Saturday, January 23, 2010

Apple Sees New Money In Old Media

Less than a week from today, Apple will launch a new gadget (rumoured to be called an iSlate) that they hope will do for books and magazines what their iPod did for music. From The Wall Street Journal, Apple Sees New Money In Old Media--Steve Jobs's Tablet Device Looks To Repackage TV, Magazines, Just As iPod Changed Music Sales. An excerpt:

With the new tablet device that is debuting next week, Apple Inc. Chief Executive Steve Jobs is betting he can reshape businesses like textbooks, newspapers and television much the way his iPod revamped the music industry—and expand Apple's influence and revenue as a content middleman.

In developing the device, Apple focused on the role the gadget could play in homes and in classrooms, say people familiar with the situation. The company envisions that the tablet can be shared by multiple family members to read news and check email in homes, these people say.

For classrooms, Apple has been exploring electronic-textbook technology. Apple also has been looking at how content from newspapers and magazines can be presented differently on the tablet, according to the people familiar with the situation. Other people briefed on the device say the tablet will come with a virtual keyboard.

Apple has recently been in discussions with book, magazine and newspaper publishers about how they can work together. The company has talked with New York Times Co., Condé Nast Publications Inc. and HarperCollins Publishers and its owner News Corp., which also owns The Wall Street Journal, over content for the tablet, say people familiar with the talks.

New York Times Chairman Arthur Sulzberger declined to comment in an interview Wednesday on its involvement in the new device except to say, "stay tuned."

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