Random House is working with digital media agency Smashing Ideas to create a series of children’s apps as it continues to expand its digital offerings. Earlier this year, the publisher formed a small unit to create books tied to new and existing video game titles in an attempt to compensate for the weakness in other parts of the book business. It will work with Smashing Ideas’ ePublishing group, which is headed by the co-creator and developer of the Alice for iPad, which is the Lewis Carroll story that comes complete with interactive illustrations.
The Alice iPad app appears to be a model for many publishers looking for a way to grow their digital sales. At least for the moment, the youth market seems like the best bet for book apps. Simon & Schuster have given the idea of book apps a lot of thought the past few years. The introduction of the iPad and the range of interactivity it provides versus more straight-up e-readers makes the marketing decisions a bit easier. In July, it was able to issue an “enhanced e-book” for Rick Perlstein