June 6, 2014 Last Updated 8:37 am

Hachette Book Group lays off 28; Amazon sets date for rumored smartphone launch; media and platform app updates

The Washington Post and the Daily Mail update their iPad apps; MAZ Digital and WordPress make bug fixes and all new features

The news that Hachette Book Group is eliminating 28 positions, a small percentage of its US staff, might be a sign that the battle with Amazon is taking its toll on the publisher… or it might not. The move comes after Stephen Colbert, soon to leave his current show to replace Dave Letterman as the host of the Late Show on CBS, gave Amazon’s CEO Jeff Bezos the finger on national television for delaying shipments of his book – a sure sign that the battle between the two companies now will enter the mainstream.

Meanwhile, in the midst of all the bad publicity, Amazon appears set to introduce a smartphone at a Seattle event on June 18. That gives the company just under two weeks to see if it can put this news behind it so it can effectively launch its new product.

Both the Daily Mail and The Washington Post update their iPad editions yesterday. The update for Mail Plus for iPad is described as only offering “general app updates. The Post’s update for The Washington Post for iPad is a little more extensive, adding in a new Technology section, and adding more Opinion columnist content into the tablet edition. There are also bug fiches and a redesigned Weather section.

To publishing platforms also updated their iOS apps: WordPress was updated its app to fix a crash that sometimes occurs upon startup, and there are updated translations for Thai, Korean, Japanese, Russian and Indonesian languages.

MAZ Digital updated its Stream Web app, a mobile browser app that probably confuses many App Store buyers – do we really need another browser? – but has gotten very good reviews from those that have tried out the app.

The app update now fixes an issue where the tabs went away when you closed down the app, and now URLs copied from other apps will automatically open in a new tab. Users can now press down on an image to create a clip, as well.

Comments are closed.