Sunday, June 8, 2014

Google Now Reminds You of Your Transit Stop

googlenowtransitalarmOn more than one occasion, through my mass-transit riding days, I have had my nose in a book and not had my eyes on exactly where on the route we were. Fortunately for me, I read now using my smartphone or tablet and Google Now has added an alarm for saved locations… so when you are getting close to home (or work, or your BFF’s house, or, or, or…) you can be alerted and -become- alert.

Next to the Parking Location card, this is my favourite addition to Google Now –anything that keeps me on track while my mind is in a thousand different places is of great use in my life!

Do you have a day-to-day task that you wish Google Now could help with?

Google Now Reminds You of Your Transit Stop is a post from: Good e-Reader

How Neonode Fell Victim to a Crashing e-Reader Industry


Neonode is best known for their IR touchscreen technology that mainstream e-readers employed, before most of them gravitated towards capacitive touch. The Amazon Kindle Touch, Kobo Glo, Sony PRS-T1 and similar models all employed Infrared sensors alongside the bezel. This provided these companies a dramatically affordable way to incorporate touchscreen technology into e-readers that were at war with each other over lower prices. The rise and fall of Neonode reads like a textbook of the e-reader industry as a whole.

Neonode is a publically traded company and files all of their financial information on a quarterly and yearly basis with the SEC. Their accounts receivable info reads like a textbook on the rise and fall of the e-reader industry. In 2010 the company garnered a paltry $200 thousand and the companies fortunes spiked dramatically in 2011 with over $3.3 million in licensing fees. Revenue dropped by over a million in 2012 when they earned $2.1 million and in 2013 they received $1 million.

This yearly financial returns are not indicative to just the eBook reader industry, as they have their hands in cell phones, tablets and a number of other enterprises. When it comes to e-readers in 2011 they had eleven contracts signed with the whos who of industry. This included the Sony Pocket Edition, Sony Touch Edition, Daily and the PRS-T1 model. Other notables include the Kobo eReader Touch and Barnes & Noble Simple Touch Reader. In 2012 Amazon accounted for 46% of their revenue, followed by Kobo at 16% and Sony at 14%. During 2013 Neonode lost Amazon as their primary customer and instead is leaning on Kobo (19%) Leapfrog (16%) and Sony (15%) for their e-reader revenue. Finally in the first quarter of 2014, Leap Frog is their biggest customer (30%) followed by Sony Corporation (16%) and older Kobo devices (11%).

Kobo is using their older Glo and Touch Screen e-readers in their efforts to expand into international markets, because of the lower price point on outdated components. Sony on the other hand have all but bowed out of the e-reader industry with the total abandonment of their Sony Reader bookstore in North America, Europe and Australia, but still sell the PRS-T3 in many retail environments. Leapfrog primarily sells kids tablets in retail stores like Toys R US and bigbox stores.

Neonode Z-Force technology is currently being phased out by many of the other eBook vendors in the world. Amazon, Kobo, and Tolino are all employing capacitive touchscreen technology and therefore not paying Neonode licensing fees. The lack of income is not stopping them from spending $1.8 million in the last three months, compared to $1.6 million for the same period in 2013. This has led to contracts with HP for multisense touchscreen printers and developing patents for virtual keyboards.

What is the future of Neonode in the e-Reader industry? Likely they are abandoning innovation in this sector and instead are focusing on zForce AIR Technology for phones, zForce NEMO Technology for 100% Waterproof Devices and MultiSensing technology for in-car systems.

How Neonode Fell Victim to a Crashing e-Reader Industry is a post from: Good e-Reader

Kobo Website Format Tip: How to Identify ePub eBooks

When Kobo redesigned their website last year, they removed the section from their ebook description pages that specified what format the ebook was available in. Most of Kobo’e ebooks are available for download in ePub format, so it’s not an issue most of the time. But not all of Kobo’s ebooks are available in ePub, […]

eBook Review: Choosing a Self-Publishing Service by ALLi

The Alliance of Independent Authors has released its recent guide to all things self-publishing, and this year awarded its inaugural service award to Smashwords and its founder, Mark Coker, for the work the company has done in furthering the cause of indie authorship. Good e-Reader spoke to ALLi’s founder and director Orna Ross about the guide, and what it means for authors who are considering self-publishing.

"I'm personally looking forward to meeting ALLi members, advisors and friends in New York" Orna Ross, director of ALLi said, speaking of the book’s official launch at BookExpo. "And delighted to be launching the latest update of our services guide at the new Author Hub at BEA. Many authors feel paralysed by choice when faced with the array of self-publishing alternatives before them. Our watchdog team have done the hard work of research and comparison, so we can point a clear pathway through the rapidly changing, and often confusing, landscape of author services."

According to the book’s introduction, the internet is lousy with “sharks in the waters,” individuals and companies alike who have made a reputation for taking thousands of dollars from authors who dared to hope that someone would read their books. Instead of an enjoyable book, these authors are left bankrupt while holding a product that is barely worth the paper it’s printed on. ALLi’s guidebook helps alleviate a lot of those problems by rating different well-known companies, as well as offer a wealth of information for authors who are starting out.

“The guidebook, compiled by ALLi's watchdog team – including Victoria Strauss, Mick Rooney and Giacomo Giammatteo – is a comparison of a representative sample of the key self-publishing service players. Featuring case studies, service analysis and the experiences of author-publishers and ALLi members, the guide is a timely and indispensable source of knowledge for anyone considering self-publishing as an option.”

This resource guide is available now in both digital and print by clicking HERE.

eBook Review: Choosing a Self-Publishing Service by ALLi is a post from: Good e-Reader

The Real Reasons Why Adults Read YA Fiction


A 2012 study found that 55% of all Young Adult fiction was purchased by adults and many journalists lately have been writing either for or against if adults should be consuming childrens and YA Fiction at the levels they are. The deeper question is why our culture encourages us to perpetually relive our teenage years.

One of the reasons why YA Fiction is so popular is due to our culture encouraging an unnatural and prolonged adolescence. Not so long ago, the average American man in his 20s had achieved most of the milestones of adulthood: a high-school diploma, financial independence, marriage and children. Today, most men in their 20s hang out in a novel sort of limbo, a hybrid state of semi-hormonal adolescence and responsible self-reliance.

Instead of going to school and getting a degree, getting married and having kids men for the most part are tuning in to cable channels like Comedy Central, the Cartoon Network and Spike, whose shows reflected the adolescent male preferences of its targeted male audiences. They watch movies with overgrown boy actors like Steve Carell, Luke and Owen Wilson, Jim Carrey, Adam Sandler, Will Farrell and Seth Rogen, cheering their awesome car crashes, fart jokes, breast and crotch shots, beer pong competitions and other frat-boy pranks. Our culture actually encourages men to live and relive their teenage years perpetually by playing video games, smoking pot and reading the same fantasy, science-fiction or cyberpunk books they grew up with.

Women's prime symptom of prolonged adolescence is glimpsed in their friendships with other young women. Perhaps in their search for faithful, committed relationships, young women are using their female friends as replacement "spouses." In their fear of losing another relationship, young women are clutching on to their female friends as tightly as a little child holds a plastic trinket. In their determination to not let go, they simultaneously are unable to open their hands to receive new friendships. When these new friendships include the possibility of a romantic relationship with a young man, the result is often Mr. Committed walking away wondering why the girl he pursued won't open to receive his gift of self.

There is also a fear of vulnerability in most women these days. Rather than expose a desire for love, women take what they have and hoard, hold and suffocate in a frenzied panic not to lose what they have. Rather than open themselves to the possibility of hurt, disappointment or rejection, young women create a sense of commitment, possession and independence that unsuspectingly can counter their desires for love. This is the main reason why 59% of Romance and Erotica books are published by indie authors, the vast majority who are women. Romances and fairytales have given us a thoroughly impractical perception of love and relationships. Women continue to devour Veronica Roth, EL James, Suzanne Collins romantic interludes because it cuddles them like their favorite warm blanket.

I think reading YA Fiction exclusively is degrading the quality of literature that gets published on a monthly or yearly basis. Major publishers out of New York tend to put out books that they know will sell and a number of great titles are likely never going to get the greenlight to be produced. Instead new books are being billed as the Next Hunger Games or the next Divergent.

The Real Reasons Why Adults Read YA Fiction is a post from: Good e-Reader

Kobo Aura and Tolino Vision Nighttime Reading Tests


Amazon, Kobo and Tolino all compete in the lucrative German eBook market and these three companies also make hardware. The Tolino was made as a homegrown alternative to North American entities trying to take over the market. The Tolino Vision is currently the best e-reader the alliance has produced and employs bleeding edge hardware and screen technology. Today, we check out the front-lit displays both of these models use to see if there is a clear cut winner for reading in the dark.

Kobo Aura and Tolino Vision Nighttime Reading Tests is a post from: Good e-Reader

Tolino Vision and Kindle Paperwhite 2 – Nighttime Reading Test


Welcome to another installment of our Nighttime Reading Test series. Today we are looking at the brand new Tolino Vision and the Amazon Kindle Paperwhite 2. Both of these e-readers are doing battle in the critical German market and are easily accessible. The premise of this video is to show you how both perform in the dark with the front-lit displays they employ. You will get a sense on light distribution on the screen and if there is a clear winner.

Tolino Vision and Kindle Paperwhite 2 – Nighttime Reading Test is a post from: Good e-Reader

Weekend Sales Roundup: $8 Android Tablet, Kindle and Nook Deals

Just when I thought I had discovered a really cheap tablet, the new $49 Android 4.4 KitKat tablet at Best Buy, I happen to stumble across a deal at Newegg for an $8 tablet with free shipping. Granted the device is refurbished and it only has a 4.3-inch screen, and it’s more than likely a […]

Submit Your App to the Good e-Reader App Store


If you are an app developer or an established studio the Good e-Reader Android App Store has a free submission program. The Developer Portal allows you to upload and keep your Android app current for an audience of over 80,000,000 yearly visitors. According to One Platform Foundation, “Submitting your app to alternative app stores will increase expected downloads for your app by more than 200% in reference to Google Play only.

The Good e-Reader Android App Store allows developers to sign up for a free account and upload your apps to a bright and vibrant ecosystem. There is support for both free and paid apps, and developers currently enjoy a 100% royalty paid instantly to their PAYPAL accounts upon a customers purchase.

We have great tools to make your app stand out in the crowd with icons, 3 slideshow images, Youtube Video and over 72 categories to select from. If you want to put a priority on maximum visibility you can opt into our promotional banner space or elect to include it in our weekly Editors Choice program.

Good e-Reader is currently the second largest App Store in Canada, next to Blackberry World. On a worldwide stage, we are in the Top 10 of most widely used stores. Our dedicated client has an active userbase of over a million monthly users and our website has five million a month on average. Good e-Reader currently has over 31,000 Android and Blackberry 10 apps and will be supporting Tizen in the near future.

Submit Your App to the Good e-Reader App Store is a post from: Good e-Reader

New Android Feature “Nearby” Expected at Google I/O 2014

locationServicesWith all of the hype and excitement surrounding Apple’s WWDC 2014 conference, it may have been easy to forget that Google’s I/O 2014 conference is right around the corner and happening later this month. One of the features expected to be announced is an extension to Location Services called Nearby, which would make it easier for Android devices to interact with others in close proximity.

While the exact details of how Nearby would work aren’t yet known, it is expected to be a combination of Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and your microphone (taking advantage of signals imperceptible to the human ear but picked up by other Android devices).

What’s it good for? Hard to say at this point, but the potential is exciting (smartphones getting smarter)! Despite possible privacy concerns, it may make it easier to locate missing phones, missing persons, provide directions… sky is the limit! One suggestion is that it would give greater accuracy to reminders, like: make sure I tell so-in-so this tidbit the next time I see them –for instance.

New Android Feature “Nearby” Expected at Google I/O 2014 is a post from: Good e-Reader