Thursday, October 6, 2011
VIBE: Pinoy Ebookstore
Amazon may be the world's largest bookstore but did you know that their system does not have Tagalog Language support? No wonder it's difficult for Pinoys around the world to search for Pinoy books or music in their site.
Yesterday I attended the presentation of VIBE, the country's first ebookstore showcasing Pinoy books, textbooks, magazines and newspapers in ebook format. It is the brainchild of Mr. Gus Vibal, the executive director of Vibal Foundation, whose singular vision is to get Pinoys to read, digitally. He demonstrated the new application at Ayala Technohub's Tech Portal in a Kape + Teknolohiya Forum.
Vibe is a reader application that will run on any device, including iOS, Windows, and Mac OS. Vibal has already converted a host of titles into eBook format, which can be flat, enhanced or interactive. Sights and sounds can become experiential through embedded music and videos.
For those who like to read Pinoy Lit in ebook format, they can now have access to these books more easily than in Amazon or iBooks. Other than major credit cards, the Vibe ebooks may also be purchased using Globe GCash, SMART Money, or Paypal. Pinoy authors can now reach local as well as international audiences more easily as their books go beyond the limitations of their phyiscal forms. Even new writers who long to be published but don't have the connection nor the means can have their works converted for free and made available in Vibe ebookstore.
Another area where ebooks can have a significant impact is education. Remember learning about folk songs like "Atin Cu Pung Singsing' in grade school from a text book? With VIBE our children can learn it from an eTextbook, one which plays the song out for you as the notes appear on a musical staff, and even brings up a lyrics box in both Kapampangan and English to sing along with. Talk about learning by experience (vs learning by reading)! According to Mr. Vibal they are currently interacting with several educational institutions in the country on how to make this technology bring textbooks to a new level.
Vibe will be available for download from vibebookstore.com this October. Early birds who access the site can send an email to get a special discount code.