Sunday, February 1, 2015

What is an e-reader?


There is a ton of confusion in the journalism and research industry on an e-reader actually is. The vast majority of people think that if you can can read an e-book on something, it makes it an e-reader.

Mainstream media such as the BBC and Thompson Reuters often release stories on how a tablet and an e-reader is the same thing. Their reports are crafted in such a way that it convinces people that an iPad or an Android tablet is an e-reader, just because you can read books on them. This is certainly not the case. e-Reader technology is quite different than a smartphone or tablet on a fundamental level.

e-Readers for the most part employ technology from e-Ink. This is as close as you can get to mirroring real paper. Power is not generated unless the screen is being refreshed in some capacity, whether its turning a page or accessing the settings menus. Unlike LCD tablets, e-readers do not have light emitting from behind the screens into your eyes. Instead, they have small LED lights on the bottom of the bezel, that project light evenly across the screen. e-Readers also have tremendous battery life, with the average unit lasting a month or two.

Tablets utilize LCD technology that have light emitting from behind the screens into your eyes. The display is basically being generated at around 60 HZ, and flashes so fast that it is not perceivable by your eyes. Have you ever watched the news or a television show where they are interviewing someone sitting in front of a computer and their monitor is flashing constantly? This is because the camera and the computer screen both are refreshing at different rates and this is what you are staring at all day.

Tablets do not really do a good job at reading in low-light conditions or at night. Some e-book apps have nighttime reading  mode, which makes the background black and the text white.  There has been many reports issued over the years on how reading at night causes the suppression of melatonin. This is why people who spend a lot of time staring at their tablets or computer monitors tend to be considered night owls.

In the video below, we demonstrate the main differences between an e-reader and a tablet. Hopefully this dispels any misconceptions that people may have regarding the two technologies.

What is an e-reader? is a post from: Good e-Reader

Japanese Manga Sales have Increased 1% in 2014


Manga sales in Japan has increased 1% in 2014 and the modest growth was attributed to top sellers including Haikyu!! and Ao Haru Ride, both had very successful TV anime or live-action film adaptations last year, in addition to the continuously popular series like One Piece and Hajime Isayama’s Attack on Titan.

The vast majority of manga sales in Japan only stem from a few perennial bestsellers. The titles that sell really well, blow away anything that Marvel or DC does in the United States. In the US, if a comic sells over 100,000 copies it is considered a bestseller. Over in Japan things are quite a bit different.

One Piece sold 11,885,957 copies in 2014, while Attack on Titan proved to be quite popular, selling 11,728,368 titles. Haikyu!! managed to sell a staggering 8,283,709 copies and upstart Tokyo Ghoul sold over 6,946,203.

The manga publishing industry has firmly relied on print sales in order to generate the their revenue, but digital is starting to take off in a big way.  New research has reported that manga accounts for 80% of all digital book sales in Japan. Digital has risen 20% from April 2013 to March 2014  and the entire net worth of the industry has said to be valued at $540 million US.

Japanese Manga Sales have Increased 1% in 2014 is a post from: Good e-Reader

Romance Still Tops Bestsellers at Smashwords

eBook distribution platform Smashwords has forged a lot of the paths that self-published authors have taken, and has provided a lot of groundbreaking data to help authors form career plans that may or may not include the status quo. One of the many sources of information that Smashwords provides the industry as a whole is a look at its bestsellers lists broken down for the year.

With more than 340,000 books currently available in its virtual catalog, it’s surprising that readers have put romance on top despite the widely-known truth that romance fans devour content at rates that dwarf other genre fans. Of the top 25 books sold in 2014 through the site, sixteen of them were romance novels, while three of the top 25 spots went to historical fiction; in fact, the top five books included three works of historical fiction by the same author, Shayne Parkinson.

CEO and founder Mark Coker had some interesting insights, which should come as no surprise from a company so focused on fact-based sales data that authors can use. All but four of these top books not only were part of a series, but also had at least one title in the series offered for free.

The coming year promises to be huge for Smashwords in ways that don’t just involve lust and bodices, of course. Coker has already unveiled a few hints at what to expect in 2015, and while critics could argue these are just more of the same from the previous year, 2014 was pretty incredible for the company. At least the platform is going with what works and growing in directions that have already proven lucrative for authors.

In 2015, Smashwords plans to open up even more distribution channels for authors and rights holders, unveil new price management tools (in keeping with the company’s open-book glimpse at how pricing affects authors’ sales), and perhaps in the best news of all to anyone who’s been frustrated by the upload process, there are anticipated upgrades to the infamous meatgrinder process that allows anyone from virtually anywhere to craft a quality ebook from their manuscript document.

Romance Still Tops Bestsellers at Smashwords is a post from: Good e-Reader

Digital Magazines as Marketing, Information Tools

eReading in Public
Most consumers may know of digital magazines for their information and entertainment values, but a whole new market has opened up for the category. Developers who care creating app-based, easily accessed digital titles are also using them for their marketing value in much the same way they would have once paid to advertise.

One such magazine is Arizona State University‘s Thrive digital magazine. While it’s not at all uncommon for a university to publish a quarterly or even monthly magazine, typically targeted at alumni in order to keep them up to date on university activities while demonstrating why their generous donations are so necessary, Thrive’s digital magazine is free for everyone to use on the iPad. This could mean a far greater amount of information traffic and an important step in reaching out to prospective students without coming across like a commercial.

According to the announcement from, "This is an innovative and dynamic presentation of ASU stories of success, community impact, research breakthroughs, personal profiles and more," said Dan Dillon, ASU chief marketing officer. "There is a tremendous audience of iPad users who demand quality and convenience in the delivery of subject matter that matches their interest areas. Just as these consumers are on the cutting edge of technology use, this magazine will present ASU in a convenient and completely engaging cutting-edge format."

One of the great  features about this type of information promotion is the value-added intentional advertising it offers. Readers seeking out the digital magazine will stay connected to a variety of university topics, while those who are not yet stakeholders in ASU can see the benefits of a stronger relationship to the school.

As more and more digital users become accustomed to getting their news and information for free online, their attitudes towards advertising are shifting, too. Consumers understand that advertising is what pays for the content and allows it to be offered for free, but that doesn’t mean the advertising doesn’t need to be informative and unobtrusive. It should be enjoyable to read the information when trying to reach out to a new customer base, rather than an annoyance that has to be tolerated.

Digital magazines and newspapers have seen a wider adoption in terms of being used as a value-added tool. A number of service and business sectors have already turned to this format to entice new clients or customers, including the hospitality industry, the library space, and now education.

Digital Magazines as Marketing, Information Tools is a post from: Good e-Reader