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The recent Hachette and Amazon standoff got me thinking again about the e-reader.
Of all the transformations of physical media to digital, I can’t think of one that has rumbled on and divided audiences like the paperback to ebook.
Arguably not CD to MP3, maybe because people could still burn CDs from iTunes (the move to subscription music was more gradual) whereas people can’t print their ebooks on a whim.
Arguably calls to SMS to messaging apps, DVDs to streaming, physical games to computer games, these were easy transitions.
Here are the top 25 US brands of 2013, according to YouGov's BrandIndex.
This is based on brand perception, acquired by conducting approximately 2.5m interviews a year and asking the question "If you've heard anything about the brand in the last two weeks through advertising, news or word of mouth, was it positive or negative?"
It seems the most popular brand of 2013 in terms of positive regard is Amazon.com, which has overtaken Ford as America's corporate sweetheart.
During the run-up to Christmas, which companies are bidding on paid search terms for the most popular products, and which have the most effective landing pages?
I took a look at paid search in my beginner’s guide what is paid search (PPC) and why do you need it? last month, and since then I’ve been a lot more attuned to this method of search engine marketing.
However I've also realised that PPC ads are for nothing, and a complete waste of searcher's time and an advertiser’s money, if conversion isn’t happening.
The $329 iPad mini may be selling like hotcakes, but that isn't fazing one of Apple's biggest competitors in the tablet market. According to Amazon, the Kindle Fire HD has not only survived the launch of a smaller, cheaper iPad, it's actually thriving.
That may suggest that the iPad mini and Kindle Fire HD aren't really competing with each other, but don't tell that to Amazon. The online retail giant thinks that the iPad mini is a juicy target and is using its homepage to prove the point.
Amazon is the master of online retailing, and is proving that it's capable of making it easy for consumers to find and buy whatever they're looking for across digital channels.
But don't let Amazon's ecommerce dominance fool you: the company's ambitions extend well beyond simply selling product. Increasingly, the company is looking to take advantage of its position to extend its reach into new markets, including, now, advertising.
The Harry Potter series is one of the most popular series of books ever written, but if you're looking for your fix of wizardry, you'll have to put your Kindle down.
That's because Harry Potter's author, J.K. Rowling, has refused to sell her books in digital format directly through companies like Amazon.
According to new research from the Pew Internet & American Life Project, 21% of American adults have read an e-book in the past year. In mid-December, that number stood at 17%.
Chalk that increase up to the rise of affordable e-readers and tablets, like the Kindle Fire and NOOK Tablet, which many Americans received as gifts this past holiday season.
As ebooks become a more prominent part of the publishing market, authors, publishers and digital distributors like Amazon are increasingly experimenting with new formats.
One of those formats is the 'esingle'. As the name suggests, these are ebooks that are fairly short (usually longer than a magazine article but shorter than a full book).
Typically sold in the range of 99 cents to $2, or 70p to £2, the value proposition of esingles to the consumer is simple: quality content, no bloat.
With the iPad, Apple is the dominant tablet manufacturer and with the Kindle Fire, Amazon has become the company to watch in the tablet space.
But don't write bookseller Barnes & Noble (B&N) off. Its NOOK business, which started with E Ink e-readers, now has two tablets in its stable, the NOOK Color and the NOOK Tablet.
Amazon has announced a new partnership with Viacom which allows Amazon Prime members and Kindle Fire owners to stream unlimited television onto their devices.
Extending Amazon's partnership to include streaming puts them ahead of the race against Netflix and the new Verizon and Redbox partnership as the retail giant looks to capitalize on a market wanting more TV on demand.
Amazon is said to be opening a trial brick-and-mortar store in Seattle to see if a chain of shops could be profitable.
Though this might seem like a step backwards for Amazon, the need to give its tablets and e-readers a physical shop window seems to be the main motivation.
Amazon is said to be launching a Kindle smartphone in 2012, according to reports.
Citigroup analyst Mark Mahaney is quoted on AllThingsDigital saying that the device is set for launch in Q4 next year.