Viva la digital audiobook sublimation

The New York Times published Say So Long to an Old Companion on the 28th of July.

The image above is the invitation from the audio department at Hachette for a party to mourn (read: celebrate) the passing of the cassette technology. Their final audiobook released on cassette was “Sail,” by James Patterson and Howard Roughan in June of 2008.

Cassettes held out far longer for audiobooks than music because they allow the listener to resume wherever they left off, in any device that supports a cassette (getting harder to find these). CDs took up about half of the audiobook market and digital download is already looking to surpass CDs in music.

This is great for me and the team, working on audiobook digital downloads. Developing software distribution allows an amazing amount of flexibility and ease of use. Digital allows us to resume where the customer left off (benefit of cassette), as well as provide a deeper connection through metadata and images. Through our Zip process, we help make it easy to put the audiobook on a device such as an iPod, WMA player, Windows Mobile or PalmOS phone.

Kind of like ice sublimation, audiobooks will sublimate directly to digital. No need to stop at a usurped physical media.

Audiobooks for the courageous

I wrote a quick note a few days ago about Roz Savage and her efforts to cross the Pacific Ocean on a row boat (she’s doing quite well and just wrote her day 39 entry). It’s an extremely cool adventure.

Since then I’ve been catching the daily entry on the blog at  Something pretty cool has surfaced in her writing, at least to me… Audiobooks! She’s got an iPod with 300+ audiobooks and has been commenting on them along the way (check out day 38, day 19, day 9, day 4, etc).

She’s generating podcasts with Leo Laporte as well.

iofy digital audiobook platform acquired by Ingram Digital

“Ingram Digital, an Ingram Content company focused on solutions for digital content management, hosting, distribution and promotion, today announced it has acquired the iofy digital audiobook platform from Audiofy Corporation.”

It’s official. As described in the press release, the iofy digital audiobook platform is now part of Ingram Digital. I’m happy about this move. This is the iofy development team I lead and I’m confident our acquisition will bring incredible value and additional ingenuity. We’ll now be building something amazing, which iofy wouldn’t have had the resources for on its own.

Other than some title changes, the team and focus are unchanged. Cartwright Reed, iofy’s President, is now in the role of Vice President of Product Development at Ingram Digital. My team is continuing the charge to build the best audiobook platform available (look for continued web service goodness).

The culture at both companies is driven by growth, creativity, and building solutions. I’ve had only positive experiences working with the folks at Ingram. They’re great people, and we’re looking forward to being part of an Ingram company.

A spontanious and unsolicited positive review

A YouTube video spread like wildfire around the iofy office today…

At a startup you look forward to the day when people recognize your product and respond with positive words. At iofy we’ve received many many positive letters, thank you notes and feedback, but this is the first video we’ve found reviewing our audiobook chip product. It was entirely unsolicited.

Random House really going DRM-free


Yesterday I asked the question, “Random House DRM-free a hoax? The question was based on Cory Doctorow’s post announcing a big move by Random House towards DRM-free MP3 audiobooks. The PDF on his site links to a letter by Madeline McIntosh detailing the move to Random House’s partners.

Since my post both Cory and Madeline have confirmed the validity of the letter. Thank you to both for following up and answering the question.