done is copy and pasted the text of a printed novel into a piece of software, saved it, and uploaded it to an ecommerce site. What the consumer might not realise is that there are costs involved in the publishing of ebooks, just as there are costs in making a physical product (have a look at this article on The New York Times’ website for some information about the costs of publishing an ebook). The misunderstanding that the price of an ebook is mostly profit for the publisher is problematic, and it needs to be addressed. Continue reading
Matthew Yglesias posted a powerful article on his website, Vox, on Wednesday in which he attacks book publishers. His argument is very clear and one sided to an extreme, with strong subheaders like ‘Publishers are superfluous’, and ‘Book publishers are terrible at marketing’. Yglesias’ article, in my opinion, fails in many areas. To a reader with knowledge of the publishing industry, there are lots of inaccuracies in what he says, and to a reader without knowledge, the article seems to be too biased to be credible. Continue reading
I mentioned a couple of days ago that I might be on the lookout for a Kindle. Since then, I’ve realised perhaps that a tablet would be a better choice than a simple ebook reader. For either the same price or a little extra, I could get a tablet and download various ebook apps (and also be free from guilt in class when we inevitably end up discussing evil Amazon and their publishing takeover with an Amazon product in my bag!). I still love buying books and borrowing them from the library, but, as I said earlier this week, it makes my commute a lot heavier. I also think that, as I read a lot of out of copyright books, I could save a small fortune by making myself a free digital library instead of purchasing print copies. I thought it might be interesting to do a little round-up of what I think are the best devices to read on from a strapped for cash student’s point of view. Continue reading
Recently, I have been watching a few videos on the Computerphile YouTube channel. I’ve found a few publishing related videos about typesetting, printing, and ebook text. Computerphile take the most interesting aspects of digital technology and explain them in non-abstract ways that a computing novice can understand. The Computerphile videos I’ve been interested in lately have been ‘The Kindle Text Problem’ and ‘EXTRA BITS – More on E-Reader Text Layouts’. Continue reading
I’m a little shocked at an article I found on the FutureBook blog about ebook reading habits on mobile phones, a topic that is being discussed this week at the Frankfurt Book Fair. The article summarises the results of a survey taken by 3000 consumers in the US and the UK by Michael Cairns and Publishing Technology, and describes how many people use their phones to read ebooks. Continue reading