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Latest on e-books, e-paper, DRM and related technologies



Last Build Date: Sun, 30 Apr 2017 07:11:53 GMT

 



Amazon to shut down the Underground App Program

Fri, 28 Apr 2017 23:02:52 GMT

*Announcement: Amazon Underground Actually Free Program (https://developer.amazon.com/blogs/appstore/post/cbadeae1-990d-4d52-bef5-ea61f6114b94/announcement-amazon-actually-free-program)* I'm not sure if I've ever used any of these free Underground apps. I, for one, won't miss it when it finally shuts down. This was the program that replaced the Free App of the Day. That one, I definitely used. Maybe they'll bring it back? ---Quote--- In August 2015 we launched the Underground Actually Free (https://www.amazon.com/gp/feature.html?docId=1003016361) program, and since that time we added thousands of apps, expanded internationally, and added support for Fire tablets. At the same time the Amazon Appstore increased selection to offer more than 800,000 apps and games while expanding our footprint across a growing portfolio of Fire tablets, Fire TV, and Android devices as well as 236 countries and territories worldwide. In addition to expanding the reach of Appstore, we created new monetization opportunities for developers. Developers can now earn revenue outside their game by converting game characters and imagery into branded t-shirts via Merch by Amazon. And with Amazon Coins, Appstore customers can save on every game in the Amazon Appstore. Customers can buy Amazon Coins at a discount, while developers continue to get their full 70 percent revenue share. While we will continue to expand the Amazon Appstore experience, we have decided to discontinue the Underground Actually Free program. All support for the program will end in 2019. Until then, current Fire tablet customers can continue to enjoy previously installed Underground apps and access the Underground Actually Free store. Fire tablet access to the Underground store will not extend beyond currently supported devices. Access to the Underground Actually Free store through Amazon’s Appstore for Android devices will end in summer 2017. Android customers will continue to have access to the Amazon Underground app to shop for physical goods and access Prime Video content and can enjoy previously installed Underground Actually Free apps. As of May 31st, 2017, Amazon will no longer accept new app and game submissions for the Underground Actually Free program. If you’re an existing Amazon Underground developer, you will continue to get paid for every minute customers spend in your Amazon Underground app as provided in our developer agreement. Similarly, you can continue to submit and publish updates to your existing Amazon Underground apps until 2019. If you have questions, click here to learn more or contact us . ---End Quote---



B&N Names Demos Parneros CEO

Thu, 27 Apr 2017 20:20:19 GMT

*B&N Names Demos Parneros CEO* (http://www.publishersweekly.com/pw/by-topic/industry-news/people/article/73449-b-n-names-its-coo-demos-parneros-ceo.html) ---Quote--- Barnes & Noble has named Demos Parneros its new CEO, replacing Len Riggio who has held that position on an interim basis since Ron Boire was dismissed last August, after less than one year on the job. Parneros joined B&N last November when he was named chief operating officer. Riggio praised Parneros in a March conference call with analysts discussing third quarter results. While saying he was enjoying his time as CEO, Riggio added that he thought Parneros was doing a great and should be considered a top candidate to be the new CEO. ---End Quote--- ---Quote--- Parneros said he will continue B&N's omnichannel approach to bookselling, but suggested that could undergo some changes. "Differrent retailers have different definitions of what omnichannel means," he said. But B&N will remain committed to offering its customers e-books through the Nook. "Selling e-books Is an important part of the end-to-end value proposition that we offer customers," he said. ---End Quote---



sales of consumer ebooks down 17%, sales of physical books up 8%

Thu, 27 Apr 2017 14:21:48 GMT

How eBooks lost their shine: 'Kindles now look clunky and unhip' (https://www.theguardian.com/books/2017/apr/27/how-ebooks-lost-their-shine-kindles-look-clunky-unhip-) ---Quote--- Ten years ago, when the Kindle launched, the idea was miraculous. Here was the ability to carry hundreds of books enfolded in a tiny slip of plastic, countless stories in a few hundred grams. - A decade on, lay a Kindle next to a smartphone or tablet and it looks so much older, while the reading experience it delivers has scarcely progressed. “It was new and exciting,” says Cathryn Summerhayes, a literary agent at Curtis Brown. “But now they look so clunky and unhip, don’t they? I guess everyone wants a piece of trendy tech and, unfortunately, there aren’t trendy tech reading devices... ---End Quote--- ---Quote--- Another thing that has happened is that books have become celebrated again as objects of beauty. They are coveted in their own right, while ebooks, which are not things of beauty, have become more expensive; a new digital fiction release is often only a pound or two cheaper than a hardback. ---End Quote--- Last paper book I bought was a technical volume; neither of these arguments resonates with me.



EU geoblocking ban

Tue, 25 Apr 2017 17:00:58 GMT

"EU lawmakers include Spotify and iTunes in geoblocking ban" http://finance.yahoo.com/news/eu-lawmakers-spotify-itunes-geoblocking-154512985.html ---Quote--- In a blow for the book publishing and music industries, European Parliament members voted to include copyright-protected content such as music, games, software and e-books in the law. ---End Quote---



Norwegian company releasing a paper tablet

Mon, 24 Apr 2017 09:06:24 GMT

* Main: https://getremarkable.com/ * Blog: https://blog.getremarkable.com/ * FAQ: https://support.getremarkable.com/hc/en-us * Pre-Order: https://getremarkable.com/pre-order ---Quote--- As a true paper person, Magnus Wanberg, the CEO and founder of reMarkable, has always brought notebooks and stacks of paper with him to every class or meeting. In 2013, Magnus, together with the rest of the reMarkable team, set out to create a connected and limitless digital paper experience. The first digital paper tablet for reading, writing and sketching. ---End Quote--- It's pricy at (regular: $716, pre-order: $429) but with a 10 inch sceen + pen it might be interesting if they've managed to solve the refresh-rate of E-ink. ---Quote--- The CANVAS display was built from the ground-up together with our R&D partner E Ink, partially powered by E Ink Carta generation electronic paper. ---End Quote--- I would have to see some demos of the tablet in actual use before deciding if it's worth the money. Specs: *Size and Weight* * 177 x 256 x 6.7mm (6.9 x 10.1 x .26 inches) * Approximately 350 gram (.77 pounds) *CANVAS display* * 10.3” monochrome digital paper display (no colors) * 1872x1404 resolution (226 DPI) * Partially powered by E-ink Carta technology * Multi-point capacitive touch * No glass parts, virtually unbreakable * Paper-like surface friction *Pen* * No battery, setup or pairing required * Special high-friction pen tip * Tilt detection * 2048 levels of pressure sensitivity *Storage and RAM* * 8 GB internal storage (100,000 pages) * 512 MB DDR3L RAM *Connectivity* * Wi-Fi connected *Battery* * Rechargeable (Micro USB) * 3000 mAh *Processor* * 1 GHz ARM A9 CPU *Operating system* * Codex, a custom Linux-based OS optimized for low-latency e-paper *Document support* * PDF and ePUB, with more formats to be announced *Menu language* * English only Image: https://usercontent.mobileread.org/proxy/PBYwdAhCrfd-7d-j_ndA3jwJnpk/aHR0cHM6Ly9yZW1hcmthYmxlLmltZ2l4Lm5ldC9yYXN0ZXJzL3JlbWFya2FibGUtcmVhZC5qcGc_cT01MCZ3PTQxNy4wOCZkcHI9MQ#https://remarkable.imgix.net/rasters/remarkable-read.jpg?q=50&w=417.08&dpr=1



#readathon -- read for charity

Fri, 21 Apr 2017 19:46:36 GMT

I just stumbled over this: http://readwell.penguinrandomhouse.com/ If you read samples of books, Penguin will donate books to Save the children. I've read a few of the shorter samples and found one book I'll probably buy -- which of course is what Penguin wants, but hey, if I can discover tempting books and help a good cause at the same time, I'm not objecting :) Note: It only lasts until the 23rd, so don't wait too long if you want to do a good deed by reading.