Penguin New Zealand has stepped up their production of e-book apps for the iPad with the release of two more QBook titles. Children’s titles; ‘Wheelbarrow Wilbur’ and ‘That’s Not Junk’ are currently available from the App Store, and they have also been optimized for the iPad.
This follows the highly publicized presentation from Penguin Group CEO John Makinson which promoted the range of Penguin initiatives for the iPad and how the company is being proactive in maximizing all the functions and features of the iPad to tell stories.
Jeff Atkinson, General Manager, Publishing and Production Penguin Group (NZ), believes the time is right for publishers to push the boundaries and redefine the industry.
“The introduction of the iPad will change the way we see our world,” says Atkinson. “We cannot be a spectator sitting on the sidelines, publishers have to get on the pitch and get in the game. We owe it to our authors and to our readers to take maximum advantage of new ways to bring our content to life.
Kiwa Media’s partnership with Penguin is a reflection of the ‘new world order’ in digital publishing and signals the growing importance of the relationship between developer and book publisher.
“The objective with Penguin was to achieve easy entry into the digital arena and be fully prepared for the iPad. We quickly established a business model that was relatively low risk, but with the potential of significant financial returns for both parties,” says Roger Shakes, VP Business Development, Kiwa Media.
“We wanted to offer the consumer an exciting and engaging experience with a product that is high quality. QBook has delivered all this and more. The partnership is working well and I see no reason why Penguin shouldn’t have a range of interactive e-book apps on the iPad in a variety of genres in the months ahead.”
The speed and quality of QBook production was achieved, in part, following the introduction of Kiwa Media’s Content Interactive Tool (CUT) which has significantly reduced production time and removed the need for a developer to be involved in the production of the book.
“CUT is a great tool for building interactive e-book apps on the iPad,” states Shakes. We’ve got the production team working on the iPad simulator optimizing QBooks for the iPad. This gives publishers confidence to place large orders knowing the development time and costs are relatively low. We can produce QBooks in huge numbers now which is really exciting.”
Recently released Penguin titles 'Wheelbarrow Wilbur' and 'That’s Not Junk' are followed by two new QBooks from the Milly, Molly series; 'Milly, Molly and Alf' and 'Milly, Molly and Betelgeuse'. The introduction of the Japanese language versions opening the way for more Asian character scripts for release in future QBook titles. The unique spelling functionality of the QBook opens up very exciting possibilities for the Asian languages.
“In the digital world there are no territories so you have to offer consumers content in their localized language to maximize sales,” says Shakes. “We’ve now recorded QBooks in English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, German, Italian, Maori and Japanese. Next on the list is Chinese where we believe the market for QBooks is going to be huge.”
Kiwa Media will be at the London Book Fair in April, Book Expo America in New York in May and the Hong Kong Book Fair in July 2010.
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