Coming of age

Later today, I’m delivering an updated version of my presentation, “Mobile reading (really!) comes of age” to a joint CENDI – NFAIS conference. The slides will go up in a bit, and in the meantime, here are some links to research that helped direct the presentation.

If you’re really interested in this topic, you can also access a companion bibliography compiled when I developed this presentation last year. Some of those links are a bit dated, but others remain useful.

In Publishing Perspectives, Karen Holt profiles efforts by Goodreads to build a program that lets writers and publishers pay to (hopefully) build awareness of a title.

In the Wall Street Journal, Jeffrey Trachtenberg writes one of the most comprehensive overviews of what the growth of e-books means for brick-and-mortar stores. Despite a few blown calls (the price of e-books is not lower because they forego physical costs), it’s a fair assessment of the future of trade book sales.

In the New York Times, Nick Bilton writes about the impact of e-reader ubiquity on pricing and device sales.

Market research firm InStat projects that e-reader shipments will grow from 12 million (2010 estimated) to 35 million (2014). The company sees dedicated e-readers and tablets appealing to different customers.

The results of Forrester’s most recent research on growth in the e-book market is summarized in a blog post by James McQuivey. If you’re interested in buying a copy, it’s an almost affordable $499.

IDC thinks media tablet sales will reach 46 million by 2014. If that estimate holds water, I’d guess the projections for smart phone sales will need to be adjusted downward. Also, PCWorld has compiled a side-by-side comparison of the current tablets.

James Bridle takes a critical look at the limitations of ePub as a digital standard (the current version of ePub, that is).

Apple claims it sold about 7 million iPads in the six months following its release. Fortune takes a look at the estimates for sales to date.

Nielsen released the results of a mobile study. They found that only 4% of those surveyed have bought a tablet, with almost half of those tablet owners describing themselves as “early adopters”. They see significant future growth in this segment.

Writing on his own blog, O’Reilly Media executive Joe Wikert makes the case for iPad as an open platform that does not lock a reader into a specific store.

It’s a post that I’ve covered before, but Kevin Anderson’s assessment of iPad app pricing for digital content is worth a look.

Blackberry announced its entrance into the tablet space with a device that will support Flash. Restaurant web site designers cheered.

Publishing perspectives notes that Adobe is planning an update to AIR that is more mobile-friendly. The firm is also planning to create an app hub, dubbed InMarket, that will support multiple operating systems.

At O’Reilly Radar, Kevin Shockey updates the list of tablet players, including one that runs on Android as well as one that runs on Windows.

On GigaOm, Matthew Ingram laments the “walled garden” nature of many apps. He focuses on magazines, but the lessons apply to other content forms, as well.

And finally: although not directly related to magazine or book content, an eMarketer study projects that mobile advertising is expected to grow to $743.1 million this year, an increase of 79%. As Advertising Age notes, it is expected to cross the $1 billion threshold in 2011.

About Brian O'Leary

Founder and principal of Magellan Media Consulting, Brian O’Leary helps enterprises with media and publishing components capitalize on the power of content. A veteran of more than 30 years in the publishing industry and a prolific content producer himself, Brian leverages the breadth and depth of his experience to deliver innovative content solutions.

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