• Table of contents

    • [+]Preliminaries (3)
    • [+]Introduction (4)
    • [+]Latin America (13)
    • [+]Sub-Saharan Africa (9)
    • [+]Arab World (11)
    • [+]Russia (11)
    • [+]India (11)
    • [+]China (9)
    • [+]Conclusions (6)
    • [+]Appendix (1)
  • Recent comments

    • Sylvain, on the section Traditional publishing and its response to the digital world. Between danger and opportunity:
      Complétement d'accord avec Thierry, en même temps, quelle solution possède une société si ce n'est d'évoluer ? J'aime assez les systèmes d'édition actuels.
    • Testere, on the section Technical difficulties of digital publishing in Arabic: ePub and OCR:
      No need to exaggerate. There is always a work around and following is one of them. For current technology, only way to get accurate text in Arabic is either using pdf or image. With following version you can read you...
    • Liquid book : le livre au fil du ruisseau, on the section Foreword:
      (…) la dernière conférence matinale par Octavio Kulesz qui rendait compte d’une étude sur l’édition électronique dans les pays du Sud restitue il me semble la qualité et la démarches de toutes les interventions : lumineuses (…)
    • chantal, on the section Technical data:
      merci pour la qualité et la clarté des informations que vous véhiculez sur ce site. Nous attirons votre attention sur notre présence dans le secteur du téléchargement de chapitres de livres universitaires. http://www.artelittera.com
    • octavio, on the section Digital technology as an opportunity:
      Tout à fait d'accord! Ce sera essentiel d'aller du bas vers le haut, de l'intérieur vers l'extérieur, si le but est de stimuler des "écosystèmes" numériques locaux durables et solides.
    • thierry quinqueton, on the section Mobile phones:
      Petite contribution aux difficultés de la communication électronique avec la diversité culturelle : mon e-reader sony bugue sur les ideogrammes chinois contenus dans les notes du texte quand je lis au format EPUB (mais tout est ok dans l'étude en...
    • thierry quinqueton, on the section Mobile phones:
      Le témoignage et la présentation de Qian Fucheng est une nouvelle source de réflexion sur l'apparition de nouvelles formes d'écritures et de nouvelles modalités d'édition.
    • thierry quinqueton, on the section The new giants of online transactions:
      Le requin et le crocodile La façon dont est présentée l'histoire de Taobao et de Ebay est riche pour nous éditeurs membres de l'Alliance.
All posts for the month F, Y

Publishers in the face of the digital revolution

So, given the profusion of software, hardware and digital business models, what is happening in the case of Russian publishers? According to Prohorenkov, the relative scarcity of content for new mediums is a bad sign: We are not having much success with digital content. Publishers are afraid of illegal copies and don’t target the market [...]

The advantages of digital, in spite of everything

Technology and the Web are advancing at such a speed in Russia that they appear to exceed the possibilities of traditional publishers. However, it is clear that digital could represent a significant qualitative leap in this country with regard to the distribution of written content. Russian publishing has always faced an obvious obstacle: the problem [...]

Possible trends

Although as yet there are no digital business models in Russia that can entirely supplant the traditional system, there are forces that could accelerate the migration of the industry: Sooner or later the economic crisis that has plagued the book sector since 2008 will lead publishers to reduce print runs and seek new and more [...]


India has extraordinary human capital with regard to IT development. This has enabled it to build up a thriving industry of publishing services and online platforms that can compete against the US giants themselves for variety and dynamism. Among traditional publishers, digital is often seen as an interesting opportunity, although it is not without its [...]

Technical data

Surface area: 3,287,595 km² Population: 1,155,347,678 (2009) Urban population: 66.9% (2009) Language: Hindi is the official language. Each state and territory of the Indian nation has its own official languages, with the Constitution recognizing 22 in total. GDP: US$ 1,310,170,521,447 (2009) GDP per capita: US$ 1,134 (2009) Politics and society: After a long history of [...]

India as a global provider of IT services

In order to analyze experiences related to digital books in India, we must begin by reminding ourselves of the importance that information technology (IT) services have acquired within the country. According to the National Association of Software and Service Companies (NASSCOM), the IT sector represents no less than 6.4% of GDP and 26% of exports.[1] [...]

Publishing services companies

The championing of the software industry has made India a global centre for publishing-related technological services. There are countless companies of varying sizes offering services that include digitization, text recognition (OCR), conversion to ePub and layout. In one survey disseminated by Valuenotes in early 2010, 66% of publishers interviewed from the US and the UK [...]

Selling printed books through the Web

Many entrepreneurs from the IT world in India have dedicated themselves to e-commerce. Sachin and Binny Bansal, both computer science graduates of the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, opened the store FlipKart in 2007. Like Amazon – a company in which they had previously worked –, they began by selling physical books, but have now branched out [...]

Stores that sell electronic publications. The emergence of digital ecosystems

Let’s look now at some of the sites that have made inroads into the distribution of digital books and magazines. The virtual bookstore Odyssey360, for example, offers freely downloadable e-books in PDF through a link received by email. The texts are on subjects related to marketing, computing, health and self-help. In addition to almost 14,000 [...]

Public sector efforts: scientific repositories, virtual libraries and mass-market devices

If, as we have sought to show, Indian commercial platforms demonstrate remarkable dynamism, free-access websites are certainly not to be outdone. First of all, we find hundreds of institutional repositories built using free and open source software – in particular EPrints and DSpace. A considerable number of these portals host texts related to applied sciences and [...]

Cell phones

Despite the efforts of public and private bodies, neither fixed Internet connections nor e-readers, or tablets have mass penetration in India today. As occurs in sub-Saharan Africa, the only devices that are found on a wide scale are cell phones. In late 2010, India had around 752 million cell phone users, and to give an [...]

Indian publishers and experimentation with digital tools

It must be recognized that for Indian publishers, experimentation with new technologies is not an exotic option but rather an extremely valuable opportunity. On its portal, a long-established publishing house like Pustak Mahal proclaims itself to be “India’s largest publisher of mass appeal books” and at the same time “the first Indian publisher to be [...]

The digital age: challenges and proposals

Of course, not all Indian publishers show the same enthusiasm for new technologies. In fact a significant number of associated problems are mentioned repeatedly in the comments we have collected. Below we will give a brief description of these difficulties, as well as a number of proposals aimed at mitigating them. 1) To begin with, [...]

Possible trends

At any rate, digital publishing in India will be positively impacted by a series of powerful tendencies that will carve out a new landscape in the medium and long term: To begin with, we are already witnessing a social phenomenon that will leave a profound imprint: the emergence of a new middle class hungry for [...]


Of all the developing countries, China is perhaps the most advanced in terms of digital publishing. E-reader manufacturers, digital ecosystems and mobile phone companies have a huge market volume, as well as plentiful economic resources. The State, for its part, keeps an iron grip on all the players’ movements and actively encourages the restructuring of [...]

Technical data

Surface area: 9,596,960 km2. Population: 1,331,460,000 (2009) Urban population: 44% (2009) GDP (nominal): US$ 4,984,731,371,688 (2009) GDP per capita: US$ 3,744 (2009) Unemployment: 4.2% (2009, official figures) Official language: Mandarin (Putonghua). There are a host of local dialects. Politics and society: China is a socialist republic governed by the Communist Party. It is the most [...]

The world’s factory. China’s leading role in e-reader production

As is well known, China has for decades been a world centre for manufacturing all kinds of goods including footwear, textiles, toys, chemical products and electronic items. Over 30 years after the first economic reforms of Deng Xiaoping, its low labour costs and its growing domestic market have made China one of the most dynamic [...]

The new giants of online transactions

The extraordinary flow of goods towards foreign and domestic markets has enabled the emergence of major players in electronic commerce in China. Around 1999, the Chinese entrepreneur Ma Yun – Jack Ma –, a native of Hangzhou, created the site Alibaba, in partnership with 17 co-founders, as a trading platform for importers and exporters of all kinds [...]

Ecosystems and private digital aggregators

As we have pointed out in other sections, one of the ways to elude the process of price cannibalization affecting hardware industries and online sales is by developing ecosystems that integrate different units of the business. In the case of digital publishing, one alternative would be to combine the sale of content with the distribution [...]

Migration to digital, a State policy

As we recalled at the beginning of the chapter, China has been undertaking economic reforms for over 30 years. Since 2001 in particular – when the country joined the World Trade Organization –, the Chinese public sector has been going through a process of significant restructuring, and both publishing houses and bookstores have accompanied this shift. [...]

Mobile phones

If the earnings brought in by e-books scarcely amounted to 1.83% of the electronic publishing sector in 2009, there was another field that performed far better. Indeed, according to GAPP itself, content for mobile phones represented 40% of that same total, meaning that the platform on which the greatest flow of digital content is circulating [...]

The many challenges of the digital age

As we have attempted to highlight, new technologies are profoundly transforming the Chinese publishing world. However, there are many challenges to be faced by publishers in this digital age – particularly by small and medium players with private capital.[1] To begin with, digital piracy is a spectre that, for obvious reasons, looms large over all publishing [...]

Possible trends

There are a number of forces within Chinese digital publishing that are likely to be sustained in the medium term. Below we will enumerate the most significant trends that we have identified: First of all, like in Brazil and India, a new middle class is being rapidly incorporated into the market, particularly in the consumption [...]

Thematic axes

As we have attempted to demonstrate thus far, digital publishing displays considerable dynamism and diversity within the developing world. Below we will rearrange these geographical results along the following recurrent thematic axes – technologies, the human factor and the R&D variable. This will allow us to broaden the proposals already outlined in each region and draw [...]

Technological infrastructure

From the point of view of technology, there are four prime movers that continually crop up: POD, online platforms, e-readers – and tablets – and mobile phones. POD, which is relatively strong in Latin America, is less widespread in sub-Saharan Africa and the Arab world, in spite of the important advance this tool might represent in countries [...]