Booktrack Gets Another $5 Million to Add Soundtracks to Books

shutterstock_125874383shutterstock_125874383-2newThe New Zealand-based startup Booktrack, which creates soundtracks for e-books that sync with the reader’s pace, raised another $5 million, bringing its total funding to $10 million.

Booktrack released its first tracks two years ago, and today has a library of 15,000 tracks available for its 2.5 million users.

Book publishers are able to create their own soundtracks, or they can pay Booktrack roughly $1,000 per novel to create the track for them. According to Booktrack founder Paul Cameron, around 50 publishing companies, including HarperCollins and Random House, use the platform to generate new revenue from both old and new titles.

“There are so many e-books gathering digital dust on digital shelves, and we can bring them to a new audience of readers,” says Cameron. “We’re able to get the Xbox, Netflix and Spotify generation interested in reading again by pairing it with another main form of entertainment.”


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Simon & Schuster Launches Pop Culture Site “Glommable” (PW)
Simon & Schuster imprint Touchstone has created a new site, Glommable, that will “highlight some of the Internet’s best binge-worthy content from familiar and not-so familiar faces, alongside a healthy serving of guilt-free pop culture popcorn,” according to David Falk, vice president and associate publisher of Touchstone. The site launched with an interview with Allie Brosh, author of the bestseller Hyperbole and a Half, and Felicia Day, author of You’re Never Weird on the Internet [Almost].

E-book VAT Said to Hold Back Small Markets (The Bookseller)
According to the International Publishers Association’s José Borghino, charging VAT on digital books is “holding back the development of the e-book market in general, and especially in non-English and small-language markets.” A global survey found that only 22% of countries apply their standard rate of VAT of GST (Goods and Services Tax) to printed books, while 69% apply standard VAT to e-books. The average rate applied to printed books is 5.75% and to e-books is 12.25%.

Amazon Now Lets Authors Update Fans (The Digital Reader)
Amazon introduced a new service, Amazon Connect, that allows authors to directly update their fans. All readers have to do is follow an author, and when he or she writes a new book, has one available for pre-order or publishes an article, readers will be immediately notified.

Audiobooks’ Appeal Beginning to Widen (Futurebook)
“Audio is the fastest-growing genre in publishing,” said Pandora White, audio publisher at Orion. “There has been a complete revolution when it comes to audio, with younger people listening to audiobooks for the first time, purely because of the gadgets and smartphones we all have.” The author goes on to break down how the audiobook market is evolving.

Google Play Books Releases Expanded New Version (The Digital Reader)
Google released a new version of its iOs e-book app that adds features previously only available in its Android version, including the new Literata font and the ability to sync notes and highlights with Google Drive.


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