Round up #227: dynamic pricing, workaround for connection issue
The ILMK Round ups are short pieces which may or may not be expanded later.
A partial workaround for the connection instability on the Kindle Fire HDX
Big props to ✿ Jingle-bella ✿, another Kindle Forum Pro who came through with an idea that’s really helping with the problems I’ve been having with my Kindle Fire HDX (at Amazon…benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*). Since the recent update, it hasn’t been staying connected to wi-fi networks…I have had to toggle the Airplane Mode on and off frequently to connect to things. That’s been in more than one browser (I use Maxthon), and in apps without a visible browser (like Fandango).
✿ Jingle-bella ✿ intelligently suggested limiting the variables by turning Airplane Mode off, and then turning wi-fi on.
What that does is turn off the rest of the wireless connections…my intuition here is that the LBS (Location Based Services) might perhaps have been interfering. It’s even possible that when I’ve lost connection, it’s been when LBS has been trying to check-in.
I don’t have a 4G model, by the way.
I tried it this morning:
Swipe down from the top – Wireless – Airplane Mode on – tap Wi-Fi (just below Airplane Mode) and turn Wi-Fi on
I would guess I was on for at least an hour without having to toggle! I did toggle the wi-fi once so far today, although the Fire had been sitting idle for a while when I did that.
Thanks again to ✿ Jingle-bella ✿ for the suggestion!
I’m hoping we get a more robust solution with an update for the Kindle Fires which has been announced in “the coming weeks”.
For those of you having freezing issues, I’d be curious to hear if that helps you as well.
Save $50 on an HDX (up to 3 of them…possible savings of $150) with an Amazon.com Rewards Visa
Here’s a great deal!
You need to have that special credit card, and it says this will go “while supplies last”. As we saw with the Keurig special yesterday, that might not be much time! =:o
It’s been a bit bizarre to see people’s vitriol over not getting that deal…even reportedly to the extent of writing a bunch of 1-star reviews on the product.
I tried to get one, watched the countdown clock, and still didn’t.
I look at it like buying a lottery ticket…the odds are very against you, but it’s fun if you win! ;) They announced ahead of time that there were 5,000 of these. Let’s say, oh, a million people tried to get one…your odds would be one in 200 (half a percent).
I’m happy for the people who got one! I’ll probably try again for others.
I’m sure people didn’t think about the fact that leaving 1-star reviews might actually reduce the number of people who buy one (many people just look at the average)…are they really willing to increase the chances that people will lose their jobs, because they didn’t get an opportunity to save some money? I’m sure most folks don’t go through that thought process, but that’s a possible result of 1-starring a product.
However, there is one big difference between this and the lottery…you have to pay for a lottery ticket. ;) You don’t have to pay anything for trying this, although you do have to have Special Offers on your Fire.
I recommend that you sign up for the text alerts, if you want to do this. You can do that at
Limited Time Special Offers only on Kindle Fire
Limited Time Special Offers only on Kindle Fire at AmazonSmile
P-books aren’t perfect, either
Whenever something is introduced, there is a tendency to point out all of its flaws, and ignore the flaws of the current technology or system.
I’m not saying that’s a bad thing.
I was an actor, and one tradition is that we got a night on the set before the show opens. We walk around and point out all the potential dangers, typically in a joking way.
That might just seem silly, but it’s actually very important.
You see, the person in charge of the sets is there listening (not saying anything, by the way).
They can then assess those comments, and very often, they end up fixing something that could have been a real risk.
In the case of e-books compared to p-books (paperbooks), some people pointed out possible eye issues on the former (although those aren’t as likely on a non-backlit screen…you read an older style Kindle the same way you read a paperbook).
We also have had a lot of people say that they like the “smell” of a p-book, or the feel of it. My Significant Other had a great response once. Somebody said (somewhat snidely) on seeing my SO with a Kindle (several years ago), “I like the feel of a book in my hand.” My SO said, “I like the feel of a hundred in mine.” ;)
Well, many people have actual physical issues with p-books. Allergies are a common one (I think it has to do with dust mites, in some cases, as I recall).
Here is a
Daily News article
about a student who had to stop going to university because of an allergy to dusty books (and other allergen issues).
I do love old books, but for people who have complained about the effects they have on them, here is some evidence to show others…
HarperCollins CEO says that publishing is healthy
Variety article by Ted Johnson
HarperCollins CEO (gee, wasn’t that a song by by Jeannie C. Riley ((at AmazonSmile))? ;) ), Brian Murray, has some very interesting and positive things to say about the publishing industry.
Drawing a parallel between how digital music affected the studios and how e-books affect publishing isn’t entirely wise, as Murray notes. One of the things I’ve said about that before is the consumption of the two are very different. Most people will listen to a song multiple times, and read a book once, for example (not that there aren’t many re-readers out there).
I think this might stand out to a lot of people:
“The company, a unit of the newly spun off News Corp., is testing what he called “dynamic pricing,” where prices of ebooks can be changed “daily” to increase revenues and royalties for authors, as opposed to the print side, where prices are set on the book itself.”
That’s another thing I’ve noted in the past. When I managed a brick-and-mortar bookstore (which was admittedly some time ago), we had to have “sticker guns” to put new prices on books…and it was labor intensive. If you could vary prices easily, you could take advantage of current events (like a hot pop culture movie) to raise or lower to maximize your revenue.
What does that mean for you as a Kindleer?
I’ve got two pieces of advice.
First, to quote (from memory) Whitley Strieber, “Learn to live at a high level of uncertainty.” ;) In other words, if you can not know for sure what the price will be from one minute to the next, you have to figure out how to accept that.
Here’s the key to that: buy a book at a price that you think is fair.
Then, if it goes up or down later, you already know you got a fair price, right? Sure, I know people get jealous when other people get a lower price, but if you know you made a well-reasoned purchase in the first place, you can be satisfied with yours and happy about theirs. Easy, right? ;)
Second, take advantage of price notification services. Those are no doubt going to have to become more sophisticated…right now, they probably aren’t price checking quickly enough to notify you in time of “dynamic pricing” changes.
the most valuable resource on the web for Kindle users.
You can give them the information on books you want to track, and they’ll send you a free e-mail (the whole service is free), when it drops an amount you specify.
They have a lot of other good resources, but that one in particular may help as prices start to roller coaster more…wheeeee! ;)
Falling behind the Norwegians…
“Magnus, you are the Head Librarian here at the National Library of Norway…which books should we digitize?”
“All of them!”
That’s right…according to this
The Verge article by Adrianne Jeffries
the National Library of Norway is working on digitizing all of the books in its collection, and making them available online to anyone with a Norwegian IP (Internet Protocol) address…for free!
They are making deals with publishers to make that happen.
Yes, it will take a while…they are thinking decades (but improvements in technology could shorten that).
Probably not going to happen in the USA, although there are more things becoming available.
I’m still looking for a magical book machine to come on the market: put a p-book in there, and it automatically digitizes the book with no action required from you and no damage to the book.
No luck so far. :)
I have digitized public domain books, and it’s a lot of work. This one caught my eye:
The reviews are generally good. It seems to have some smart features: apparently, it can tell when a new page is in place, detecting perhaps the motion of moving the page. That would make it a lot easier than having to get the book in place, and then pushing a button…I know that doesn’t sound like much effort (“Get over it, George Jetson”), but the issue is that you are sometimes carefully holding the book so it becomes a bit of a juggling act to push that button and keep the book from moving at all (which would mess up the scan).
At $268.90 at time of writing, it isn’t outrageously priced…
What do you think? Is traditional publishing in good shape? Are you surprised at how many ways there have been to get discounts on Kindle hardware this holiday season? Are you able to feel happy for other people when they get a deal you don’t? Do you have any negative physical reactions to p-books? Feel free to tell me and my readers what you think by commenting on this post.
* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. Shop ’til you help!
This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.