Our last session before lunch on this third and final day of the DBW conference was given over to what I had hoped would be a serious interview. Alas, if Amazon's Russ Grandinetti didn't say much during his interview yesterday, Apple's Ken Moerer said even less today.
My notes totaled 5 lines, and aside from warm and fuzzy non-statements Moerer really only said three things, none of which were very informative.
- For example, iBooks is active in 51 countries 5 years after the April 2010 launch. (They're not selling ebooks in all 51 countries, just present.)
- iBooks recently hit 1 billion downloads. (That's downloads, and not sales, which probably amount to fewer than 10% of downloads.)
- And iBooks has been picking up an average of 1 million new customers a week since September. (Given that iBooks comes pre-installed on iOS8, all of the newly activated iDevices on new accounts count as new customers. How many are actually buying ebooks, we don't know.)
All in all, that was a waste of an interview, and I blame Michael Cader for only lobbing softballs at Moerer. I agree with Len Edgerly; Shatzkin was much more challenging and intense when he grilled Grandinetti yesterday.
Update: It's been pointed out to me on a mailing list that Apple sells considerably more than 1 million devices a week, so that "million new customers" probably does represent people who opened the app and downloaded an ebook.