Where Does Apple Go from Here?

Apple iBooks ebooks iPhone 6Nearly 70% of Apple’s revenue in the most recent quarter and the entirety of its growth came from the iPhone, leading one observer to remark that the tech company “is now as dependent on the success of one product line…as Microsoft once was with Windows.”

Pointing to the experience of Microsoft, at one time the Goliath to Apple’s David, some experts wonder whether Apple could ever fall victim to its own success.

But while many investors are asking how Apple will follow up the iPhone, others point out booming global mobile markets leave ample room for competition and further growth.

To hear iBooks Store Director Keith Moerer tell it, Apple’s mobile clout is already paying off on other fronts. Moerer recently estimated the company is bringing in 1 million new iBooks customers every week, after bundling the app with iOS 8 last year.

Much more.

Related: Mobile Moves to the Center

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Android Counts 1 Billion New Smartphone Users (Teleread)
1.3 billion smartphones running the Android operating system shipped in 2014, according to a recent report. Google has trailed Apple in the mobile market, but as one observer sees it, Android’s global growth potential, especially in Asia, could soon give it more of an edge.
Related: E-Commerce Platform Gumroad Heads to Android

Amazon Counts 1 Million Cloud Customers (Wired)
The e-tailer says it will soon begin breaking down revenues for its cloud services but in the meantime claims that business segment now boasts more than a million users and has seen 90% growth since the fourth quarter of the previous year.

Target Dumps Nook (Good E Reader)
The retailer will no longer carry Nook devices and begins ridding itself of the unprofitable inventory, a disappointment for Barnes & Noble as it struggles to make the declining ebook business appealing for potential buyers.

Why Amazon Should Turn Mobile Provider (Venturebeat)
Amazon many have struck out on the Fire Phone, but one industry watcher says the company has every reason to become a mobile operator. Among other incentives is the even more formidable pile of customer data Amazon could collect by providing cellular service.

iBooks Author in Amazon’s Crosshairs? Not So Fast (Ink, Bits & Pixels)
Amazon’s new Kindle Textbook Creator has been seen as a direct lunge at Apple’s digital textbook business through iBooks Author. But that may be overstating the case. One observer argues Apple’s primary focus in the education market is hardware, where it’s being outgunned by Google.

Plugin Redirects Amazon Customers to Oyster (Ink, Bits & Pixels)
A newly launched Chrome extension lets shoppers know whether the ebooks they’re looking at on Amazon are available in Oyster’s subscription-based catalog, too. A similar plugin called “Occupy the Bookstore” recently ruffled Follett’s feathers for offering to find cheaper editions of textbooks in certain online booksellers’ stores.
Related: Oyster’s Ebook Catalog Now Twice the Size of Scribd’s

Romance and Series Ebooks Pull Ahead on Smashwords (PW)
The self-publishing platform unveils its year-end best-seller list for 2014, where the romance genre and titles published in a series predominate. The tried and true series approach prevails in the broader ebook market, too, as one of the most effective solutions to the challenge of discoverability.
Learn more: The report based on the 2015 Digital Book World and Writer’s Digest Author Survey offers a snapshot of how some romance authors are faring in today’s ebook market.

New Device Bets Two Screens Are Better Than One (Good E Reader)
Paper books present readers with two side-by-side pages, so why shouldn’t an e-reader do the same? A new dual-screen device prototype folds along a hinge, with control buttons arrayed down the center.


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