Digital News Report – The 2010 Consumer Electronics Show (2010 CES) will be remembered for the selection of e-readers. Various companies are introducing tablets, readers, and slates including Dell, HP, Archos, Lenovo and Sony.
The goal is to sign users up with a monthly bill for content or to sell books. Sure the readers are expensive, but with their touch screens they are an expensive item to manufacture. To make real money they need monthly subscriptions .
All of the readers need to come with some way for customers to buy books. It may always cost money to read new books online, but right now nearly all newspapers are free to internet surfers. But that may change.
Struggling newspapers are looking for alternatives. Google has recently begun offering mico-payments so readers can purchase individual articles from newspapers. You may get a synopsis for free, but if you want to read the whole article expect to pay a few cents it.
But will a few cents here-and-there keep these mammoth newspapers afloat? These few cents will need to be used to pay the writer, the news publisher, the secretaries, legal department and even the janitors.
Newspapers will likely be turning more and more to these e-readers for revenue. It is better to get customers to pay a monthly or yearly subscription than hope they will buy one article at a time.
Fox announced last month that they worked out a deal with Sony to provide news for their reader. Fox (News Corp) includes Dow Jones papers like The Wall Street Journal and Market Watch.
The goal is to provide exclusive content for a fee. Fox will be charging $15 a month for the morning WSJ. For $5 more they will include updates throughout the day. Sony’s Chief Executive, Howard Stringer said citing a Forrester Research report: “We feel we’re riding to the rescue of news.”
By: Mark Williams