Round up #315: Big retailer on campus, Kindle indie wins Golden Globe
The ILMK Round ups are short pieces which may or may not be expanded later.
From Kindle indie to Golden Globe
Congratulations to Andy Weir!
The adaptation of
which was published as a ninety-nine cent Kindle indie (independently published book), after having been given away as a serial, won a Golden Globe this weekend!
That marks a considerable change in the industry.
Now, it is important to point out that it was traditionally published (tradpubbed) in-between, but that demonstrates one model for tradpubs for the future.
They may be able to take fewer chances themselves on unknown authors or offbeat topics, and instead, let indie authors take the (considerably lower) risks. After a book demonstrates having a market, then they can bid for it and get their machines in motion.
It won for Best Motion Picture – Comedy or Musical, one of the top two whole movie awards.
There has been quite a bit of commentary about it having competed in the comedy category, but that’s like the categories that show up for books on Amazon…the people behind the property choose where to submit them. This was my tweet on that:
It’s also likely to get significant Oscar nominations on Thursday.
I want to additionally note that Amazon’s Mozart in the Jungle also took top honors. That’s important, because it proves that Transparent wasn’t a fluke…that Amazon is an important player in original video. That affects us as readers because what affects Amazon generally can also impact what they do with regards to books and e-book readers/tablets.
How Amazon is ending Barnes & Noble’s college store business
One of Barnes & Noble’s (relative) bright spots has been their university stores.
They have often been the place on campus to get…well, a lot of things, going beyond books to pens, paper clips, t-shirts, and other items.
As laid out in this
I think Amazon has really figured out how to disrupt their model.
They started in 2015 but are moving up a bit by opening at the University of Pennsylvania. That’s not to minimize Purdue or UMass (or their other two locations), of course, but it is an “ivy league” location.
Students can order by noon and pick up items the same day in a staffed location.
That’s great, but they are also making it a practical working and social site:
“In addition to mobile-enabled, self-service package pick up, it will be the firstAmazon pickup location to feature communal work spaces with interactive media pods where students can connect their laptops and mobile devices to TV monitors for presentations, brainstorming, studying, and collaborating.”
Gee, are they going to sell coffee and really hurt Barnes & Noble’s core business? ;)
No, but they are opening in the dining facility! They won’t need to sell coffee.
They are expanding this to two more universities this year…Berkely and Davis (also in my area).
I think this model could very well in other areas, like business parks. I don’t think you’d see it in shopping malls…but if it is a destination where you are already, I think it could be huge.
Strong rumor: new, portable, cheaper Echo
In this Wall Street Journal article by Greg Bensinger
(if the link only shows you part of the story, try pasting the title of the story into Google)
they give some details on a rumored little sibling of the
This is now definitely an e-books story, by the way, since the Echo now does text-to-speech in addition to audiobooks.
It would fit into your hand…and would not need to be plugged in to work! It would charge up, and then you could carry it around with you.
You would need to push a button on it to get it to listen to you…the battery drain would reportedly be too much to have it listening all the time.
I would definitely want one! :)
I put this in the “strong rumor” category, because the WSJ is pretty reliable…and they have convincing sounding details (code name: “Fox”).
I’m also looking for Alexa to come to my Ford Fusion, and it sounds like that might be on the way as well.
Oh, and I want Alexa on my phone. :)
See, one of the things they’ve done is make Alexa a central repository for some things for me, like a Shopping List and a To Do. I can read those and manually edit them in the app on my phone…but I can’t talk to Alexa through my phone.
Big things are coming!
Fourth generation Fires are getting updated to Fire OS 5 soon
I was excited to see a notification from Amazon appear on my (now discontinued) Kindle Fire HDX that it would be updated to Fire OS 5 soon…I have that on our newest generation Fire, and it’s a big improvement.
However, they sent it by mistake. :)
I got a e-mail from Amazon that said in part:
“Recently we sent a message to your Amazon Fire tablets about a software update coming soon. We wanted to clarify that this update is for your 4th generation Fire tablet and will start rolling out in the coming weeks.”
My 7″ HDX is a third generation…they did a 4th generation 8.9″ HDX, the 7″ HDX is a 3rd generation.
You can tell which version you have here:
Update to Kindle for iOS
Amazon sent me some information about a new update for Kindle for iOS (Apple devices):
- Native Social Sharing – This feature makes it easier than ever to recommend a book to a friend or chat about a funny quote. Kindle book readers (or senders) can recommend the book or share a quote from the book with whomever they want – one friend, a group of friends, or more. Customers can choose from the apps they use every day to chat with friends like Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp, as well as email, texting, and more.
- Parallel downloads – up to 3 books will download at the same time, allowing customers to get to their content faster
- Audible player adjustments – remove the (X) from the Audible player bar to simplify the CX and align with other platforms”
I think the big one for most people there will be parallel downloads! Currently, you have to wait for one book to download, then the next one starts.
I’ll be looking forward to that coming to other Kindle platforms!
What do you think? Would a place to pick up Amazon packages, and to use multimedia and wi-fi, work in an office park? Why would someone shop at a B&N university store if this was available? Have you tried text-to-speech on yur Echo yet (by the way, I expect that to come to the Fire TV family soon)? Does it bug you that Apple mobile devices get some features before other devices? Feel free to tell me and my readers what you think by commenting on this post.
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* 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.