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  • Apple adds Breakout Books to the iBookstore to spotlight the self-published

    Apple adds Breakout Books to the iBookstore to give the selfpublished their due

    As glad as we are that digital bookstores let authors skip the usual gatekeepers, that doesn’t help much if they can’t get noticed. Apple is giving those self-publishing writers more of a chance to shine with the launch of a permanent Breakout Books section in the US iBookstore. The section highlights hot-selling and well-reviewed independent books, many of them from distributors like Smashwords. Don’t see the placement as a purely altruistic gesture, though: many of the books sell for significantly less than their peers from major publishers, which might help Apple snag a few more impulse purchases than it would otherwise. We doubt there will be many complaints when the category could pad both sides’ wallets.

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    Via: New York Times

    Source: iTunes, Smashwords

  • Jelly Bean now on 13 percent of Android devices, 45 percent still on Gingerbread

    Android numbers

    The beginning of another month marks yet another fancy pie chart on the Android Developers Dashboard consisting of the latest usage statistics. The Dashboard, which reports the percentage of users on each build of the OS based on Google Play Store traffic, indicates that a full 12 percent of Android owners are enjoying 4.1 Jelly Bean, while 29 percent are on Ice Cream Sandwich. This leaves a solid 45 percent of users still flaunting Gingerbread, and a mere 1.4 percent are taking advantage of the most recent build of Jelly Bean (Android 4.2) on a Nexus device. Diving a little deeper in the number crunching, it shows that 42.6 percent of all current Android users are sporting at least Ice Cream Sandwich or later. And to the 0.2 percent of you still clinging onto your Donut devices, we salute you.

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    Via: Android Central

    Source: Android Developers Dashboard

  • TomTom intros iPhone app for its taxi trial service, helps Dutch get home quickly

    TomTom releases iPhone app for its taxi trial service, helps Dutch get home quickly

    There’s been a perpetual catch with TomTom’s taxi hailing service in Amsterdam (and now Rotterdam): passengers have to hail from a specific terminal, which isn’t much help when they just need a ride home from the club at 2AM. The Dutch don’t have to necessarily forgo one convenience for another now that there’s an iPhone app. Edging closer to services like Uber, the TomTomTaxi app lets travelers order a cab from their own devices, learn about drivers and choose favorite drivers if they have good experiences. The software may keep rude surprises to a minimum, as well, when both the driver and travelers can see the fastest route for themselves. Expansion outside of the Netherlands is still a mystery, although there’s an Android app on the way that should cover a larger swath of taxi seekers.

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    Via: The Next Web

    Source: TomTom, App Store

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