Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Best Christmas Gifts: Acoustic Research Infinite Radio

Here's a nice review of our Wi-Fi Internet Radio ARIR200 with Slacker. (Thanks Storm Sector!)

Friday, October 22, 2010

Books In Browsers - 2010

I spent all day yesterday tuning in to the the Internet Archive's #BIB10 Summit, which was held to examine the rapid transition towards books on the web.  Unfortunately, it was held in San Francisco and I was stuck  at my desk in Indiana.  Even though there was no live audio or video feed, the constant tweets and pics flowing from the 2 day conference we're very informative and helped to placate my desire to know what it was that I was missing about the future of the publishing industry as we know it.  I hope that they make the slides public, in fact Bill McCoy from Webpaper already graciously has.  It's amazing to see how har we've come in a year and ePUB3! sounds very exciting for the evolution of vending and lending ebooks. If you're interested, here's a list of attendees HERE.  (Thanks Blaine!)

Also, last night there were showcase demonstrations of the vending and lending of books in web browsers on a variety of different platforms.

Demonstrations included:

      - Browser-based ereaders and reading applications

      - Discovery via BookServer, search engines, Open Library
      - Publisher mechanisms for selling books in browsers
      - Libraries mechanisms for lending books in browsers


Monday, October 18, 2010

Quote of the Day:

"We're all gonna die one day anyway and we'll lose all our stuff. So don't worry too much about it. Just do something that lights you up, and lights up your customers, and lights up the world and scale to that. Because what's going to happen is people who are lit up by the future are going to be pursuing that future, and the people who hold onto the past are going to hold on too long." - Tim O'Reilly, Founder and CEO of O'Reilly Media

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

YouTube Chasing New Pay-Per-View Model

Apparently, YouTube is in talks with the major studios to "launch a global pay-per-view video service," which would let visitors pay to stream single movies.  Wow, what a concept!  Only pay for the privilege to watch once and save a considerable amount of money because you aren't keeping a copy of the media file.

Well, I wonder how long it will take for someone to do same thing for digital books?  I think many of us entrepreneurs are thinking about it, but it's the publishers who are afraid to let go of the control and distribution of their content, so IMHO, we will have to wait several years before it becomes widespread practice and more than a niche play.

Personally, I think single stream [or single read] payments are much more economical and valuable to today's average consumer and as a result, the hipper publishers/distributors who acquire the digital rights to rent chunks and entire eBooks - are way ahead of the game in the long run.


Sunday, September 12, 2010

Is This The Beginning of the End for First Sale Doctrine...?

Guess What, You Don’t Own That Software You Bought

Hadn't seen a lot of chatter on this topic yet, but it smells "bad law" in my humble opinion. Many of the digerati have been hashing this topic from different angles for years, but can someone out there please help me follow the payola-logic of why our basic rights should be reduced just because the file in question is digital??

I understand that software is a little different than music, videos and games, but when are we going to update our copyright laws? So, if this ruling holds then, is it the end of "legal" garage sales and flea markets as we know them that include digital media and entertainment items ....? Also, what about innovative businesses predicated on selling used media like swap
sites and online exchanges? Time to go underground?

Is it any surprise that people turn to piracy when their rights are
increasingly taken away in the digital world......?

If I can legally rip a CD or DVD to make a personal backup copy, does that mean I can never monetize the original title in a secondary market when I'm tired of it?

Thursday, September 02, 2010

One Apple Nugget No One Mentioned

With thousands (maybe millions) of other Americans, I watched Apple's press event yesterday with awe and admiration. It was kind of fun to predict what Steve Jobs was going to say before he actually said it, based on rumors and my own intuition. While there were many comprehensive reports, articles and blog posts today all about the products/services that were showcased by Mr. Jobs, there is 1 angle/perspective that I don't think has received much attention.

What is significant to me, is the fact that Apple publicly acknowledged that it's original TV launch strategy and business model was flawed somewhat, leading to the PR/marketing nightmare of "hobby" being associated with the product. However, unlike its predecessor, the new Apple TV is clearly acknowledging that consumers prefer to stream online video, rather than download-to-own...with or without DRM. This is a huge behavioral and media consumption shift that cannot be ignored any longer by all of the players in the value chain. This is the future. Adapt or die.

So far, consumers have showed little interest in purchasing TV shows, and Apple's $.99 cent rentals may not drastically change that attitude, but I'll wager that mainstream America quickly hops on board the train, 1 dollar at a time, because the overall value proposition (price, ease of use and a closed system) is now more in tune with the demand curve that is exponentially growing beyond the early adopters. (Case in point, over 61% of Netflix's 15M subscribers "streamed" at least 15 minutes in Q2 this year, up from 37% in 2009.)

So, in my humble opinion, they made the correct tweak. The highly affordable rental price per show and the $99 hardware price are killer sweet-spots that will resonate loudly with the mass market, especially after their Marketing team trumpets the coolest Koolaid and the competition feels the squeeze and quickly becomes the latest roadkill (sure am glad I didn't buy my boxee or Roku yet...)

Monday, August 23, 2010

Streaming Internet Radio In the Car Is Growing...

6% of U.S. cell phone owners stream their music and internet radio channels/apps through their car system according to the latest Infinite Dial Study from Edison Research...

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Is India the New China?

Factoid of the Day: India will be the most populous country by 2025 (surpassing China) so strategizing now for that market makes a lot of sense (SOURCE: US Census)

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Google's Android leads U.S. smartphones

According to a recent NPD report, Smartphones running Google's Android software were the top seller among consumers in the United States in the second quarter.
  • Android accounted for one-third of all smartphones purchased in the April-June period and Google said that 160,000 Android phones were activated each day during the second quarter, up from 65,000 in the first quarter.
  • Research in Motion's BlackBerry sliding to second place for the first time since 2007.  BlackBerry lost nine percentage points of market share, falling to 28 percent.
  • Surprisingly, Apple's iPhone was in third place with only a 22 percent share.
SOURCE: Engadget

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

1 In 5 Store Music on Smartphone

According to a recent survey conducted by industry analyst firm ABI Research, "20 percent of mobile phone users store music on their devices and 25 percent store photos on their phones."  I bet this number will decline as more and more people buy smartphones and slowly learn to stream/acquire/access their content from the cloud.

Thursday, July 01, 2010

AR Infinite Radio Review

Here's a nice review of the Acoustic Research Infinite Radio ARIRC200 that I helped design and bring to market. It's nice to see the additional features we added being appreciated !!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Preliminary Findings: Consumer Trial of Mobile DTV Service

No surprises here among the initial findings:
  • Viewers say they are excited about the potential of mobile DTV. On a scale of 1 to 10 (with 1 being "not at all excited" and 10 being "extremely excited"), initial survey participants rate mobile DTV as 7.1.
  • Most viewing is happening "on the go."  Nearly two-thirds of viewing (63%) is being done "on the go," compared with 44% happening at work or at school, and one-third (33%) of viewers say they tune in from home.
  • Viewers are tuning in multiple times a day. Just under half of viewers say they watch one or two times a day. Just under 30% of viewers say they watch three or more times a day.

Friday, June 04, 2010

Is Apple's iPad Hurting E Ink Sales?

Recent research for Sony in the US by Marketing and Research Resources found that 11 per cent of iPad owners bought the device primarily for reading.

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

The 3 "Duh" Factors for Optimized Email Deliverability

"These are the basic practices every single email marketer should be implementing NOW.  So, whether you've been in the email world for years or months or days, please take the time to make sure you're executing all 3 of these and they are functioning properly."

1. Authentication Records
2. Non-Spammy Headers
3. Make Your Opt-Out Easy To Find


Monday, May 17, 2010

What Are eMail Marketers Doing in Their Outgoing Mail...?

According to a recent survey of more than 1,900 email marketers, Blue Sky Factory found the following surprising statistics:
  • Email marketers use View in Browser features the most of all, with almost 32% of outgoing campaigns using this to help readers view their messages.
  • A surprisingly low 11% of email marketers surveyed use Share With Your Network social features in their messages, despite heavy usage by consumers of social media and social networks.
  • Despite the near-ubiquity of mobile devices, a scant 2% of email marketers create custom mobile versions of their outgoing campaigns targeted towards mobile devices.
"...email marketing isn't keeping up with how subscribers want to use and consume content..."

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Publishing's New Business Model

Throw the baby out with the bath water....(but keep the baby!)

"No more life-of-the-copyright contracts" - Richard Nash



Saturday, March 27, 2010

Internet Radio Was My DJ

I had the opportunity to mix live sound for a popular 6-piece central Indiana band called The Tides last night at Wings in Anderson. What was interesting to me warranting a posting was the fact that it was the first time that I used my iPhone to provide the break music between sets. I pulled up one of my custom reggae stations on Slacker Radio and easily connected it to the board with a stereo mini plug to L/R rca cable. Surprisingly, I had never done this before and usually just use an iPod or a laptop to supply the background music. In my opinion, it was pretty cool to be able to utilize a ‘custom station’ that I had personalized over time to perfectly set the mood with the exact vibe and ultimately, this streaming method reduced the amount of “gear’ I had to bring or worry about charging, etc….

I wonder how many other sound engineers are using their smartphones like this and what their experiences are like? For my initial test, the sound quality was excellent and my AT&T 3G connection worked flawlessly!

And no disrespect intended, but now I wonder if the venue's ASCAP/BMI license would actually pay the artists I streamed for this type of usage? I know that Slacker has to pay Sound Exchange for the non-interactive royalty rates, but what about the "performance" aspect of rebroadcasting internet radio in public? Who pays for that and how does that money find it's way back to the artist who wrote, performed or published the song??

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Web Standards for E-books

Here’s an excellent article about the real world challenges and pitfalls of producing an eBook in 2010.  Toronto journalist and author Joe Clark does a wonderful job of watering down and simplifying the often complex process of using XHTML and EPUB to produce eBooks that look good, no matter what device they are read on. (Thanks to Dave H. over at MacRaven for sharing!)

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Quote of the Day:

Math of Publishing Meets the E-Book

“The only thing I think is a mistake is people trying to hold back e-books or Kindle and trying to head off this revolution by building a dam. It’s not going to work.”

-Anne Rice



Friday, February 26, 2010

O'Reilly TOC Publishing Conference 2010

For those of you who aren't afraid to openly embrace the latest The Tools of Change brought to fruition from the intersection of art, technology and business, the O'Reilly TOC Publishing Conference 2010 was held in NYC this week.

Unfortunately, I couldn't make it this year, but the folks behind the event were hip enough to kindly (and rather quickly I might add) share the keynotes, interviews, photos and PPT's, to make us all feel special. If you're willing to spend a few hours, the quality of the content is outstanding...






What Is Open Leadership?

Great quote below from a slideshow presentation by Charlene Li on Developing A Social Strategy Webinar.

OPEN LEADERSHIP: "Having the confidence and the humility to give up the need to be in control, while inspiring commitment from people to accomplish goals."

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Tools of Change Keynotes

Listening to the free On-Demand TOC keynote streams...Looking forward to getting copies of the slides in a few days.

Special thanks to O'Reilly and the event sponsors!


Saturday, February 13, 2010

What Aren't eBooks Cheaper Than Physical Books?

Best explanation yet, as to why eBooks aren't much cheaper than their printed brethren...http://htxt.it/rp2k

Given by Ron Boehm, President and CEO, ABC-CLIO Publishing

(Special thanks to Sue Polanka for posting it to her No Shelf Required blog!)

Friday, January 22, 2010

RCA's New Lexi eReader

Here's a quick video interview of Audiovox President, Tom Malone, showing off the new RCA Lexi eReader shown at CES 2010 two weeks ago. MSRP is $229 and content will be provided by Barnes & Noble.

To learn more, the press release is HERE...

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Amazon Offers 70% Royalty

Source: Publishers Lunch

Amazon Offers 70% Royalty--If You Self-Publish Inexpensively, and Comprehensively
Amazon has offered authors and publishers using their self-service digital text platform a significantly enhanced royalty option as of June 30--70 percent instead of 30 percent--provided that certain specific conditions are met:

* The ebook should be not too cheap and not too expensive--priced between $9.99 and $2.99--and the digital list price has to be "at least 20 percent below the lowest physical list price for the print book"

* It has to be available for sale in all territories in which the author or publisher has rights

* It has to be available for text-to-speech, and whatever other new features Kindle adds in the future

* "Books must be offered at or below price parity with competition, including physical book prices. Amazon will provide tools to automate that process, and the 70 percent royalty will be calculated off the sales price."


Friday, January 15, 2010

Word of the Day

DISPOSITIVE - providing a final resolution (as of an issue) : having control over an outcome [Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of Law, © 1996 Merriam-Webster, Inc.]