iPad Multimedia Book Apps Need OTA Management: Case in Point – The Velveteen Rabbit

A classic children’s book just went on sale.

The Velveteen Rabbit

The normally $3.99 app is now free. The app has a 4.5 star average rating (out of a possible 5), has beautiful illustrations, and provides a reading by Academy Award winning actress Meryl Streep. The app also weighs in at a somewhat huge 366MB. The $9.99 Lights, Camera, Capture! iPad Multimedia eBook App is similarly heavy at 328MB. Noting the size of these multimedia book apps is not a criticism. Their sizes reflect the storage requirements for quality audio, images, and video. What I am concerned with is the lack of some kind of standard platform for multimedia books (which I am in favor of).

Amazon’s Kindle app provides support for multimedia ebooks. However, it might not have the flexibility desired by multimedia book producers. The result is that many multimedia ebooks are one-of apps that are not easily managed. ComiXology’s Marvel and DC comic book apps provide an easy way to delete comic book issues to free up space as well as the ability to retrieve the deleted content over the air (OTA) without needing to sync with a computer. Amazon’s Kindle app as well as Audible’s audio book app (Audible is owned by Amazon) also provides management of their content. Their content can be archived and retrieved later OTA.

The multimedia ebook publishing industry needs some kind of platform standard that goes beyond Amazon’s current multimedia offering to give customers OTA content management. In a relatively restricted resource environment like the iPad specifically and tablets in general, app/media storage management is critical.