It’s still the very early days of e-books, enhanced e-books and book apps for children. An e-book is a digital snapshot of a book, an enhanced e-book adds multimedia and interactive features to the linear story, and a book app is based on a book but acts more like a game, with multiple pathways that require the user to interact instead of simply scrolling and clicking.
High tech reading outlets such as tablets that make children’s books a more attractive play for publishers, have been around for a limited period of time. As such, academic research on their efficacy as educational tools has yet to provide extensive results. Scholars, observers and industry players are moving towards reaching a generalized consensus; that as getting kids interested in reading is of utmost importance, there is a clear opportunity for reading to become digitized and to extend beyond the traditional hardcopy approach, in order to harvest the technological benefits.
The production of a complex, quality book-based app requires a team that includes authors, programmers, graphic designers, professional actors and custom narration, music soundtrack and sound effects, interactivity, editors and page layout designers for the different devices. All these creative services (and others, directly or indirectly, related to the electronic and legacy publishing) are being provided mainly by freelancers and micro companies.
Even though parents still prefer their kids to read print, kids’ books are on the cutting edge of eBook innovation. On the other hand, growing numbers of children’s book publishers, authors and readers are concerned that the dominant children’s book marketplaces don’t care enough about children’s books or e-books, and they are treating them like any other catalogue product, as opposed to recognizing their crucial educational and cultural value.
To serve the needs of the European Children e-book industry, the consortium proposes “Q-Tales”, a Collaboration Ecosystem, where European Creative SMEs, Experts and Parents, co-create new or transform available Children’s Literature into high quality e-books & Apps. The Q-Tales ecosystem consists of innovative ICT solutions provided by European ICT SMEs, along with a Curation Framework provided by European Academic experts in the field of Pedagogy, Child Psychology and evolutionary Psychology. Q-Tales aspires to become the first and largest vertical approach in the European e-book industry.
Co-funded by the European Union under the Horizon 2020 programme
- Omegatech, Greece
- RealGroup, UK
- Ortelio, UK
- Publisto, Greece
- Istituto Romano per la Formazione Imprenditoriale, Italy
- Izba Przemyslowo – Handlowa, Poland
- Gamifico, UK
- Megaprojects, Greece