Research firm Forrester has released some numbers on E-book sales for the year, and they're betting that this is the first year where e-book sales will reach close to $1 billion. They also say that by 2015, that amount will pass the $3 billion mark. The survey questioned 4,000 people and indicated that more and more people get their books in digital form. While only 7% read books in e-book format now, they spend a lot of money on them, and that figure will continue to grow. It seems the most popular device to read e-books on is the desktop computer, followed by the Amazon Kindle, Apple iPhone and Sony eReader.
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Alongside the new Kindle (see our Kindle 3 review,) Amazon has released the Lighted Leather Cover. Available in multiple colors like black, orange, pink, blue, green, and red, the Lighted Leather Cover protects the Kindle 3 and provides a Kindle-powered light source. That means there are no batteries required to power the built-in, retractable LED light that slides out of the back cover. It’s got a leather exterior and a gray microfiber interior to protect the device. You can pick up the Lighted Leather Cover from Amazon now for $59.
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Gallery: Kindle Lighted Leather Cover gallery
With the release of the iPad, many started writing off dedicated eBook readers like the Kindle and the nook, saying there was no place for devices that were dedicated to doing just one task when there are more powerful devices that can do the task just as well, while also meeting a myriad of other needs. Sure, in theory, that sounds about right; but you have have to take things like price into account. With the third generation Kindle, Amazon decided they’d rethink the price structure for the Kindle eBook reader, while also revamping the design a bit. Rather than going full color like many were hoping for, Amazon instead made the decision to try and make the best eBook reader on the market, and to sell it at an extremely competitive price. They announced the third gen Kindle a month ago, and it has finally started arriving on the doorsteps of eager buyer. So, how’d they do? Read on for our full review.
When Amazon announced the Kindle 3 last month, the price alone made it obvious that it would be the best-selling Kindle that Amazon has ever put out. However, the specs and size of the device just add to the fact that this is the eBook reader to own if you are looking for a standalone device. Our Kindle 3 review is also live, giving you all our thoughts on the latest from Amazon, but feel free to feast your eyes on our unboxing gallery and get a look at the new hotness from all angles.
With all this talk of comic books being turned into movies (I’m looking at you Scott Pilgrim and Green Lantern and countless others), how about one that’s being turned into…a play? And no I’m not talking about the expensive Spider-Man musical.
I’m talking about Cheapjack Shakespeare, a comedy about a summer Shakespeare company that’s falling apart as they’re “beset by infidelity, egos, ambition and a particularly ill-timed lightning strike.” Shaun McLaughlin, a reknowned comic book writer (Aquaman) and TV producer (Batman Beyond, Static Shock and various incarnations of Justice League), created the online graphic novel that debuted earlier this year. “It’s like Glee with booze and Shakespeare,” McLaughlin says.
Cheapjack Shakespeare: The Non-Musical has finalized its casting, begun rehearsals and set its premiere date for September 9th at the Alt Theatre in Buffalo, NY. Additional performances will be on September 10, 11, 16, 17, 18, 23, 24 and 25.
Our pals over at iLounge have gotten a few iPad-related tibdits from one of their sources, and we thought it was interesting enough to pass on. They are hearing that, in conjunction with the regular September ipod event that Apple conducts each year, that the company may announce a smaller version of the iPad. They say it’ll have a 7-inch display, making the screen closer to that of the Amazon Kindle (Amazon released a new Kindle last week.) We’ve also been hearing that a smaller iPad was on the horizon, but we didn’t hear anything about a date. Other sources are claiming that the next iPad will definitely ship with a front-facing camera as well, turning them into Facetime devices (the next iPod touch will likely include similar functionality.) Even if it doesn’t happen in September, we fully expect to see a smaller iPad by January.
If Apple wants Facetime to catch on, they definitely need to get it into more devices than just the iPhone 4, and this would be a good way to accomplish that. A smaller iPad with increased functionality launching so soon after the original could result in buyers remorse for some, but it’s not like Apple hasn’t made similar moves in the past, especially with the iPod a few years ago.
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This evening, Amazon introduced us to their new Wi-Fi Kindle ebook reader, and we’ve gotta say, we think they’ve done it again. Hot on the heels of the release of the newly redesigned Kindle DX, the new Kindle is 21% smaller and 15% lighter than the Kindle 2. You don’t lose out on screen real estate though, since the Kindle keeps its 6-inch display size, although the e-ink screen now sports 50% better contrast and 20% faster page refreshes. It now packs 4GB of storage space, which can hold up to 3,500 books. Even better, though, is that Amazon is pricing this at just $139. That’s a significant price drop from the Kindle 2. If you want the new Wi-Fi model, but also want the free 3G connectivity, Amazon will be selling a 3G model for $189, which is still a huge savings from what the Kindle 2 sells for. Here are the links for those who want to pre-order:
The new Kindle will be released on August 27th, and if you pre-order, you’ll receive it that same day. It’s available in both white and graphite.
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Keeping true to their word, Amazon has started shipping their new graphite Kindle DX to customers who pre-ordered the device. Even better though, if you didn’t get the opportunity to pre-order, Amazon still shows the Kindle DX as being in stock, so you should be able to order one today and have it shipped pretty much immediately. Don’t forget, the Kindle DX price was slashed from $489 down to $379 about a week after the smaller Kindle went from $259 to $189. You can purchase the Kindle DX and the smaller Kindle now:
Hot on the heels of the Amazon Kindle price drop, the company has just released a new and improved Kindle DX. The most obvious change is the new color, as the Kindle DX is now darker than its littler sibling, sporting a graphite hue. The display is greatly improved, with 50% better contrast, making everything nice and sharp. It still rocks free 3G wireless, allowing you to download books just about anywhere you are, and the display is still 9.7-inches in size, which is a ton of real estate.
Even better than all the new features, though, is the price. Amazon has slashed the price of the Kindle DX down to $379 from the previous $489 price point. That’s even cheaper than the original 6-inch Kindle when it first shipped, and the Kindle DX is a far superior product. You can pre-order the new Kindle DX now—it ships on July 7th.
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Amazon is continuing their Kindle strategy—that being focusing on Kindle content sales in addition to Kindle hardware—with an update to the Kindle iPad and iPhone apps. The update brings Kindle Editions support, which allows books to embed audio and video, playable from right in the app. The first books to incorporate Kindle Editions multimedia features include Rick Steves’ London and Rose’s Heavenly Cakes which is a cookbook that shows you how to…bake awesome cakes. As of this point, there are only a handful of books that Amazon is classifying as “Kindle Edition with Audio/Video” but we are sure that Amazon is looking to make this a differentiating feature, so we expect we will see much more of this in due time.
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