Yesterday, Music Ally attended the Futurebook conference in London, to get a sense of how book publishers are working with apps and new digital technologies. It included case studies from the likes of Random House, Pan Macmillan, Penguin, Faber and HarperCollins. So, Pan Macmillan has been using 3D sound for an e-book by Ken Follett; Penguin chopped up Stephen Fry’s latest autobiography into a colour-wheel tag index; Profile Books is publishing a novel which uses links, QR codes, YouTube videos and audio recordings; and Faber has just released an iPad version of T.S. Eliot’s poem The Waste Land with all manner of multimedia bells and whistles. Two points made by speakers jumped out at us as having relevance for the music industry. First, there was a big theme of partnership with developers, with publishers identifying talented app creators and working with them over a succession of projects. Second, HarperCollins talked about the need for a ‘Calm Down Phase’ when planning new apps, to think hard about which whizzy features and content will really be relevant to the target audience. Source: MobileEntertainment

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