Could an established player like Amazon again disrupt the publishing world the way it did with the Kindle at the start of the ebook revolution?
From one point of view, it’s hard to see how; as the industry charts a path into the mobile future, the Fire Phone hardly suggests the e-tailer is on the verge of a new breakthrough.
But All Brain founder Marcello Vena says he “would not be surprised if the next big thing is Amazon disrupting parts of itself.” As Vena points out, the company is in some ways a constellation of start-ups keen on digital experimentation.
And even though Amazon faces considerable challenges in some emerging ebook markets, its adaptive energy could lead to major successes in 2015 and beyond.
There’s no reason to think it won’t be in mobile, for that matter. “Amazon is gaining valuable experience,” Vena says, “and will not make the same mistake twice.”
Related: Join Marcello Vena in Exploring the Latest Trends in Global Publishing at DBW15
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Amazon’s Fire Phone Long-Game (Business Insider)
Amazon’s first-ever smartphone failed to make much of a splash in 2014, but that doesn’t mean the company is walking away. Recent reports say Amazon has another attempt in the works and is committed to letting next year’s holiday shopping pass it by if that’s what it will take to get it right.
A Look Ahead at Digital Content Delivery (Guardian)
This forecast of emerging trends in digital content deals more directly with web publishers than book publishers, but as those two spheres come into greater contact, many of the mobile-driven changes highlighted here will increasingly impact them in similar ways, especially when it comes to brand building, data and marketing.
Ebook Pricing Reconsidered…Globally (Pub Perspectives)
Ebook prices are set to change quite dramatically throughout the European Union as retailers adapt to a new tax law taking effect next month. But a wide range of factors is contributing to readers’ perceptions about how much digital content should cost all around the world. Three industry leaders weigh in.
Related: Join Global Publishing Leaders to Explore Emerging Ebook Markets at DBW15
Peter Booth Wiley Retires from Company Board (PW)
The chairman of John Wiley & Sons will retire from his position at the head of the publisher’s board in September 2015, a post he has held since 2002. The emphasized, though, that “the Wiley family remains committed to its leadership role in governance of the company.”
Related: Hear Directly from Paul Labay, Vice President, Digital Delivery and Global Education at Wiley, Live at DBW15
Simon & Schuster Doubling Down on Direct Sales (PW)
Reviewing the publisher’s accomplishments in 2014, CEO Carolyn Reidy praised recent efforts at improving direct sales and marketing as well as greater verticalization of Simon & Schuster’s content offerings.
Related: Q&A with Editors of Simon & Schuster’s Business Book Site 250 Words
Bloomsbury Buys Osprey (Pub Lunch)
Bloomsbury acquires Osprey Publishing for £4.6 million, characterizing the purchase as “an ideal fit for our strategy of publishing for well-defined special interest markets.”
Year in Review for E-Reading Devices (Good E Reader)
The market for e-reading devices has changed considerably over the course of the past year, with tablets eclipsing them in popularity even as tablet growth itself slows down. Still, e-readers continue to occupy a place in the ecosystem. Here’s a look at where they stand to date.
Bedtime Ebooks a Bad Idea? (NYT)
If you’re the sort to cuddle up with a good ebook before hitting the hay, you may want to reconsider the practice, according to a recent study that found staring at devices with glowing displays in a dim room can lead to a less restful sleep. Sounds anecdotally reasonable, but more research is probably needed; this survey relied on a vanishingly small sample size.