Wednesday, October 28, 2009

iTablet Series - Awesome But All Conjectures

We'll get into it each day or week, however it makes sense, on what everyone's guess about the iTablet is and what it will be able to do.  But once we start smelling rumors, we'll leave it out.

The reason I want to get into it now is because I ordered myself a Nook, Barnes and Noble's first reader, and I'm trying to convince myself that I ought to wait for the iTablet.  The Nook is certainly an interest concept and I wouldn't mind trying it out before the iTablet is available for sale.  However,  a dry run would cost me close to $400.  That could at least be half the cost of an iTablet.

Quite expensive for a test run.  And canceling and waiting to see if I'll like it when the Nooks are in the stores will likely put me at the back of the line.  I remember I did that with Playstation 2 and I had to wait until February the following year to get my hands on one.  And then there was Wii that out of stock for like...ever.

So, back to iTablet.  It's going to be awesome.  Today, let's get into the print media and how Apple will save their collective butts.

Alright, honestly, I've got my doubts.  Apple is in this to sell iTablets.  If others can make money like the music industry and app developers, I'm sure Cupertino is happy for them.  And if print media like magazines, books, newspapers, and comic books help sell iTablets and manages to make money, Steve Jobs is cool with that as well (so long as Apple gets its cut).

So I read Gizmodo's post about the iTablet "restoring comic books to former glory".  Quite honestly, I think comic books did it to themselves and Apple isn't going to be able to save them much.  First of all, as a comic book collector, I like the action but I also wanted to learn more about the characters, their personal conflicts and demons, and using their brain muscle rather than just muscles.  But things moved away from that.  It was about boobs and bigger badder guns.  Both of which I am for there ought to be a balance.

So, I doubt Apple can restore comic books to its golden age but it can at least help comic writers and developers expand beyond their core audience.  The leading guess right now is that Longbox Digital Inc will play a big role in Apple's plan to make the iTablet the premier platform for digital comics.

Even now, Apple offers comics but in different formats.  One look in the app store and there are dozens if not hundreds of individual apps that exists as comics.  It was inevitable that was the format things were going to take place.  But what made things more interesting is Apple now allows in app purchases.

For iPhone and Touch users, instead of remember to go back to the app store to make the purchase of subsequent comic apps, readers can now simply buy the next chapter in the one app they bought.

Also, Apple offers in the video part of the iTunes store videos dressed up as comic books.  It's hardly the ideal format for hard-core comic readers.

So, we don't know how Apple will save the comic book industry or any other parts of the print industry but from what NY Times' Bill Keller revealed, Apple's iTablet is something the industry has to be ready for and embrace.  There is a video of Keller's presentation and mentioning of "Apple slate" whatever that means.

More at Gizmodo, Gawker

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