Add a Soundtrack to Your Reading Experience with Booktrack

September 7, 2011

1:20 pm

Your favorite movies have their own unique soundtracks, and now your favorite books can, too. Founded by Paul Cameron, Booktrack is a startup that is changing reading – and the publishing industry – forever.

Booktrack creates synchronized soundtracks for ebooks to enhance the reader’s imagination and engagement. Combining music, sound effects and ambient sound, Booktrack’s technology automatically paces itself to an individual’s reading speed.

“It’s difficult to imagine a movie with no soundtrack; yet, until today, the technology did not exist to synchronize music and sound within an ebook,” said Paul Cameron. “Consider the reality of tens of millions of commuters around the world listening to a playlist that’s disconnected from what they’re reading – perhaps a sad song with an upbeat story. Instead, they can now instantly replicate a movie-like sound experience with Booktrack that fundamentally transforms their reading experience.”

Booktrack has a stellar list of supporters and fans. Investors include Peter Thiel, co-founder and former CEO of PayPal, and a member of Facebook’s board of directors. Major publishing houses, such as HarperCollins, as well as the music industry giant, Sony/ATV, have partnered with Booktrack, too.

Booktrack represents an entirely new direction for the publishing industry. Composers, authors, musicians, and publishing houses are working together to create a new experience in media consumption. A new business model is emerging, too, as these formerly separate industries work together to create new products and share profits.

“It’s always exciting to witness the creation of a new form of media,” said Peter Thiel. “Booktrack’s technology promises to captivate readers in a way that will seem intuitive in hindsight, and compelling ever after.”

One of my first thoughts while reading about Booktrack was how much fun it would be to read a story to a child using this technology. My three-year-old nephew loves it when I make sound effects while reading his favorite books to him; Booktracks could really make the book come alive for him in a way that my admittedly inferior sound effects never could.

Upcoming Booktrack releases include “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn,” “The Three Musketeers,” “Pride and Prejudice,” “Jane Eyre,” “The Tale of Peter Rabbit” and more. You can download Booktracks in the Apple App store for your iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch.

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Meg Rayford is a communications consultant based in Northern Virginia. She previously spent two years as the Director of Public Relations for a nonprofit startup, where she learned a lot about providing clean water for impoverished countries, even within the confines of a bootstrapped startup.

She is the editor of Tech Cocktail, and she develops media strategies for companies in Washington, DC and Virginia. You can read her most recent work in the marketing chapter of the upcoming book, “Social Innovation and Impact in Nonprofit Leadership,” which will be published in Spring 2014 by Springer Publishing. Follow her @megkrayford.

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