The $20 iPad

Okay – it’s not quite an iPad, but at $20, it doesn’t have to be. The Aakash 2 is a smaller tablet (about the size of the Google Nexus 7) and it will sell to students in India for only $20*.

You may have already heard of the Aakash 2 but has a video with the CEO giving it a spin.

How could a near-free tablet computer change the ebook and digital publishing business? Probably in the same way a free e-reader could change it – except illustrated book-, app- and children’s interactive ebook-publishers would be along for the ride, too.

The Aakash 2 is pretty stripped, as the CEO admits in the demo. To a non-tech-person, however, the Aakash 2 might as well be a Kindle Fire or a Nook Tablet. It runs on Android; it has a color screen; and connects to the Web. What more could an ebook seller without a tablet business or a children’s interactive ebook publisher that wants to see a tablet stuffed in every stocking this holiday season want?

* This price is subsidized partially by the government. It would cost $40 without the largesse of the Indian taxpayers.

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The rest of the day’s top news:

Re-Org at Amazon Publishing (paidContent)
Publishing vet Larry Kirshbaum is now atop Amazon’s U.S. book publishing operation, having assumed control over its West Coast imprints in a re-organization at the company. Other news is that Amazon is sending its erstwhile West Coast group publisher Victoria Griffith to its European HQ in Luxembourg in early 2013 to start-up its European publishing operation.

Innovative Strategies for Ebooks (DBW)
Jeopardy style: What are things you will learn at Digital Book World 2013?

The Four-Hour Chef’s Ebook Sales (Pub Lunch)
Tim Ferriss has sold about 30,000 ebook editions of his latest title. About the same amount have sold in print, despite refusal by Barnes & Noble to stock it on its shelves.

Who Owns Your Right to Turn Pages? (DBW)
We all know that Apple has taken credit through patents for that page-turn animation that is so essential to the ebook reading process. But it wasn’t the first company that tried. Whatever happened to that little Apple competitor that couldn’t?

Teens Breaking Out (DBW)
Not pimples: out of the genre classification system. A youth expert claims these kinds of distinctions are becoming less relevant for the next generation of readers.

Google Play Now Accepting Pre-Orders (Tech Radar)
Pre-orders are reportedly not very popular in the ebook world…yet. Google Play has just added the functionality to its store.

Amazon Brings App Store to Japan (DBW)
Amazon continues its expansion overseas.

Rumor Mill: Barnes & Noble and Credit Cards (Mashable)
It was reported that if the credit card you bought Nook ebooks with has expired, you may not be able to download books you had bought in the past. Well, it’s not entirely true.

Libraries Get Media Savvy (Pub Weekly)
The American Library Association has released a media kit for its members to use to help librarians convince the public that ebook publishers should let them buy their titles for lending. Considering publishers have very little in the way of a consumer brand, the strategy doesn’t seem too relevant. It’s the publishers that need more convincing.

Everything You Wanted to Know about Ebooks But Were Afraid to Ask (Mac Observer)
Let’s say you just joined the publishing industry and need to learn what ebooks are all about (signing up for this newsletter is a good start. Welcome!). Or let’s say you have been in it for 10 years but find yourself in the same position. Click.

Or, alternatively, register for DBW 2013. All your burning questions will be answered.



3 thoughts on “The $20 iPad

  1. THartman


    The new Novo 7 Legend is the first quality “$100 TABLET” available from any major brand and launched November 15th — and available at a site called TabletSprint and includes Android 4.1, a quality screen display, and Micro SD portable storage – Plus WiFi, Ethernet and an option for 3G connection –

    The Novo 7 Legend is manufactured by Ainol Electronics, which received a “Best Tablet of the Year” award at CNET Consumer Electronics Show 2012. TabletSprint also bundles in something no one else is offering for all tablets they carry – free monthy 3G/4G wireless service in the U.S. with a 500MB Data Plan with full internet access & VoIP voice calling.



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