We’ve Got Updates – Right Here!

Some updates on previous posts:

giftboxesAre eReaders going to be the “got-to-have-it” gadget for holiday gifting this year? Barnes & Noble has launched its own dedicated eReader, the Nook. They already offer an electronic book platform that can be used on PCs, iPods and other devices. The wars are escalating as Amazon has just introduced a free application designed to enable Kindle owners to read electronic books on their PCs. While Forrester Research reports that most bibiophiles are still looking for significant price drops (below $99) before they are willing to invest in an eReader device, will the increased number of electronic book platforms across existing and dedicated devices make the printed blockbuster a thing of the past?

lv2The Virtual Goods market is skyrocketing. US sales of virtual goods have doubled in just a single year and are expected to exceed $1 billion in 2009. And many consumers are indulging their recession- thwarted desire for luxury goods by spoiling their online alter-egos. Sales of fashion and accessories in the virtual universe Second Life account for 40% its the marketplace, as players outfit their avatars with the latest Gucci, Prada and Jimmy Choo gear that they are no longer able to afford in the real world.

And lastly, guess who’s joining the parade to Pop-up Stores? While it was played for laughs in the hit comedy “The 40-Year Old Virgin“, online auction leader eBay is planning to use temporary mobile locations to generate awareness and to familiarize shoppers with their web functionality. You saw it first… in the movies!

Battle of the eReaders

robots2Just last month, Barnes & Noble announced their new eBooks platform, explicitly seeking to take their share of the eReader market currently dominated by Amazon.com’s Kindle.

David Pogue, The New York Times’ Personal Technology writer offers a good side-by-side comparison of the two platforms in this video. Key differences:

  • The Kindle is priced at $299 for a basic model; the eBooks platform is free to download
  • Kindle’s exclusive reader software can also be used on iPhones and iPod Touch, while B&N’s eBooks can be downloaded to any PC, Mac, iPod, Blackberry, iPhone
  • Amazon’s library covers over 345,000 titles; Barnes & Noble offers 700,000

So, who are you betting on in the battle of the eReaders? Will electronic books replace printed editions and maybe stem the decline in reading for pleasure?

Hot off the presses – another player enters the fray: Sony just announced the launch of their own electronic reader, timed for the holiday gift season. Sony’s touchscreen-enabled reader, dubbed the Daily Edition, will retail for $399; a partnership with the New York Public Library will allow 21 day access to over 29,000 titles.

The games are on!