12bn iPad Apps Totaling $8bn Predicted, How Many Will be Books?

In Ed's Perspective by Edward Nawotka


By Edward Nawotka

I haven’t pre-ordered an iPad yet. I’m still waiting to see if there are any takers for my Kindle II and the Bose SoundDock II I won at SXSW (Interested in either, email me, as a loyal reader I’ll do you a deal). But as the hype mounts, it’s getting more difficult to resist. What has been surprising to me is just how certain about how the iPad will “change this” and “change that” about the publishing industry. There were even panels at SXSW stating as much, forgoing the fact the device isn’t out and few if any people outside Apple have seen one. Until April 3, it’s all supposition.

While I maintain that the iPad is still just a computer, it will have an impact on the way media is consumed, that much we know. Whether people will be consuming books or games or dirty movies on it is another question altogether. Among the more interesting suppositions to come out about the iPad recently is the suggestion that the market for apps alone will top $8 billion within five years.

It’s an amazing statistic: $8 billion is 20% of the size of the total $40 billion publishing business in the United States. Talk about radical market creation.

What’s more, the same article, from GigOM, say “downloads of apps (both paid and free/ad-supported) will grow to total more than 12 billion by 2015 from 272 million in 2010.” Uh, wow.

Now, the question is, how many of those apps will be stand-alone books? Let’s hope plenty.

PS: There’s also an interesting article at FastCompany.com suggesting that the iPad is “an absolutely perfect promotional giveaway.”

About the Author

Edward Nawotka

A widely published critic and essayist, Edward Nawotka serves as a speaker, educator and consultant for institutions and businesses involved in the global publishing and content industries. He was also editor-in-chief of Publishing Perspectives since the launch of the publication in 2009 until January 2016.