Every day, news about exciting and innovative digital releases come across the virtual news desk here at Digital Book World, and every two weeks, we’d like to take some time to just point out a few titles that are making waves in the digital publishing space.
So here are some quick links to projects released in the past few weeks that have caught our attention. The first three are donating proceeds from sales to some great causes – please check them out!
From the press release:
Popular kids’ bookstore app TouchyBooks has combined its efforts with the UNICEF office in Spain to create “Momotaro,” the first UNICEF interactive children’s book app for the iPhone and iPad in order to teach kids about the importance of helping those in need and of being resolute in the face of challenges – all while raising money and awareness for UNICEF’s work in Japan. All of TouchyBook’s profits from the sale of the eBook will be donated to fund UNICEF’s disaster relief efforts for children in Japan.
As a child-focused book publisher, when the devastating earthquake and tsunami hit Japan on March 11, the TouchyBooks team knew that younger children often feel helpless and cannot understand the situation as it evolves around them. “Stories have been used since the beginning of time to help children understand the world around them. ‘Momotaro’ is a great story for parents whose child has seen or heard information about the tragedy in Japan, but might be too small to comprehend the enormity of disasters or their role,” said Raul Soriano, author of Momotaro.
From the press release:
“The Three Pandas” is viewable in both English and Chinese, reflecting the company’s commitment to multilingual presentation and international audiences. Most significantly, See Here Studios has formed an association with the nonprofit organization Pandas International to donate a portion of app proceeds to panda conservation efforts. Pandas International is a U.S.-based nonprofit that works directly with the China Conservation & Research Centers for the Giant Panda (CCRCGP) in southwestern China.
Based on the “Goldilocks and the Three Bears” fable, the book transports readers to the bamboo forest and the home of three adorable panda bears. “The Three Pandas” is a gorgeously animated storybook that features cinematic film intros for key story moments and touchable characters on every page. An original orchestral score, narration and musical sound effects further enrich the reading experience.
Design / Art / Photography
The 99 U.S. cent app – called 3/11 Tsunami Photo Project – features images and messages from photographers who were on the ground recording the quake, tsunami and aftermath. All of the proceeds raised by the app, which is iPhone and iPad compatible, will go to the Japan Red Cross Society.
It comes from Kodansha Ltd., the biggest publishing house in the country, and was designed to “deliver the reality [of the tsunami] to the world from Japan, and support the disaster victims,” said Yoshiaki Koga, the project’s editor in chief. Released two weeks ago, the app has already been downloaded by people in 33 countries and regions. It ranks No. 2 among all paid apps on iTunes in Japan.
From the press release:
The New York Times bestselling Our Choice was first published by Rodale in November 2009. Using PushPop’s revolutionary digital book platform, the Our Choice App features over an hour of documentary film footage, hundreds of stunning photographs, animations, audio narration, and interactive graphics that can be explored by tapping, pinching, and even blowing into the microphone.
“I am so thrilled that Our Choice has come to life on iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch,” said Al Gore. “Readers can now learn about the solutions to the climate crisis using some of the most visually compelling and interactive technology available.”
From The Guardian Apps blog:
Swing an iCat this week, and you’ll hit dozens of royal wedding apps on Apple’s App Store. Few have the clout of HarperCollins’ new Kings and Queens app for iPhone and iPad though: it’s fronted by historian (and recent reality TV star) David Starkey.
The app includes abridged text from Starkey’s Crown and Country book, but adds multimedia elements including timelines, family trees and video footage. In a twist, the app will also allow users to watch a live stream of this week’s wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton from Sky News.
This is just a taste what’s being created out there in the digital book world, but we’re sure there’s more. What new releases did we miss? What are your must-see ebooks, enhanced ebooks, and apps? Tell us in the comments below.