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ebook War Receives New Contender – Microsoft Courier

March 5, 2010
1 Comment

eBook reader? Tablet device? Digital journal?

With the just recently announced and yet to be released Apple iPad on the horizon, and the Amazon Kindle and Barnes & Noble Nook already in the market, it seems that there are plenty of contenders in the ebook market currently. And while the iPad is much more than just an ebook, Microsoft is going to be entering the market as well with the release of the Microsoft Courier.

With this last photo, you can see that this product is going to be a much closer competitor to the Apple iPad than to either of the traditional ebooks. The operating system is the same one that will be used for the new Microsoft 7 phone and the Microsoft Zune. Each screen is about the size of a 5″x7″ photo and when folded it is less than an inch thick.

The Courier appears to be centered completely around writing and drawing with some sort of pen tool. The Courier contains built in handwriting recognition programs, making this a much more intimate product. However, at this point there is no released release date or price for people to look forward to.

While looking at the spec photos above, I am very excited to see how this product plays out. It seems that Microsoft has finally created something that is extremely aesthetically pleasing. Depending on the price of this product and how the new few months of development go, I think a lot of people will be looking to keep up to date on this product.


The eBook Wars Have Begun

January 31, 2010

As of yesterday, all Macmillan books were pulled from Amazon Kindle libraries over a price war. Most books on the Kindle cost $10, which is very reasonable considering a hefty $20-25 price tag for new hardcover books. However, with the release of the iPad, Macmillan wanted Amazon to charge $15 for their books, and in a surprising move, Amazon pulled all of Macmillan’s books from the Kindle library. Below you can see Apple CEO Steve Jobs presenting the iPad and Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos presenting the Kindle.

I don’t know was Bezos’s strategy is with this move, but allowing the iPad to claim more book publishers will just give them merit to say that they have a better selection than the Kindle. I don’t really see cause to spend over $200 on an e-reader myself, I like the feel of an actual book in my hand. But to me it seems that Amazon is making a war where there should be one. The regular Kindle is still half the price of the cheapest iPad, and it is just for reading. The iPad’s iBook app is just one of thousands that you will be able to employ on the machine.

I think the ability for magazines to create apps and have a digital subscription is much more important on the iPad than its book reader. Because of the rise of digital technology and the green movement, magazine and newspaper subscriptions have fallen dramatically. However, with the touch screen 9.7″ iPad, magazines and newspapers can be properly shown and customers can have a quality reading experience.

Nick Ciarelli, a tech writer for the Daily Beast, comments on the release of the iPad in this video and towards the end of the video discusses the impact of the iPad on the eBook industry and on the Kindle itself.

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