Oyster Unveils Book Lists

Oyster Unveils Book Lists

eBook subscription service Oyster has unveiled their latest initiative, Book Lists. They borrowed a page out of GoodReads playbook by allowing their readers to assemble books they want to read or are in the process of reading. This not only is a personal thing, that lends the assist in the books you want to read this year, but you can view other peoples lists to get inspiration or discover new content.

Some people get a kick out of snooping in medicine cabinets, but Oyster prefers to go straight to the bookshelf. You can tell a lot about a person by the books they read, I always love checking out peoples physical bookshelves to see whats on it, Oyster does things the digital way. Take a peek at the Book Lists put together by Pulitzer Prize winners, cult authors, and Team Oyster favorites.

Oyster is hoping that developing new features will give them a competitive edge over Entitle, Scribd and Amazon Unlimited. The entire Netflix for eBooks concept is starting to see the market get flooded and Oyster is starting to standout in the crowd.

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Oyster Unveils Book Lists

Amazon Receives Patent on a Store for Selling Used Digital Objects

Amazon Receives Patent on a Store for Selling Used Digital Objects
A number of sites are reporting on the imparting of this patent and some of them erroneously are also reporting that Amazon has been granted a patent to sell used ebooks. What the patent actually entails is outlined in the abstract of the patent:

“An electronic marketplace for used digital objects is disclosed. Digital objects including ebooks, audio, video, computer applications, etc., purchased from an original vendor by a user are stored in a user’s personalized data store. Content in a personalized data store may be accessible to the user via transfer such as moving, streaming, or download. When the user no longer desires to retain the right to access the now-used digital content, the user may move the used digital content to another user’s personalized data store when permissible and the used digital content is deleted from the originating user’s personalized data store. When a digital object exceeds a threshold number of moves or downloads, the ability to move may be deemed impermissible and suspended or terminated. Additionally or alternatively, a collection of objects may be assembled from individual digital objects stored in the personalized data stores of different users, and moved to a user’s personalized data store.”

Thus, what is granted is a store to sell used digital objects. A key element of this store is this: “… the user may move the used digital content to another user’s personalized data store when permissible and the used digital content is deleted from the originating user’s personalized data store.”

What does this all mean? Probably not a lot. First, note that the patent was applied for in 2009, and the world has moved on a bit since then in terms of digital rights. Second, anything sold, or moved, in the store would be subject to the rights granted to the individual who is the initial owner. As ebooks are licensed, not bought, the first-sale rule doesn’t apply, at least under current legal precedent in the US, and so the owner of the ebook wouldn’t have the right to put it into any store.

As with many of these patents which the tech community loves to speculate on, many of them are simply of the “it’s a good idea, let’s see if we can patent it as we may find use for it some years down the road” type of thing.

I wouldn’t read anything into the granting of this patent, but only time will tell.

Amazon Receives Patent on a Store for Selling Used Digital Objects

Kindle Fire’s Silk Browser Gets First Major Update

Kindle Fire’s Silk Browser Gets First Major Update

Remember the Silk browser that Amazon first introduced with the Kindle Fire about two years ago? You might be forgiven if you don’t for the browser clearly lacked much of an appeal. Things though seem to be different this time round post a healthy dose of update that the browser has been provided with.

Most of the update concerns ease of use for the users what with the brand new user interface to look forward to. Navigation has been made simpler while the new Reading View which presents a single page view of contents that is devoid of any sort of distractions in the form of ads and such. The new tab opens with an empty address bar as well as a list of the most visited sites, something that we have become used to with mainstream browsers such as the Firefox or the Chrome.

Meanwhile, the update has also made the active tab more distinguishable than before, which is another nice aspect, it must be said. The same can also be said of the Full Screen view that does away with the top and bottom toolbar to open up more visible area. This apart, links to some of the most visited sites by other users of the Kindle Fire device can be reached via a tab on the top left corner. Similarly, other usual browser features such as Downloads, Bookmarks or the Most Visited section open up from the left. There are some enhancements meted out to the browser’s rendering engines as well to allow for a smoother and faster performance.

Overall, the Silk is now a lot more matured than what it was even just a year ago and while all of the improvements do make a positive change to the browser, it’s still a work in progress sort of thing with the Silk. “We’re in the early days of Amazon Silk, and there’s plenty of work still to do,” the team behind the browser revealed.

Kindle Fire’s Silk Browser Gets First Major Update

Amazon Places a Massive Tablet PC Order with Quanta

The Amazon Tablet rumored to be in development just got a massive boost in reality as the online behemoth recently placed a large order for Amazon branded Tablets with Quanta Computers.

Quanta has verified that it is going to start shipping out the Amazon tablets in second quarter of 2011, so it looks like summer time. It seems like they intend to put out almost 700,000 units in the next three to six months, with an order size of around 3.5 billion dollars.

Digitimes recently interviewed sources at Quanta who mentioned that Amazon enjoys robust sales in North America, but fails to penetrate the European and Asian markets. Amazon has been under the gun by management to release an iPad and tablet competitor. In the last six months Amazon has released its own Android App Market and a cloud system for music. These factors will blend into an exclusive service for the Amazon tablet and provide synergy.

The technology will be assembled by Quanta, but includes many component manufacturers popular with e-readers and tablets. E-Ink is confirmed to provide some new screens and Fringe Field Switching (FFS) technology.

Amazon Places a Massive Tablet PC Order with Quanta

E-Ink Holdings Admits No New Screen Technology in 2011

E-Ink Holdings Admits No New Screen Technology in 2011

The sparkling Pearl display will continue to be the latest and the best that E-Ink has to offer us, as the company has stated they have no new display developed for 2011 that is better than the Pearl .

“We’re generally on a two-year cycle with our e-ink technology,” said Sri Peruvemba, the Vice President of global sales and marketing at E-Ink , before also adding, “It takes some time to develop and test the next generation.”

So while E-Ink takes its time to come up with something that could replace the already formidable Pearl display, the best we can have this year is better devices that would utilize the Pearl to its full potential. There may be devices with better processing capabilities, which in turn will lead to faster refresh rates for the Pearl display . That scenario would be ideal, seeing as the Pearl display is already astounding, and anything that makes for a better reading experience with improved response times will be welcomed by us.

Another area where the Pearl screen might be seen getting into is in the realm of full motion video playback. However, here too there is the need of have in place the right technologies to make this a reality and its one more thing that might take some time to iron out the kinks.

Right now, the Pearl e-reader can be seen in action at the new gen Kindle and Sony e-readers .

via cnet

E-Ink Holdings Admits No New Screen Technology in 2011

CONTEC Debuts to Tremendous Success at the Frankfurt Book Fair

CONTEC Debuts to Tremendous Success at the Frankfurt Book Fair

The big trend with major book fairs, such as the ones in London and New York are the digital conferences that occur the day before. For a number of years Good e-Reader has been covering all of these events and have seen the tremendous growth of digital and some of the startups that have come along to cornerstone niche segments.  This year at the Frankfurt Book Fair we saw the CONTEC  digital conference debut that was attended by 428 people from 32 different countries.

The main focus of the 25 interactive panels was the digital bookselling supply chain, start-ups, self-publishing, mobile devices, and the future of bookselling and book-lending, CONTEC Frankfurt provided a rich programe for all attendees. “With CONTEC, we stepped away from formal presentations and opened up the dialogue beyond traditional topics. I am thrilled with the response and feedback from attendees and am already planning next years conference” said Kat Meyer, Programme and Community Manager.

“Contec highlights just how badly the publishing industry needs a platform to surface, discuss and promote innovation. A worthy start to build on!” said Nick Perrett, Group Director Strategy and Digital Director for HarperCollins.

Joe Schick, Director of Global Digital Content, Baker & Taylor: “When I started working in publishing, ‘ebook’ was a dirty word; conferences and conversations about ebooks were niche. Now they are mainstream and you can’t talk about digital and print separately.  But, most people don’t need a high-level strategy or a hands-on technical discussion, they need something in the middle. CONTEC Frankfurt helps provide me with what I need to interact with technologists. ‘Geek speak’ for non-geeks.”

Richard Nash, Head of Partnerships and Content, Small Demons: “CONTEC isn’t afraid to get down into the digital muck and tussle with the challenges we have yet to confront as opposed to congratulating ourselves on the year before.”

Kevin Franco, Co-Founder & President, Enthrill: “There is a great openness at CONTEC Frankfurt. People are interested in learning and exploring new and innovative options for digital publishing. I have a feeling that people want to be here instead of have to be here”.

You can catch our entire coverage of the CONTEC event coverage HERE.

CONTEC Debuts to Tremendous Success at the Frankfurt Book Fair

Amazon Set to Launch Kindle Touch in Japan in April

Amazon Set to Launch Kindle Touch in Japan in April

The e-book reader market in Japan may be poised for a major shakeup now that Amazon is all set to introduce its Kindle Touch 3G e-reader there in April. Price of the Kindle e-reader would be 20,000 yen, which converts into $258. That’s quite a bit on the higher side considering the same is available in the US market for just $150. However, the price is still lower when it comes to readers with 3G capability, which usually cost more in Japan. The 3G service in Japan would be provided by domestic player NTT DoCoMo and not AT&T.

The e-reader , if it indeed were to make it to the land of the rising sun, would be the first of its kind on foreign soil. Amazon has only recently started accepting orders for the Kindle Touch from countries outside of the US, though that has been restricted to the Wi-Fi only version so far. Right now it is Sony and the other local makers that are ruling the roost so far as e-readers go in Japan. A foreign element adding to the competitive spirit in the market would have far reaching effects, and the consumers are set to benefit more than anyone else. Sony, along with other domestic players, might be forced to re-think their pricing strategy once the Kindle Touch makes it big.

Amazon Set to Launch Kindle Touch in Japan in April