Alternative eBook Sources for Your Kindle, Plus Bonus Book Review!

(image courtesy Motherinchief) I mentioned in my post about Macmillan, Hachette and HarperCollins pushing new agency model pricing on Amazon that there are alternatives outside the Kindle store. Since these aren’t as easy as just “flip on your wireless and go”, I thought I would give a quick rundown on a few of these options, along with how you can have them on your Kindle (or ebook reader of your choice).

eBook Copyrights, DRM, and Amazon Versus Macmillan

Well, it’s time for another State of the eBook. Of course, this week was under the iPad shadow, but-gasp!-there’s other news out there too! Plus, with Apple landing smack in the ebook game, plus the final “Google Books” settlement, it has led to some interesting discussion about the nature of ebook digital rights management and how we, as consumers, can either accept or challenge the status quo. Not to mention the argument between Amazon and Macmillan books! All of these really touch upon many of the issues surrounding ebooks; as their popularity increases, questions about how they should be treated…

Did Apple Change the eBook Market?

(photo courtesy Engadget) Weeks of rumors and fevered speculation are finally over, and the iPad has been released. You can check out Gear Diary’s liveblog, and listen in as Judie, Dan, Larry and I discuss the iPad in our podcast. Of course, there was one area of the iPad announcement that, while rumored, is still a bit shocking: Apple will be opening an iBookstore on the iPad. But what does this mean for ebooks? Should Amazon be sweating bullets? Has the whole ebook market changed with the sweep of a keynote slide? Read on to find out!

Txtr Brings ePUB to the iPhone

Earlier in the week, I ranted about my frustration with the lack of commercial ebookstores on Android. Chief among my frustrations was a lack of ePUB readers that could handle DRM, the one complaint that overlapped with the otherwise better stocked iPhone. Now the iPhone has gone and beaten Android on all ebook fronts, as txtr’s new app reads ePUBs with Adobe Digital Rights Management. Why does ePUB matter, specifically the kind linked to an AdobeID? Because it is fast becoming the dominant format for any non-Kindle ebooks. Barnes and Noble quietly switched to ePUB about a month ago (though…

Oh eBook(stores), Where Art Thou?

CES proved there’s an onslaught of Android tablets headed our way this year, from the Entourage Edge to the Dell Mini 5 to the Notion Ink Adam. And of course, Judie and Dan have been familiarizing themselves with the Camangi Web Tablet. But something’s missing from this Android tablet equation: Where are the big eBook stores on Android?

CES eBooks News and Analysis

Welcome to the special CES Edition of State of the eBook! As everyone has reported, there was a huge onslaught of eBook reading devices this year, from dedicated e-ink devices to tablets! What does this mean for the eBook market? Let’s find out!

Skiff Reader Announced; Magazine Publishers Want to Own the World

Yet another new player hit the eBook market this week, but this one is a bit different than the “e-ink, 6in screen, supports x, y, z file types” lather rinse repeat. Skiff has announced a monstrous 11.5in screen reader, designed for reading magazines and newspapers. Not only does it have a huge screen, but it also plays back audio. This is NOT just another eBook reader!

Que Publishing Releases Windows 7 Your Way by Michael Miller

Just published is Windows 7 Your Way: Speed Up and Customize Windows  by Michael Miller from Que Publishing. This book promises to help you make your Windows 7 experience “faster, smarter, easier, better.” They talk about removing bloatware, surfing the web safely, getting better performance and battery life out of your notebook, fixing some of the Windows 7 annoyances, and even finding alternatives to some of the built-in MS software.  Better still, they promise to help you with all of these things in a way that is easy to understand – no advanced degree required! Not long ago I reviewed Microsoft…

Is Text to Speech Copyright Infringement or Accessibility?

Famously, the Kindle 2 debuted with Text to Speech enabled, only to see it yanked for many books after the publishing companies complained it violated audiobook copyrights. This debate is becoming an issue all over again because of devices like Intel’s Reader for the blind, which uses a scanner and text to speech to allow a visually impaired individual to “read” a written passage.

Text Input On The Camangi WebStation

Dan: Judie and I are continuing to play with, tweak and become familiar with our Camangi Webstations. There is no question that it excels as an e-book reader. Thanks to The Android version of eReader both of us have downloaded our libraries and had a number of sessions reading from the device. There is no question that it works quite well in this regard. It allows you to read both in landscape and portrait mode, lets you change the font, is backlit (something that isn’t possible with a device that uses ePaper, and, thanks to the testing, navigation is as…

Skimming through 2009 eBooks

(image courtesy of petitinvention) Welcome to the final State of the eBook for 2009! It has been a big year for eBooks, and I am going to do my best to cover a timeline of the high points, as well as a few things to look forward to in 2010. Rather than do a traditional timeline of events, I thought I’d break it down by the year in highlights per company/platform, and then a few predictions and news items to look forward to in 2010!

First Full Day with the Camangi WebStation

Judie: As you may recall, I received my Camangi WebStation yesterday afternoon. Other than downloading some of my eReader library to it, I wasn’t able to spend as much time with the tablet as I might have liked before previously made plans drew me away. This morning I was greeted with tweets and links pointing to Michael Smith’s review, where he calls the Camangi a “total fail” because (among other reasons) it isn’t as fast as his first gen iPhone and because it doesn’t browse the internet as quickly as the Hackintosh he likes to couch surf from. Michael has…

Camangi Webstation Includes GPS… DHL Could Use One

I wasn’t going to write a post about my experience with shipper DHL yesterday. Yes, although they told me on the phone twice that my Camangi WebStation was on the way it never came. Yes, I had to look on while Judie unboxed hers. I had to listen to her “ooh and ahhh”, all the time thinking that mine was on the way any second when, in fact, it wasn’t. Yes, my exchanges with their customer reps left much to be desired. But still, I had no plans to write a post about my experience. Elana just got off the…

The Camangi Webstation Unboxed

It seems like it took forever, but my Camangi WebStation finally showed up today. Dan’s is out for delivery, so in the meantime, he is processing the raw video I’ve uploaded of my unboxing. While we wait for that, here are some pictures. I haven’t done anything other than unbox the Camangi, turn it on … and marvel at it before plugging it in So without further ado, here are some pictures. Video and more impressions from Dan and me will be up shortly. 🙂

Merecal is a Media Lovers Friend

I got a $100 Amazon gift certificate from Kerry for Christmas (thank you Kerry!!), and for half a second I was tempted to blow it immediately on Kindle titles from authors I already follow. After thinking about it, I instead sent out a tweet asking for suggestions. One of them came from @Merecal … “Weird name” I thought to myself, but I didn’t yet understand. I went to the site and saw a full list of books – many by authors that I follow, and many of them not yet available. I looked at the titles and saw ‘bindings” specified…

Stephen Covey Strikes an Exclusive eBook Deal: What Does This Mean for Authors and Royalties?

Stephen Covey is proving one of the habits of highly successful people is playing hardball; he’s struck a deal with Amazon to make them the exclusive providers of his eBooks, in exchange for at least 50% of the sales revenue. Amazon will also be promoting his books heavily. What does this mean for publishers, authors, and the concept of royalties in the digital age? We convened a Gear Diary chat session to hash it all out!

Barnes and Noble Moves to ePUB

Teleread received a tip from one of their readers that books downloaded from the Barnes and Noble eBook store are coming in ePUB now, instead of the legacy PDB format used by eReader/Fictionwise. It also seems that Teleread is jumping on the “eReader is generic” bandwagon, since they point out that even Barnes and Noble can’t keep them straight.

The Barnes & Noble nook; or how I managed to completely waste my Saturday on a piece of over-hyped hardware

The Barnes & Noble nook eBook Reader has been touted by some as a Kindle-killer, and after what seemed like a ridiculously long wait, when mine finally showed up today I was ready to be wowed. It’s not that I don’t already enjoy reading eBooks on my Kindle DX (Kevin is using the Kindle2) and on my iPhone, it’s just that the nook was the “next new big thing”, and I allowed myself to be caught up in the excitement. I was perhaps a week later ordering mine than many were, because I found out that American Express Rewards offers…