DoJ Wants Apple To Terminate Deals With Publishers, Link To Rival Bookstores Instead

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Apple can't ditch its ebook compliance monitor.
Apple can't ditch its ebook compliance monitor.
Photo: Apple

The ongoing iBooks antitrust case between Apple and the United States Department of Justice took a very interesting twist this morning when the DoJ and 33 state Attorneys General laid out plans to remedy Apple’s wrongdoings and restore competition to the market.

The DoJ wants Apple to terminate all of its deals with book publishers, and refrain from entering into any new ones for at least five years. It also wants the company to start selling e-books from rivals like Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

TED’s New Ebook App Illustrates Apple iBookstore’s Shortcomings

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TED's new ebook series and ebook app highlights the concern that ebook purchases can lock readers into a specific platform.
TED's new ebook series and ebook app highlights the concern that ebook purchases lock readers into specific platforms.

The TED organization, which sponsors a range of conferences and talks on cutting edge topics recently launched an ebook series known as TED Books. Like the non-profit’s other initiatives, TED Books are “designed to spread great ideas.” Sticking to that ideal, the organization is making the ebooks, which will be released every two weeks, available across a range of ebook platforms including the new TED Books app for iOS devices.

The move highlights one of the challenges about ebooks – the choice of merchant and platform. That’s a particular concern when it comes to Apple’s iBookstore because purchases can only be read on an iOS device.

Hearst Exec: iPad Leads Digital Magazine Sales, Users Don’t Want Interactive Content

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Hearst see digital publications as the future but without interactive features
Hearst see digital publications as the future but without interactive features

Hearst, the publishing conglomerate that includes several of the world’s largest magazine brands, sees a bright future of iPad and tablet editions. Duncan Edwards, CEO of Hearst Magazines International, delivered some surprising statements as to what that future will look like at this week’s World e-Reading Congress in London.

The most surprising statement was that Hearst doesn’t plan to include interactive content in its digital publications despite work done in the company’s little known App Lab and the belief that users will pay more for a digital edition. Edwards also described mix of devices used by Hearst digital subscribers. That mix is headed up by the iPad but with Barnes & Noble’s Nook platform right behind it.

New Nook Company To Take Apple’s iPad Textbooks Head-On

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Battle for e-textbooks heats up with new Nook company
Battle for e-textbooks heats up with new Nook company

Barnes & Noble’s announcement that it was spinning off its Nook business and that Microsoft would be a significant stakeholder in the new company raised a lot of eyebrows. The partnership seemed unnecessary in order to meet the goals of settling a patent dispute and ensuring a Nook app for Windows 8 tablets.

It turns out that Barnes & Nobel will be shifting its textbook business to the new company along with the Nook and that Microsoft’s $300 million investment will likely be centered around creating an e-textbook initiative that will likely compete head-on with Apple’s fledging iPad-based e-textbook business.

Kindle Fire And Android Tablet Sales Have Collapsed In Wake Of New iPad

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Despite holiday gains, Apple retakes tablet market share from Amazon and Android
Despite holiday gains, Apple retakes tablet market share from Amazon and Android.

While Apple saw strong sales for all its iOS devices during its post-holiday quarter, Android tablet sales slumped, giving up any gains that Android had seen as a tablet platform during the holiday shopping season.

According to IDC, overall tablet shipments were down more than the analyst firm had expected. The decline to 17.4 million units represented a 38.4% drop off from the holiday quarter shipments of 28.2 million units – a notably steeper decline than IDC’s predicted 34% decline.

While overall tablet shipments were down, Android tablets slumped significantly more than Apple’s iPad, which gained an additional 13.3% of the tablet market.