Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Kindle Fire Re-ignites the Picture E-book Market

Have you ever played with an iPad picture book? I say 'play', because its interactivity can no longer be simply termed as 'reading'. Before the iPad came onto the market, the picture book looked to have a longer life as a traditional book. But now times are changing.

Here's a sample of an iPad picture e-book, 'Wild About Books' from Random House Books, written by Judy Sierra and illustrated by Marc Brown:

Ipad's reign over the picture e-book market may soon be challenged however. Amazon's new Kindle Fire Tablet, which comes out on the 15th November in the US,  is set to open up the world of e-books to a wider picture book market, using a new format called Kindle Format 8 (KF8). Not only is it smaller than the iPad, it's also cheaper, retailing at US$199.

In their announcement Amazon said, "As showcased on Kindle Fire, KF8 enables publishers to create great-looking books in categories that require rich formatting and design such as children's picture books, comics & graphic novels, technical and engineering books, and cookbooks"; "Kindle Format 8 replaces the Mobi format and adds over 150 formatting capabilities, including fixed layouts, nested tables, callouts, sidebars and Scalable Vector Graphics, opening up more opportunities to create Kindle books that readers will love"; "Children's picture books come to life with brilliant images, fixed layouts and Kindle Text Pop Up."

Read more about it here and here.

It looks like the last frontier of traditional publishing, the paper picture book, is now also heading for the archival vaults of the National and State Libraries (and also at my house, even if I have to hide them under the bed).

Below is a sample of an award winning picture book, 'I'll follow the Moon' by Stephanie Lisa Tara and illustrated by Lee Edward Fodi that has successfully been translated to a tablet while retaining its integrity as a book to be 'read'.


Kaz Delaney said...

The technology is amazing Angela, but I'm still dragging my feet. SElfishly I just want those paper books. Which of course means that there'll be a huge stack under my bed as well. I can just see me havig to climb into bed on a ladder as my beds gets ever closer to the ceiling courtesy of the growing pile of stashed books! lol.

Thanks you so much for sharing though. My mind struggles to keep up sometimes! Amazing...

Angela Sunde. said...

I'm the same! I just love paper books. But a little part of me is coveting an iPad. And I would certainly buy a Kindle Fire over a normal e-reader, because of the colour capabilities for books and magazines.

I have a few friends who are emptying their personal libraries because they now have an e-reader, and I suspect homes in the future will have very few books. What we have to remember is that many schools in Africa are screaming out for books. That's why I've become a volunteer to collect books, new and old, for the Africa Books charity. Contact the CYA Conference for details on where to send your books.

Karen Tyrrell said...

Thanks Angela for this post,
I would love this new Kindle!
Putting it on my Christmas wish list.

DimbutNice said...

Great to see an emerging (blossoming) market for E Pic Books. Thanks for this insightful update Angela. I'll stay posted.....Santa's list from my a bit too full this year for such indulgences.