Friday, May 23, 2014

PriceLocal Seeks to Battle Amazon Prices and Support Local Business


Borders Bookstores were the first national chain that went bankrupt due to the rock bottom prices that Amazon provided. Whether customers bought eBooks or physical books bookstore chains felt like they were basically a showroom showroom. Customers would often say “I can get this exact same book for 40% off and you guys only sell it for 30 percent off.” In order to combat the showroom mentality EX-Border employees have formed a new company called PriceLocal.

Local companies can now opt into the PriceLocal program to match prices found on Amazon. Users install a browser based extension and can browse Amazon deals the way they have always have. If they find something they like, they can access a drop down menu listing local companies that sell the same product. With a simple button click the companies are notified via email or text message. That’s when the owner chooses one of the four options of matching, denying the match, substituting for a similar product or ordering the product.

Former Borders attorney Matt Chosid is based near the former corporate headquarters in Ann Arbor Michigan. Twelve local companies have signed on to PriceLocal in a pilot test. A number of clothing, shoes, jewelry, pet supplies, homewares, hardware, sporting goods, and electronics and appliance stores have opted in.

One of the benefits of PriceLocal is the ability to have the product in your hand that very day. This saves on having to wait on something being delivered and have immediate gratification. “People are already doing their research online, and we could basically turn the idea of showrooming on its head where people do their browsing and research online and instead of researching in the store and buying online, they could research online and buy in local stores.”

There is a stigma in American culture where you can’t bargain for items at your local Best Buy or Macy’s. This gives Amazon an advantage where users can use a bar scanning app to find the best online deal. PriceLocal puts the power back into the hands of local businesses to be able to match specific prices for customers using this service. Giving the odd big deal really isn’t that bad for an indie business, certainly a better bet than giving lots of deals via Groupon.

PriceLocal Seeks to Battle Amazon Prices and Support Local Business is a post from: Good e-Reader

Top 10 Android Apps of the Week – May 23 2014


The makers of Candy Crush Saga have released new match game called Bubble Witch 2 and a number of new lifestyle apps have been released this week. Today, we look at the Top 10 New Android Apps to come out this week. All of these apps are available via the Good e-Reader App Store.

PingTune Music Messenger – PingTune is The Music Messenger for Android and other smartphones. PingTune uses Wi-Fi (when available) and 3G to browse music on YouTube and SoundCloud. You can share music, videos and messages instantly with your friends. Music addicts and music lovers alike can now find, share and chat about their favourite songs, new artists and bands.

addappt: up-to-date contacts – Founded by early Microsoft and LinkedIn employees, addappt's iPhone app has been recognized by Walt Mossberg of the WSJ, NYT, Forbes, ABC, CNN, Business Insider, ZDNet, The Economic Times and as one of Business Insider's Top Business Apps, one of Business Insider's Best Productivity Apps and ZDNet's Best iOS Apps.

Godzilla – Smash3 – Unleash the power of Godzilla and pursue the dangerous MUTO monsters in this unique mix of jaw-dropping 3D action and challenging puzzles. Control each stomp, slash, and bite by matching – or SMASHING – puzzle tiles to drive Godzilla through 80 levels in cities across the globe.

Bubble Witch Saga 2 – Stella and her cats need your help to fend off the dark spirits that are plaguing their land. Travel the realm bursting as many bubbles as you can in this exciting adventure. Win levels and free Witch Country piece by piece.

EA King of the Course Golf – Play through fast-paced golf challenges on the most the most spectacular PGA TOUR courses in the world, including TPC Sawgrass and Pinehurst No. 2. Fire up powerful boosts and compete with friends to win crowns and become King of the Course!

Secret - Secret is a new way to share what you're thinking and feeling with your friends.

Swarm – Swarm, the new app from Foursquare, is the fastest way to keep up and meet up with your friends. With Swarm, you can easily see who's out nearby and who wants to hang out later.

OZ Challenge – The Wizard of Oz comes to life in this first of its kind adventure game! Join Dorothy and her friends on a magical journey! Complete multiple levels and fun-filled activities as you help Tin Man, Lion, and Scarecrow meet the Wizard of Oz! Enter a wood chopping contest and avoid being hit by the cyclone!

Downcount – The simplest possible way to create daily countdowns, period.

Archos Connected Self – The ARCHOS Connected Self application and ARCHOS Connected Self objects help you to stay in shape easily. Thanks to the indicators and graphs you can easily follow your evolution and adapt your lifestyle to improve your well-being.

Top 10 Android Apps of the Week – May 23 2014 is a post from: Good e-Reader

Publishing Startups Unveiled for Book Expo America


Book Expo America is doing something different this year and is putting the emphasis on young publishing startups. Last year they co-sponsored a hackathon that happened at the Alley in New York. This year, everything is happening right in the convention hall. As the publishing industry evolves to embrace the digital revolution, BEA is becoming a space where companies merging innovation, technology and books can connect with industry giants.

BEA 2014 attendees can watch as startups face off in the BookExpo Startup Challenge on Thursday, May 29th. All selected participants will be exhibiting at Startup Alley in the Digital Zone. Six finalists will be chosen to present to a panel of judges on the Downtown Stage at 2:30pm for the chance to win cash prizes of $10,000 for first place, sponsored by Ingram Content Group, and $5,000 for second place, sponsored by Sourcebooks. Both winning teams will also receive an introductory offer to GLG Share, which connects high-growth startups with the world's largest membership for professional learning and expertise.

ACTIVE SPUD ( is a 'page to life' company that publishes experience-based fitness and wellness books for children.

ALTA EDITIONS ( publishes interactive online cookbooks with a subscription-based offering.

BENEATH THE INK ( provides exclusive technology that makes it easy for authors to embed additional content for readers to access which give readers more insight into the characters, places, concepts and words without leaving the page.

BOOKMATE ( offers a subscription model for e-books directed towards users in emerging markets where piracy issues are rife.

BOOKOPOLIS ( is a book discovery tool and COPPA-compliant social network which encourages young students to  develop a love of reading for fun.

CHINESE CUBES ( allows consumers to learn Chinese through fun stories at every level by creating an interactive reading and learning experience.

ENSKRI  ( has created a patent pending system that  allows purchasers of ebooks and  other digital  items to add  personalized  messages containing video, text and images for gifting or other purposes.

IFLIST ( is committed to providing every book and story a platform to garner public support with the ultimate goal of getting optioned.  It also builds a valuable, creative platform and informative resource for the arts and entertainment industry.

KADAXIS ( Kadaxis helps publishers to dramatically increase the long term ROI on a title, by analyzing the full text of books to derive metadata and increase discoverability.

LIBRARY FOR ALL ( developed a Library application that delivers ebooks to low-cost devices such as tablets, mobile phones, and PCs. It is accessible in low-bandwidth environments via mobile phone networks.

MOUNTCASTLE ( is an independent educational children's book publishing company that also develops supplemental digital product to enhance learning through interactive content.

NOVELRY ( is a discovery engine for readers who want the convenience of online shopping but aren't satisfied with computer-generated recommendations.

PUBSLUSH ( is a crowdfunding and marketing platform for the literary world. This niche platform provides a way to raise money and gauge audience response for literacy-based projects while supporters make financial pledges, bringing ideas to life.

QLOVI ( Qlovi is a literacy innovation company that provides free software for k-12 teachers alongside time-base eBook purchases. Qlovi’s software allows teachers to assess and track students’ reading and writing skills to accelerate achievement.

RIFFLE ( provides tools for creating and curating reviews, reading lists, book quotes, recommendations, and author interviews. It's a social media platform and word-of-mouth network that pushes book related content into Twitter, Tumblr and Facebook.

SCREWPULP ( is an eBook marketplace for self-published authors that utilizes a demand-driven pricing model.

SNAPPLIFY ( is a digital publishing solutions provider enabling publishers to sell their content globally.

Publishing Startups Unveiled for Book Expo America is a post from: Good e-Reader

PocketBook InkPad 840 Has 8-inch 1600 x 1200 E Ink Screen

PocketBook revealed a line of new ebook readers for 2014 this past week, including the PocketBook Aqua, PocketBook Ultra, and PocketBook CAD Reader. Possibly the most interesting of the bunch is the PocketBook InkPad 840. What makes the PocketBook InkPad so interesting is the screen that it uses. It’s not the first 8-inch ebook reader, […]

PocketBook Ultra 650 eBook Reader Has Carta Screen and 5MP Camera

Among PocketBook’s new line of ebook readers for 2014 is the PocketBook Ultra. The new device has some unique features, most notably it’s the first E Ink ebook reader to have a built-in camera. PocketBook plans to release the PocketBook Ultra in late June 2014. The retail price is set at 8990 rubles in Russia—which […]

Reveal Your Secrets with Anonymous Sharing App

Anonymish Sharing App

What is your deepest and darkest secret? What if you had the opportunity to broadcast your secret to the world without having to associate yourself with it or hold yourself accountable for it? Better yet, what if you could read the juiciest tidbits coming from the minds of others? Earlier this year, the Anonymish Sharing app, Secret, gave us the opportunity to do all of these things (and now it is also available for your Android device)!

The app itself is simple: put words to paper (so to speak) and unload your burdens without judgement. Want to add a dramatic flair? Customize your canvas with photos, colour backdrops, textures, and moods. Once your secret is out there, it can be read by your friends (though you have to try and guess which one confessed) –or rest safely in the global feed to be read by interested strangers.

Some secrets are to be expected: people having affairs, money wasted, things stolen, qualifications exaggerated… others are more voyeuristic and satisfying (but you will have to download the app and give it a test drive to fully understand what I am saying).

With over $10 million USD in capital raised so far (much of it from high-profile investors such as Google Ventures, Ashton Kutcher of A-Grade Investments, and Joe Montana) it is no Secret that our thoughts and feelings will continue to have a stage as much as a home for the foreseeable future.

Original release is in English-only, but ambitions run high to release versions worldwide in the native languages of each location. You can download it from the Good e-Reader App Store.

So… what would you like to get off your chest?

Reveal Your Secrets with Anonymous Sharing App is a post from: Good e-Reader

PocketBook Aqua 640: Waterproof and Dustproof eBook Reader (Video)

Earlier this year PocketBook announced that they would be releasing a waterproof and dustproof ebook reader called the PocketBook Aqua. PocketBook plans to release their new water-resistant ebook reader in Russia a few weeks from now in June 2014. It will cost 6990 rubles—that’s equivalent to just over $200 US dollars. The PocketBook Aqua is […]

Tolkien’s Translation of Beowulf Just Released

Yesterday was the release day for J.R.R. Tolkien’s 1926 translation of Beowulf. Tolkien is of course famous for writing The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings series and for creating the setting of those stories known as Middle-earth. Christopher Tolkien, J.R.R. Tolkien’s son, has taken to the task of editing and releasing his father’s […]

Adventures in Raspberry Pi kits in the Swag Store

As many of you know, our very own Carrie Anne Philbin spent most of last year writing Adventures in Raspberry Pi. For some reason she keeps reminding me that, with 4.8 stars out of 5, it’s currently the highest-rated Raspberry Pi book on Amazon; I can’t imagine why.

Five star, schmive star

Five star, schmive star

The last few chapters of the book concentrate on hardware interfacing using the Pi, and require a variety of electronic components. To make your life easier, we’ve assembled all the components into one convenient kit, which you can now buy in the Swag Store.

Cables and buttons and screens, oh my

Cables and buttons and screens, oh my

Does your library offer an eReading Room for kids and teens?

We all know that the internet is full of material we don’t want kids to see. This is true even on the hallowed virtual shelves of libraries – among the abundance of classic titles, poetry, historical fiction and adventure novels lurk romance titles with explicit, shirtless embraces displayed prominently on the jacket cover. Not that there’s anything wrong with these titles – in fact, so many adults indulge in romance reading that it is one of the most popular genres. But, that doesn’t mean kids should have to see this material when looking for their next eBook to read.

That’s why OverDrive created a safe, kid-friendly environment for their worldwide network of public library partners with the eReading Room. You can separate juvenile and young adult eBooks on your digital library website to create a browsing, sampling, borrowing and reading experience just for your young patrons – without the risk of them running across adult material. Even better, the eReading Room lets parents or kids filter their results by grade level, reading level, subject or customizable collections.

Intrigued? Learn more by watching the video below (trust me, it’s worth it – the kids are so cute!) and viewing this free instructional webinar. Then contact your Collection Development Specialist to sign up for your eReading Room.


Heather Tunstall is the Public Relations Specialist at OverDrive.


BitLit, Kobo Founder Raise Seed Funding for Print-to-eBook App

eBooks suffered the same initial criticism that happens whenever a new movie format is launched: do I have to buy all of my favorite books over again, just to enjoy them in digital? Thanks to BitLit and its latest round of funding, that answer is no.

BitLit bundles ebooks and print by having readers “prove” they own the print edition. Users simply write their names on the copyright pages of the books they wish to also own as ebooks and then upload those pictures through BitLit. It’s then up to the publishers to determine how much the ebook will cost, and in many cases, the ebook is made available free for having purchased the print title.

The concept is pretty innovative, and now has the backing of 3 Angels, the 2014 startup that was founded by former Kobo CEO and founder Michael Serbinis, who said of BitLit, “3 Angels was founded in 2014 to invest in world class teams looking to disrupt markets and change the world. BitLit supports both sides of the reading experience and allows you to enjoy the convenience of an ebook on any reading device, with the pleasure of reading the print edition at home and displaying your books on your bookshelf."

BitLit currently has around eighty-five publishers on board to offer this service to readers, with more than 10,000 titles already available for bundling. Of those titles, around thirty percent are already available free to readers who prove they’ve purchased the print edition.

"We are thrilled to have raised our seed financing from investors with backgrounds in both technology and publishing," says Peter Hudson, BitLit's co-founder and CEO. The seed financing also includes investments from BDC Venture Capital, Mike Volker (WUTIF fund) and Jim Fletcher, a Vancouver super angel.

BitLit, Kobo Founder Raise Seed Funding for Print-to-eBook App is a post from: Good e-Reader

Android Jelly Bean 4.3 SDK Released for Blackberry 10


The Blackberry Playbook and Blackberry 10 smartphones all have the Android Runtime built into the OS that gives developers an easy avenue to port their apps over for inclusion into Blackberry World. The most recent 10.2 update for all current generation phones can now load in APK files directly, which simplifies the entire process. Today, Blackberry has confirmed the Android runtime will soon be updated to Jellybean 4.3, which will allow more apps to be able to run effectively.

The new Blackberry SDK is out today for developers to incorporate it into their apps. The runtime has been upgraded from Jelly Bean 4.2.2 and with it users can log in to Android apps that require authentication right from the BB10 accounts settings page. Users can also manage which apps have access to which accounts. The SDK also has support for NFC and Bluetooth LE.

To get started, developers will have to grab the BlackBerry 10.3 Beta SDK OS for BlackBerry 10 devices. The company's Android Tooling page has updated command-line tools and plugins for Android Studio or Eclipse to develop Android apps for BB 10.

All Blackberry phones should receive the 10.3 update in the coming months. The big rumor from CES 2014 was that Blackberry was creating a dedicated Android section in Blackberry World, to have control over app distribution. Right now the vast majority of phone users are using alternative markets such as Amazon or Good e-Reader.

Android Jelly Bean 4.3 SDK Released for Blackberry 10 is a post from: Good e-Reader

Self-e Plans to Curate Self-Published Titles for Library Inclusion

With exciting new announcements like the one this week from Smashwords, who’s now partnered with OverDrive to add an additional 200,000 self-published titles to the 22,000 partner libraries’ ebook catalogs, one concern does come up: who will read and approve of all of those titles? While self-published books have always had a bad reputation for low quality, even the fact that OverDrive and Smashwords have partnered on this demonstrates that some of that content is high interest, high quality work that library patrons will enjoy. But how do librarians sift through the massive amount of material and makes purchasing decisions?

Library Journal and BiblioBoard have now announced the launch of Self-e, a site which will curate and vet this content so libraries can feel good about purchasing ebooks without spending hours of manpower on every single title. This free service will offer libraries a catalog of content to choose from that has been approved, and authors’ works can be included regardless of which platform they chose to self-publish.

“If selected via Library Journal's SELF-e curation process, the author's ebooks will become part of a unique discovery platform for participating public libraries across the United States that enables patrons to read ebooks on any device, at any time. This free service is available to all self-published authors, no matter which self-publishing service(s) they use. All that is required is an engaging story, and your ebook file.”

One of the more frustrating truths about self-publishing and libraries is that indie authors have had a hard time getting their books into their own local libraries, as budgets are small and the risk of insult when the book is of poor quality is high. Instead, libraries can simply tell local authors that their content must be vetted through Self-e as a standard policy; once that book is approved through the site, libraries can even promote the book to other libraries across their states.

“Additionally, the SELF-e platform will enable public libraries to take submissions from their local self-published authors and make those ebooks available to local patrons via participating public libraries throughout their state. Libraries can make these ebooks available with no checkouts or returns, and no multi-user limitations. The platform is easy to use and can accommodate any self-published author.”

The fact that LJ and BiblioBoard have decided that self-pubbed titles need a curation process is certainly going to raise some ire in the indie author community, but it shouldn’t be taken as a “prove yourself worthy” idea. Instead, the more insightful way to look at it is that at one point these books would have been barred from library access altogether. The fact that two major book industry organizations are making it possible for library patrons and self-published authors to come together at all means they recognize the worth of many indie titles.

Self-e Plans to Curate Self-Published Titles for Library Inclusion is a post from: Good e-Reader

More Compute Module docs, and an interview with James

A few days ago, we pushed out some more documentation for the forthcoming Compute Module and Compute Module IO Board, which together make up the Compute Module Development Kit. This new documentation covers power supply and sequencing requirements, temperature limits, and the process for writing an operating system image onto a module; and provides a summary of the various interfaces available on the module edge connector. Between now and the launch of the Development Kit, we’ll be releasing the CAD files for the IO Board so you’ll have something on which to base your own Compute Module projects – keep your eyes out for more.

The Compute Module and Compute Module IO Board were designed using Cadence PCB Editor. In this video, James talks with Simon Wood from Parallel Systems about his experiences designing high-tech PCBs with these tools.

Amazon Fire TV Available for Free


The Amazon Fire TV box received a tremendous amount of hype when it was first released last month. It is painfully obvious that this is one segment that Amazon has yet to really crack, like they have eBooks. In order to push out more Fire TV sales Amazon has been sending emails and snail mail letters to Prime members telling them they can trial it for free, for one month.

You can get a Free Fire TV now for one month and Amazon will pay the shipping to you. If you want to send it back, you can do so and not incur any extra charges, at the end of the month your credit card will be automatically billed.

Amazon Fire TV was originally launched in April and the Seattle based company has not divulged hardware sales. Currently it sits in the 1st position for the popular Electronics category with Google Chromecast and the Kindle e-reader rounding out the top three. If you really think about it the Fire TV has been in the Top 10 for 52 days, while Apple TV has been there for the last 792, quite telling.

You have to be a current Prime member to be eligible for the offer and reside in the US. Try clicking on THIS link to see if you are eligible for the offer.


Amazon Fire TV Available for Free is a post from: Good e-Reader