eBooks On iPhone: Not Waiting For Apple!

July 19, 2007

A reader sent me two links that are very exciting for people who are interested in ebooks on the iPhone:

Ebooks on iPhones: Seeing Is Believing

pretty as a picture: WOWIO ebooks on the iPhone

This second link is very exciting. It shows a graphic novel on the iPhone screen.

Paging Warren Ellis and John Rogers!

If I was Sony, I’d be worried about the future of the Sony Reader. Especially after Sir Howard Stringer opening his yap and dissing Steve Jobs personally! Nice way to motivate a fierce competitor, Stringer! Say buh-bye to your sinecure.

Mucho Namaste To FSJ!

June 28, 2007

Oh, I couldn’t let the day end without acknowledging His Fake Steveness!

He linked to my iPhone ebooks post on his blog here.

Some blogger says eBooks are a perfect fit for the iPhone and that we could kill Sony in that market.

What an honor!!


Will Apple Steal The eBook Limelight From Sony And Create Another Mass Market?

June 27, 2007

Microsoft gave the ebook market a shot with its Microsoft Reader (software that I actually liked using on my suicided Toshiba GENIO 550g PPC), then sort of lost interest.

Sony came on the scene with what I still consider the best damned piece of hardware and software for ebooks, The Sony Reader. But that Connect Store and desktop software ain’t no iTunes Store or iTunes software! (It is also worth noting that the desktop software is Windows-only!)

Now Apple will have a portable pocketable take-along-everywhere device in millions and millions of people’s hands in less than two days. Must I really say iPhone?

And Apple has the software and retailing advantage over Sony. Unlike Sony, it has made a success of selling videos.

I don’t think everyone wants to do nothing but listen to music, watch videos, or even access the web all the time. Two of those activities require headphones. The third — given the EDGE network — requires a bit of patience.

The missing element for the Apple iPhone is ebooks.

They are a natural for it.

And Apple is the natural company to finally break the backs of the print publishing dinosaurs and stomp down the current egregious prices for ebooks. Look at this front-page sample from the Sony Connect Store:

Robert Ludlum’s (TM) the Bourne Betrayal
Eric Van Lustbader

Print List Price: $25.99
eBook List Price: $17.99
CONNECT Discount: 20%
You Save: $3.60

PRICE: $14.39

What is wrong with that picture? Everything!

Steve Jobs has the muscle and the vision to change that.

Are you listening, Steve?

Oh My God This Is So Incredibly Surprising And Totally Unexpected: Sony To Close Connect Music And Video Services!!

June 17, 2007

Sony Connect To Close Music/Video Services; Focus on Servicing Playstation Group; 20 People To Go

The Sony Connect experiment is about get, well, disconnected: it will be winding down its music and video services in the next couple of months, and focus on servicing the Playstation group on the technical needs, paidContent.org has learned and confirmed. In an all-hands meeting yesterday in Sony’s offices, employees were told that about 20-plus jobs are being phased out during this winding-down phase as a result of this closure. The eBooks division will remain however, as it will be servicing Sony Reader product.

Well, duh!

Previously in this blog:
Memos To Sony (Part 2 in a Series)

The Book That Would Defeat The Sony Reader

May 14, 2007

The daily getTRIO.com newsletter brings this:

Steven Hall, author of The Raw Shark Texts, takes the hoariest of premises — amnesia — and through a combination of jump-off-the-page writing and a post-modern bag of tricks, delivers a smart, absorbing, mind-bending novel.

The author is consciously invoking everything from Jaws and The Matrix to the books of Haruki Murakami (Sputnik Sweetheart, for one), among the many hat-tips and clues. He does so in the service of a chap (the setting is England) named Eric Sanderson, who wakes up on the floor one day, completely unable to remember who he is or anything of his past. He finds an envelope that has been left for him by “the first Eric Sanderson,” who provides specific instructions on what to do:

“If you are reading this, I’m not around anymore. Take the phone and speed dial 1. Tell the woman who answers that you are Eric Sanderson. The woman is Dr. Randle. She’ll understand what has happened…”

Got you, didn’t he?

The Raw Shark Texts (the title is a pun — say it quickly and think of ink blots) is the author’s debut novel and there are some first-novel problems — more ambition than control, repartee between Sanderson and his girlfriend that falls flat. And if you like your mysteries neatly bundled, you may be left cold. But we think this is an enormously promising debut, not to mention a great read.

I saw this in a bookstore and got it from the NYPL. Go see it for yourself. Tell me Sony’s BBEB format wouldn’t be conquered by it! I dare ya! It has illustrations and typographic effects that I don’t think any existing markup language can handle (which, of course, begs the question: well, how was the book itself done?). It even has a flipbook animation in it! (Even though it’s in my reading queue, that’s no guarantee I’ll get to it.)

UPDATE: Hmmm… maybe not after all. I had to edit this to put in a link I missed — the author’s website! When I went there, what did I see? The flipbook animation that’s in the book itself! And typographic effects. Still, would BBEB format be able to handle that?!

SECOND UPDATE: Well shut my mouth! It got into my teeny tiny widdle brain to actually go see if the book was available for the Sony Reader. And guess what? It is! If you have it on your Sony Reader, drop me an email to let me know if it’s faithful to the printed original!

Sony Reader Is Gaining Ground

May 1, 2007

The Sony Reader

I love new toys. It had been a while (at least two weeks) since my last one. I was sitting next to Howard Morgan at a meeting catching up and he asked me if I had gotten a Sony Reader (PRS-500) yet. Both of us are voracious readers and travelers – picture me lugging at least three books with me wherever I go.

Howard said the Sony Reader had changed his reading life. I bought one online that afternoon (Sony uses Intershop software for their ecommerce – man – I’d forgotten they still existed.)

Previously in the blog:
Sony Reader Meets Inking
Purraise Da Lohrd!
I Gotcher Backlight Right Ear
Memos To Sony (Part 1 in a Series)
Sony Reader: Gizmodo’s Hands All Over
Wikipedia on Sony Reader?
Sony Reader Multi-Part Report Index
Sony Reader: Part 4 (of 4)
Sony Reader: Part 3 (of 4)
Sony Reader: Part 2 (of 4)
Sony Reader: Part 1 (of 4)
i, Reader
Digital Life: What I Saw

Sony Reader Meets Inking

March 26, 2007

Tablet Ink on E-Ink

Ladies and Gentlemen, the first instance of a Tablet PC ink blog post on a Sony Reader!

Flickr photos

— linkswipe via jkOnTheRun

Wherefore Art Thou, Zune?

March 18, 2007

Zune Really Irrelevant Product (RIP)

I have written a number of posts about the so called iPod killer, the Zune Player and it’s debut on the market. As of today, the Zune Player is a failure:

It is probably so.

First month after its debut, I saw a civilian with a Zune.

I haven’t seen one since.

For comparison, I’ve seen three Sansa e-200s in the wild.

Hell, I’ve even seen a Sony Reader in the wild — and the guy was reading it during dusk by streetlight!

Of course, everyone luvs and has an iPod.

Me? I still have my wee el cheapo jWIN.

But then I’m like that. If I were to buy something, I’d give all my file-building stalkers a fatal heart attack. Hmmm…!

Previous relevant mentions of the Zune in ths blog:
Quote Of The Day
Fake Steve Jobs Does Real Blog
Zune External Battery Reviewed
Zune Review Part 3 & 4
Zune Review Parts 1 & 2
Applenomics, Or Why Steve Jobs Will Now Hate Me For Ever And Ever
Zune: Yawn
Ten-Buck Camera Album
Zune Ebooks?
Zune Gets Some Luv
NYC Tech Trawl
Zune Fondle!
Live Zunes In NYC To Fondle!!
The Future is Social

Jaysus. That’s too much time devoted to something I don’t own.

I Begin The Month With Sherlock Holmes

March 1, 2007

Camden House

“Do you know where we are?” he whispered.
“Surely that is Baker Street,” I answered, staring through the dim window.
“Exactly. We are in Camden House, which stands opposite to our own old quarters.”
“But why are we here?”
“Because it commands so excellent a view of that picturesque pile.”
–The Empty House

Never read Sherlock Holmes? You are deprived! It’s some of the best writing ever written. The stories have a timeless charm and never fail to be memorable.

Instead of dealing with the nightmare of which format of ebook or file to download to your PDA or phone or notebook or Sony Reader, go to this site and read the stories in a browser window while at work!

Purraise Da Lohrd!

February 11, 2007

Iliad Convert

I’ve been using the Iliad since it was first released. As a device it has great potential, but the software is just not where it needs to be and really hampers the reading experience. I’m beginning to question whether it will ever get to a useable state.

After browsing the Sony Reader forum I decided to check one out. All I can say is WOW. What a change from the Iliad. The device is fast and with a side by side comparison of displays I find the Reader to actually be better. Now, I just need to work on converting all my files over to compatible formats. Hopefully the conversion tools will get better as the product matures, but what a great reading experience.

It’s been many moons since the Sony Reader has come to mind (it is on my Eventually Buy This, Dammit! List). I’m glad to see an Iliad owner winds up liking Sony’s device more. There’s also an update to the Reader. See this other MobileRead thread.