Apple iPad and The Tablet Tidal Wave
“Don’t let it come crashing down on you”
Defying all expectations, Apple’s iPad is selling over 1 million units monthly since inception. The rise of eBooks is unstoppable. Sure, you can be a naysayer; I was. I like my print newspaper and my hardback books, thank you very much.
But its time to wake up to the fact that print book sales are declining:
And while print book sales are declining, ebook sales are exploding. Amazon announced recently that eBook sales surpassed print book sales for the first time. Im sure that trend is irreversible.
We see the rise of eBook stores coupled with eBook and Tablet readers creating perfect ecosystems of authors, publishers, and consumers. The most oft-trotted out example is of course Apple, with its iPad tablet and iTunes inspired eBookstore.
Although they paved the way for others to follow, Apple isnt alone. Google, Amazon, Barnes and Noble and others have placed big bets on eBook stores and intend to be very competitive against Apple with open-systems, device independence, and lower prices.
We are currently tracking 35 iPad like tablet computers coming from three different supplier categories. Inevitably, with this many new entrants rushing products to market, there will be skinned knees aplenty, providing fodder for the naysayers. I can hear it now, This thing is terrible, the books keep crashing on me theres a virus in my book the dog ate my homework.
Despite potentially buggy hardware and software products coming to market from a rash of new vendors, the potential for eBooks is just too powerful. And not just for individuals, but for organizations too. The strengths outweigh the weaknesses today and we expect the powerful features and functions to rise sharply while the weaknesses will quickly be mitigated.
Imagine starting a new job and being handed your iPad, two weeks before your first day. You immerse yourself in a talking book, reading, listening, watching, questioning, and thinking. You are connected to your new-hire peers, company experts and leaders, and have videos of the CEO and other senior leaders describing the vision, strategy, and key business challenges facing the company.
At Corporate University Xchange, we issue Must-Do bulletins when our research shows an early critical trend that will hit mainstream in 18-24 months. We recommend that Learning Organizations try a pilot project with iPads, tablets, or eReaders to get a feel for how they will work in your organization. These experiments should be short duration and low cost, using as little corporate infrastructure as possible for the pilot. The goal of the pilot is to capture and codify lessons-learned; to fail-fast and iterate. There is no single correct way forward for your organization, so dont be afraid to experiment.
Here are the eBook / Tablet Must-Dos for 2011:
Please feel free to comment on this article and watch the 5-minute presentation titled The Tablet Tidal-wave. CorpU clients may schedule free Analyst Briefings to discuss key strategic imperatives and learning architecture considerations surrounding the eBook and Tablet revolution.