Tag Archives: iPhone

Publishers suddenly bullish on ebooks

iPhone ebook download screenWe’ve had years of foot-dragging and protests that ‘no-one wants to read from a screen, anyway‘, but all of a sudden (thanks partly to a Zeitgeist gizmo and an economic slump, perhaps), publishers are looking afresh at the ebook. [image by henribergius]

I mentioned Pan Macmillan’s new iPhone offer the other week, but it looks as if they’re not the only publishing house realising that, actually, people will pay for accessibility and convenience after all. Who knew?

Pan Macmillan caters for the iPhone alpha geeks

iPhoneHey, you – yeah, you with the iPhone. Wanna do something more interesting than pretend to check your mail while you’re on the bus? Genre publishers Pan Macmillan obviously think you do, and have taken the remarkably forward-looking choice of making some of their science fiction and fantasy ebook selection available for the Stanza reader software. [image by William Hook]

At the moment you still have to download the original ebook to your Stanza desktop app and transfer it across, and you can only get an excerpt rather than the whole thing, but apparently the ability to buy direct from your iPhone is in the pipeline. I’ve been waiting to see how the big houses would respond to Oprah’s backing of the Kindle – maybe we’re seeing the first shot in a hardware war yet to come?

Bruce Sterling says the iPhone is the postmillennial Leatherman

In a slight reiteration of some of his more recent design-related riffs, this brief article by Bruce Sterling compares the iPhone to the Leatherman multitool:

Like all digital technologies, the iPhone has yet to achieve the hard-grained, Spartan elegancies of the steely Leatherman. It makes up for this with its cannibal appetite for other tools. Leathermans will disappear—I commonly give mine away—but iPhones devour other tools, digesting them into virtualized application services: phone, camera, e-mail, Web browser, text-messaging, music and video players, whole planet-girdling sets of urban Google maps, house keys, pedometer, TV remote, seismometer, Breathalyzer, alarm clock, video games, radio, bar-code scanner … the target list grows by the day.

It does indeed. Plus you can take an iPhone on a plane without anyone accusing you of being a terrorist… for the moment, at least. [via Warren Ellis]