Entries in Phil (405)
Ok, we don't usually do this type of post, but because it is Friday and nearly pay day for many of us here in the UK (and, more importantly, only one week away from the iPad launch for you fortunate US residents) here is a link to the ipadaccessories.com Essential Accessories for the iPad.
And, just for a laugh, let's not forget The Joy of Tech's take on how to carry your iPad.
Earlier this week, the new Chairman of the UK television network ITV, Archie Norman, e-mailed all his staff requesting they contact him directly with comments on a new strategy for how the company can move forward.
But the comments he makes later in the Telegraph article show what he thinks the future of TV networks is likely to be, paid content on mobile devices and computers. And the mobile device he specifically mentions? Of course, the iPad!
"I think it is very likely [we will use some elements of pay-TV] because one of the things that is going to happen as people consume their television off different platforms — such as internet-enabled TV, off your laptop, off your iPad as you commute to work — for some parts of the content that ITV own or others own, people will pay."
This is interesting because it shows how major content providers see us using our iPads, as well as other mobile devices. The rest of the Telegraph article is worth reading too for an idea of how corporate networks are thinking.
In another news story this morning, the BBC are reporting that UK newspapers the Times and the Sunday Times will begin charging for access to their online news service from June. They will launch new versions of their websites in May, offering an initial free trial period, before charging £1 for one day's access or £2 a week for a regular subscription. It is not something we are used to here in the UK so, as the article says, it will be interesting to see whether this 'high risk strategy' pays off, or if people instead go to the free sources of news that abound around the Internet.
The New York Times is itself reporting that advertisers are going for a 'land grab' of sorts over advertising space in certain iPad apps before the April 3 launch. The NY Times comments that this is arguably the hottest time to be in front of punters' eyes whilst the excitement lasts.
Those of us familiar with the iPad launch event will remember well the New York Times demo of their app for the iPad, and this is certainly how many people see themselves using the iPad.
The iPad Catalyst
You may think it is going a little too far calling the introduction of the iPad a catalyst, but that is how many see it, for the content creators especially.
Just like the iTunes store affected the music sales model and the iPhone shaped the development of 'SmartPhone' or mobile apps, we think the iPad has the potential to shape the future of content delivery.
Whether the 'paid content' model works or not is going to depend on a lot of factors, some of those being cost, quality of content, accessibility (i.e. independent stores or everything routed via Apple's iTunes/iBookstore), and quality of service, especially for video based content.
Have an opinion about paid content on the iPad? Let us know in the comments.
Macrumrors have reported that Apple are promoting the iPad to Educational Institutions with a special 10-pack bundle for the Wi-fi only models (not the 3G models). Academic organisations can benefit from the fairly modest saving of $20 (about £13.41) for non AppleCare iPads and a slightly better $40 (£26.82) discount per unit if they opt for AppleCare.
The iPads will be supplied in one big box without individual packaging though, so it is very much a distribution pack. The Educational establishment will not be allowed to resell them of course.
Individuals (Students/Educators) who would normally receive an Educational discount from the Apple Store are not included though it seems. We have gone through the Education Store and verified that no discount is applied if shopping for just the one iPad.
Why is this of interest?
Even before the iPad was announced, many commenters discussed the merit of using the device in an Education environment, and it excites us to think of the creative uses the iPad can have in a classroom.
It is easy to think of how the iPad can be used in areas such as art, music/audio and video production, Languages, Geography, Design, etc. It also seems a natural fit for Internet based research, as well as being used for textbooks and e-learning.
In fact, when you sit and think about it for a minute, there are many possibilities of using such a simple, and let's face it gorgeous, device in the Education arena.
The modest discounts offered here aren't going to completely enable the adoption of the iPad, but it does mean that Apple are thinking along these lines too and this opens up new opportunities for engaging learners of any age, but especially those of school age, who arguably have more of a leaning towards the use of technology in their learning.
Have you got any ideas for how the iPad can be used in Education? We would love to hear them in the comments.
We knew it was coming but Amazon have officially announced their Kindle App for 'Tablet computers including the iPad' (italics ours) on their website. The announcement focusses on the app, but the iPad makes it into the headline, with a specific mention later on too. It is an interesting play for Amazon, especially when many pundits have said that Apple is looking to put some pressure on Amazon with their iBookstore.
The Kindle app has been available on the iPhone for just over a year now, but the iPhone is not really suited for reading books or magazines for most people. This announcement is of note because it appears to duplicate one of Apple's most touted iPad features, the iBookstore. Business Insider have an interesting side-by-side comparison of the two apps on their site and it is obvious which one is Apple's, as they say:
So far, it looks like Apple is winning the design contest, especially for its e-book store.
Duplication = customer choice?
There is certainly function duplication here, and Apple have refused apps on the iPhone simply because they 'duplicated functionality' already installed on the device. However, the deals that Amazon have with publishers and the books they have available should differ from Apple's selection in theory.
In addition, Apple would certainly be seen to be anti-competitive if they refused the Kindle app simply because it sold books too, wouldn't they?
However, as Amazon are announcing the Kindle app, we can only assume it will be available in the app store for the iPad sometime after it launches. It is a complex relationship that Apple and Amazon has at the moment and it will be fun watching it pan out. Our only hope is that the choice will remain in the app store, to the benefit of us, the end consumer.
What do you think about Amazon's play here? Let us know in the comments.
Australia's first iPad app is going to be a medical encyclopaedia according to Mogeneration. In conjunction with Medwords, they have announced the publication of Carter’s Encyclopaedia of Health and Medicine, and it will be released first on the iPad.
This 1,100 page medical encyclopaedia will have the traditional look of a hardback encyclopaedia, but it will contain interactive images, a browsing history and allow you to add bookmarks. From the screenshots on Mogeneration's website it looks a lot like the Dorling Kindersley Human Body book for the iPad, demoed by Penguin publishing, which we blogged about a few weeks ago.
However, this is interesting from two perspectives:
1) This is an example of a serious use of the iPad for educational purposes and much is being said about the iPad and the impact it could have on the field of education and research.
2) Mogeneration's publishing framework is quite interesting. It allows any content creator to publish their content via a native iPad/iPhone (and Android) app, which can then be purchased through the App store, but they do the development work.
Mogeneration are not the first to offer this service and provide books via apps in iTunes, but from a creative point of view this kind of service is interesting. It is an alternative to the more traditional publishing route using the iBook store that Apple will be introducing with the iPad launch.
Once the iPad is launched this is certainly the approach that we expect many self-publishing Creatives to take in getting their content onto the iTunes App store without having to deal with Publishers and all that entails, thus joining the hundreds of other 'appbook' publishers already there. It is an area that we expect to develop rapidly and we will be watching with great interest.