Are iBooks The New Podcasts?

Mar 29th, 2010 | By | Category: Citizen Media, Commentary, Podcast Distribution, Podcasting
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The Apple iPad will be available starting this Saturday – and it looks like the company has another hit product. Pre-orders are in the hundreds of thousands and iPad suppliers are forecasting 8 million to 10 million iPad shipments in 2010.

That’s a lot of iPads – and a lot of people that will now be reading eBooks. While the Kindle has been relatively successful niche product, the iPad is a mainstream multi-function device – and it is expected to ship with 30,000 free ebooks available.

With numbers like these, it’s clear that a new platform for publishing is here.

Are iBooks The New Podcasts?

Apple’s iBook sneak preview isn’t nearly as sexy as the “motion magazineViv Mag or Penguin’s forward-thinking concepts for ebooks.

Apple’s eBook / iBook examples, though, look like they could be published by mortals. They look like something podcasters and bloggers could whip up over a couple of weekends.

And, out of the hundreds of thousands of podcasters and millions of bloggers, there are going to be a lot of people interested in publishing ebooks for those 8-10 million people buying iPads in 2010.

eBooks are going to be the new podcasts – not replacing podcasts, but becoming the latest user publishing platform. Just as the iPod provided a mass audience platform for podcasts, the iPad will create a mass audience platform for eBooks.

We’re still looking for the Pagemaker of iBooks – a cheap or free eBook/iBook publishing tool that’s as user-friendly as the typical iPhone app.

It’s coming, though, and once it hits, book publishing will never be the same.

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4 Responses to “Are iBooks The New Podcasts?”

  1. Steve Boyett says:

    See my open letter to Steve Jobs asking for a “bookcast” section of the iBook store that would be the equivalent of iTunes’ podcast section: http://www.steveboy.com/blog/?p=1054

    • James Lewin says:

      “I strongly believe this would do for digital books and magazines what podcasting did for digital audio: bring millions of eyes to the device, allow niche publications that otherwise would be unaffordable in the traditional bound-print model, democratize the end-user experience regarding popularity of such works, and give yet another voice to creative people previously unable to garner what has long been considered the imprimatur of traditional publication.”

      http://www.steveboy.com/blog/?p=1054

      Thoughtful post!

  2. Funny, the last time I checked, PageMaker wasn’t free.

    It’s true that there’s a sore need for something that can make a good EPUB version of your book–the existing converters, some of which are free, all leave a bit to be desired, as does the export to EPUB function in InDesign.

  3. elliot (rhymes with smelliot) says:

    PageMaker wasn’t free – but computers were niche tools back when PageMaker came out, so they had to charge hundreds of dollars to a small number of people.

    Everybody’s got a computer, a mobile computer and soon a tablet – so they should be able to create a content development platform that’s more of a mass market tool.

    Not sure why Adobe has stuck to the vertical model for Photoshop for so long. Seems like they’d do better selling everybody the tools to fake photos.

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