Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Books Google

Google Takes On Amazon With Own E-Book Store 152

Posted by kdawson
from the real-page-turner dept.
CWmike writes "Google announced on Thursday that next year it's launching an online e-book store called Google Editions where users will be able to buy digital books that can be read on a range of gadgets, including e-book readers, laptops, and cell phones. Press reports out of Germany, where it was announced, note that Google plans to offer up half a million e-books from the get-go. Dan Olds, an analyst with The Gabriel Consulting Group, said, 'The market leader, Amazon, built its position with a closed device, Kindle, which is limited to reading and buying eBooks. It will be interesting to see how well it stacks up against Google's strategy of delivering e-book capabilities via the Web to any device that can connect to the Internet. This gives Google a vastly larger addressable market than what Amazon has built up with Kindle so far.'" The price per book will be set by the publishers, Google says. Google willl turn over 45% of what they take in to the publisher and "the vast majority" of the rest to retailers.
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Google Takes On Amazon With Own E-Book Store

Comments Filter:
  • by DrivingBear (931124) on Friday October 16, 2009 @11:46AM (#29769353)
    As long as the books they sell are readable on any device they win in my book.
    • As long as the books are on a device that has a good reading experience, that is what is important to me. so basically, can I load the books on a Kindle. Anything else is totally pointless, I'm not going to read a tablet or laptop screen for hours. I obviously don't want to read a novel on a cellphone either.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Abreu (173023)

        I have been reading novels in a PalmOS device for years, it's no biggie

        In fact, having seen a current generation epaper device, I can say that, for me, a standard color LCD is still the superior reading device

        • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

          by OrangeTide (124937)

          As have I, it sucks compared to a 6" EPD. Backlight displays are a tremendous strain on the eyes compared to purely reflective displays. And the points on an E Ink device are distributed more like print than the matrix of an LCD, so I never get a moire pattern after image on my eyes after a long reading session. (yes, I doubt you believe any of this.)

          Companies are making EPD based readers and accepting the tremendous limitations of the techonlogy not because it's a gimmick but because LCDs have terrible bat

          • by WaywardGeek (1480513) on Friday October 16, 2009 @12:49PM (#29770123) Journal

            It turns out that starting probably next year some time, you get the best of both worlds [pixelqi.com]. We'll have netbooks and net tablets that pack displays equal to e-paper in sunlight, and with brilliant color.

            Personally, I translate e-books to high-speed audio (about 500 wpm), rather than reading, as my central vision is failing. I can't tell you how much I enjoy having books read to me at that speed with the old IBM ViaVoice TTS. The problem with Kindle and friends is they make it too hard or impossible for me to enjoy their books in the form I want. I have high hopes that netbooks with the new displays coupled with Googles e-book service will change the world.

            • by Abreu (173023)

              That pixelqi thing sounds be very nice. I'll keep an eye on it

            • by jfengel (409917)

              Personally, I translate e-books to high-speed audio (about 500 wpm), rather than reading,

              That's interesting. I'd like to hear more about that.

              I do some reading for the blind, and I wonder if I'm going to be replaced with a machine some day. I wouldn't have expected it to be soon. (This is volunteer work, and I wouldn't mind being replaced to free up time for something else.)

              I'm sure the machine can't quite match my facility for interpretation, but I couldn't match 500 wpm. Is it good enough for the purposes you put it to?

              • It's wonderful, but I doubt you're soon going to be replaced. The advantage of the computer generated voice (text-to-speech, or TTS), is that it's really fast. Here's a sample [billrocks.org] at around 450wpm.

                I'm a programmer by trade, and a hacker/geek by choice. The TTS engine will enable me to remain highly productive even if I can't see. There's a blind guy getting a Ph.D. at NC State in computer science who has been giving me tips. He listens at around 850wpm, which is really amazing. He is probably just as good

                • That sample was remarkably inaudible, and I'm someone who is more than happy with low quality audio and regularly down samples stuff to 32kbps.
                  • There's a very interesting correlation between reading speed and listening speed. If that was super-hard to understand for you, I'm guessing your reading speed is only average. Fast readers all seem able to understand fast speech. Apparently, a major bottleneck in reading speed is subvocalization speed (the speed you hear your voice in your own head).

                    However, you are correct. That sample is only 11KHz sample rate, and mp3 compressed. At higher listening speeds than this, I've switched to 22KHz, and unc

                    • Not at all, for me - I grasped what you wrote in about five seconds (admittedly, the details about subvocalization, sample rates etc. were skipped at first), while the first twenty seconds of the sample I heard were just gibberish. I was eventually able to discern some phrases, and could probably train myself to be able to listen to that. That would be an interesting project.

                      However, the reading speed and listening speed seem totally disconnected, as I don't get any subvocalization (unless I consciously try

                • by jfengel (409917)

                  Wow, that was remarkable. It took until about halfway through before I was getting more than a tiny fraction of it, though I can see how you'd spin up to that fast.

                  It's actually really good to know that blind listeners do handle that. My specialty is reading the chess column in the paper. Game transcripts and analyses are extremely information dense. I've never met any of the actual people who listen to it (for all I know there aren't any, though I gather people do miss it when I'm away) and so I get li

            • by macshit (157376)

              It turns out that starting probably next year some time, you get the best of both worlds [pixelqi.com]. We'll have netbooks and net tablets that pack displays equal to e-paper in sunlight, and with brilliant color.

              That page says almost nothing about what they're actually doing... Does the "pixelqi" address any problems except the reflection-in-sunlight/backlight problem?

              The grandparent's complaint was as much about the annoyingly obvious artifacts of LCD color displays when viewing detailed high-contrast material (like text) at close-distance with relatively low-resolution, as it was about backlighting vs. reflective displays.

          • by Abreu (173023)

            Problem with EInk displays (at least current generation ones) is that contrast is very bad.

            Even though the purely reflective screen is a good step, the fact that you are reading grey text on light-grey background is a killer for the eyes

            • Problem with EInk displays (at least current generation ones) is that contrast is very bad.

              Even though the purely reflective screen is a good step, the fact that you are reading grey text on light-grey background is a killer for the eyes

              The contrast on the Kindle (I haven't tried any other e-paper device) isn't perfect, by any means, but it's still a substantially better experience than reading on a back-lit device, by a wide margin. I've read on Palm handhelds from the Palm Pilot II to as recently as the Centro (a total of 5 or so models I've owned, over the years) and the experience on a back-lit screen (particularly color) is nicer, aesthetically, for short reading, and certainly for maps (since epaper devices don't currently do color

          • by ajs (35943)

            LCDs have terrible battery life

            True, that.

            and are just painful to read.

            Now you've made a leap, there.

            My mind boggles that you think a color LCD is superior, the color elements are pretty easy to see on a typical handheld sized LCD

            I'm sure you're going to explain why I care. I grew up on the Tandy Color Computer with pixels the size of your head. If I wanted photo-realism, I'd go for a walk. When I want to read, being able to see pixels isn't a concern.

            Maybe I'm just biased, having made ebook readers for years now.

            Aha! Now, it all becomes clear. I was wondering how someone became so hyper-senstitive to every feature of their reading medium, and then you explained it all. Yes, I have known people who were in the book printing world who couldn't read books

        • I disagree. I read books on my Kindle and my iPhone when I'm out and about and it's a 10x better on the Kindle. I couldn't read only on my iPhone. I'd rather just own the book if that were the case but the Kindle is a great reading experience. The iPhone is an acceptable short-term solution when I'm sitting and waiting on an appointment.
      • by ajs (35943)

        I obviously don't want to read a novel on a cellphone either.

        I'm not sure why that's obvious. My cell phone is frequently used to real books from either Kindle (iPhone app) or Google (Google Books free version, which is available today). I find it quite handy for reading while commuting (I walk or take the bus) and before bed. It's not an ideal size, but I can read with it just fine, and I find the ease of carrying around the phone beats out the form-factor in terms of overall experience.

      • by MobyDisk (75490)

        That's find until you have to replace your kindle one day, and you have to buy your books again.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by eldavojohn (898314) *

      As long as the books they sell are readable on any device they win in my book.

      From the article:

      The books bought from Google, and its partners, would be accessible on any gadget that has a Web browser, including smartphones, netbooks and personal computers and laptops. A book would be accessible offline after the first time it was accessed.

      I believe the Kindle has an experimental web browser ... although why pay the premium if Google can offer what Amazon offers? Being a netbook user (and enjoying 7 hours of battery life) I'm very interested in this. My netbook was maybe $75 more than the Kindle.

      • by MBGMorden (803437) on Friday October 16, 2009 @12:14PM (#29769707)

        The web browser thing makes sense to me given Google's app layout so far. I doubt you'll be buying a file at all. Instead, you'll probably get another tab on your Google area (akin to Documents, Photos, Reader, etc there are there now), and once you purchase access to a book it'll get tied to your account where you can read it online.

        There's still some degree of vendor locking in that all your books would be on their servers, but at least there's no device lock-in.

        I've certainly used a variety of devices to read ebooks though. I read The Wizard of Oz (admittedly a short book) on my iPod Touch because it was in a collection of public domain books I bought off the app store for $0.99.

        I've read several books on my desktop computer at work, simply because when you have nothing to do, looking at PDF's still looks like you're working. My boss thinks I'm diligently reading something technical while in reality I'm reading "The Time Machine" or some other sci-fi novel :).

        • Insightful post, which scared the heck out of me. However, TFA clearly indicates that any browser will do, and you'll be able to read off-line. Unless they're developing a custom plug-in for every browser everywhere that encrypts data on your disk, it's probably just plain old HTML. I suspect you'll be able to simply use file/save to save your book. However, you could be right.

          The hard sell here is for Google to convince book publishers that it's OK to sell their books without DRM. It's one of those th

          • Insightful post, which scared the heck out of me. However, TFA clearly indicates that any browser will do, and you'll be able to read off-line. Unless they're developing a custom plug-in for every browser everywhere that encrypts data on your disk, it's probably just plain old HTML. I suspect you'll be able to simply use file/save to save your book. However, you could be right.

            FYI Google Gears would already facilitate all of this, and already works in all the major browsers (and is, of course, built into Chrome).

      • by jank1887 (815982)

        "any gadget that has a Web browser"

        hmmm... my LG VX8350 has opera mini... War and Peace may lead to some tired scrolly-thumbs.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Seumas (6865)

        As soon as a netbook can fit in my hand and use an e-ink screen, I might be all over that. In the meantime, I really don't want to spend even more hours staring at a big bright back-lit computer screen.

        Also, google trying to *add* middemen to the process by involving retailers seems a bit odd, to me. How about google and I cut them out and I just buy it at a discount? I mean, you're not selling a physical service here -- so what are they a "wholesaler" of? Bits?

    • The price matters (Score:5, Interesting)

      by dtzitz (937838) on Friday October 16, 2009 @11:51AM (#29769423)
      What they charge per book matters. I am not sure how many people you are going to get to buy an e-book for the same price that they could pick up a physical copy at their local book store or less if they bought it used on amazon. I am going to hold judgment until I see some prices.
      • I am not sure how many people you are going to get to buy an e-book for the same price that they could pick up a physical copy at their local book store or less if they bought it used on amazon.

        Amazon sells the ebooks for almost the same price as the physical copy, and appear to be very successful with it. The instant download and convenience is important enough for people to justify the high price. I don't think ebooks were ever about being cheaper. Ebooks are about convenience for the customer, and for the seller it means they don't have to maintain inventories and can have every book in stock all the time. Ebooks could possibly end the problem of out-of-print books, and it will only happen if t

        • See,

          I just have a hard time paying the same price (or near it) for something that costs them less to produce. And of course, the DRM issue just makes it even harder for me to purchase.
        • by blueZ3 (744446)

          This is why I personally don't "rent" anything. I don't "rent" music and I won't "rent" books, either. I do buy both (electronic copies of both books and music) but I'm not paying for something with DRM where when the distributor goes out of business I'm hosed. And I generally won't pay the physical media price for something that I'm only getting an electronic copy of.

          Google and Amazon can get back to me when they offer DRM-less books, readable on the device of my choice, able to be backed up by me to a loc

          • by smoker2 (750216)
            I've been a customer of eReader.com [ereader.com] since 2004. Back then I had a Palm device and eReader sold .pdb ebooks.
            I am still using those books, they are still accessible, I have copies of books on my server, my phone and my (xp)desktop. They don't have the capability of deleting my copies, or removing them remotely. The only encryption used is my own credit card number, which I am unlikely to share on TPB, and while I know of no cracks, I really wouldn't be interested anyway. So what if I can't copy the text dire
      • by rossdee (243626)

        Baen sells individual books for $5 to $6 each, when the cheapest paperbacks today are $7.99 plus tax.

        • Cheapest paperbacks are $8 plus tax? Maybe new for "hot" new books, but I know I've gotten paperbacks (not used) for less than $5, and used paperbacks for $0.99.
          • by Zerth (26112)

            Cheapest paperbacks are $8 plus tax? Maybe new for "hot" new books, but I know I've gotten paperbacks (not used) for less than $5, and used paperbacks for $0.99.

            New paperbacks for less than $5? Most of us don't read romance novels, sorry.

        • by Lehk228 (705449)
          that's because they are pretty cool dudes and not really afraid of anything. they also offer a bunch of stuff for free in the Baen free library.
      • by Zerth (26112)

        Yah, I thought the kindle/ebook hardware was rather lame until I noticed how much paperbacks are lately. Getting books still in hardback for ~15% over paperback(or cheaper, for trade size), it didn't seem so bad.

        There are a few authors I might always buy in hardback, but if paperback prices ever go over ebook prices, I'd probably never going to buy another paperback. But then I'm the kind that rarely sells back a book.

        PS, why do they use trade size for books? I get why they do it for advance copies, sinc

      • by Chyeld (713439)

        Though I can't find the article from work, it interested me last night while I was reading up on Google Editions that one of the articles indicated that there would be the option to convert your book into a paperback at some undetermined price.

        For me, that sounds like the best of both worlds.

      • by Thaelon (250687)

        I am not sure how many people you are going to get to buy an e-book for the same price that they could pick up a physical copy at their local book store

        I'm at least one.

        I'd rather have ebooks to replace my huge, difficult to move, packed away in boxes, hard to find what I want library with a machine searchable list so small I can carry the entire library on my iPhone or N810 anywhere I go. If I could trade in all the books in my library for digital editions readable in Stanza, I'd do it today and pay to ha

  • by TheGratefulNet (143330) on Friday October 16, 2009 @11:47AM (#29769361)

    and what file format are they? they say 'browser based'. does that include lynx?

    how OPEN is this, really? anyone know?

    • DRM sux (Score:3, Funny)

      by OrangeTide (124937)

      At least upgrade to Mosaic [floodgap.com]. I'm just disappointed that Google isn't available on Gopher [floodgap.com], and I can read ebooks just fine as plain text, this is how we've been doing it for many many years and the format Project Gutenberg started out using. Some people even host their blogs [quux.org] on gopher.

      • by jank1887 (815982)

        I'm interested, please show me what the terminal screen version of Mosaic is like.

      • mosaic doesn't run on text-based terms, does it?

        seriously - lynx compat is a useful thing for when you don't NEED graphics. a lot of books would read just fine even if the images were omitted.

        the thing about lynx compat means your browser usually can be very lightweight, so even if you like graphics, you won't be bogged down with a lot of 'scripty' slowdowns. I hate scripty things. for book content, push static data to me and don't expect me to *compute* a damned thing.

    • by durrr (1316311)
      Probably very open, DRM on ebooks allowed on ordinary computers is entirely pointless, optic character recognition on screen captures would render any DRM system dead on arrival. Google should know this.
      • by Shagg (99693)

        Yes, DRM on eBooks is pointless. That doesn't stop them from doing it anyway. Most copyrighted commercial eBooks have DRM (and most of them have already been broken).

      • Most DRM is pointless. The false positives annoy genuine users, and the hardcore commercial pirates find a hack or a workaround in about 15 minutes.
    • by Chyeld (713439)

      Why not take a peek [google.com] and answer your questions directly.

    • As long as it open enough to be used on any system (within reason) that's all that matters. Supporting Lynx is unnecessary.
    • by selven (1556643)

      Browser-based, likely as in "you can only access it from your Google account, no downloads".

  • by jhfry (829244) on Friday October 16, 2009 @11:49AM (#29769401)

    I don't understand why they would be paying "the vast majority" (of whats left after paying the publisher) to retailers?

    I haven't read the article yet, but either the summary is way off, misleading, or it just doesn't make sense!

    • by geekoid (135745)

      Because the retailers need to make money or they won't offer the books?

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by jhfry (829244)

        Why do they need retailers at all? If they are paying the publisher anyway... why not just sell direct and give a larger cut to the publisher. I guess what I want to know is, what role does the retailer play here? It would by like going to iTunes to buy a song, and have to choose which retailer is going to get credit for the sale. It's a download, not a TV, so Amazons retailer model doesn't make sense here, people will simply always buy from the cheapest source and that source will be the one who only t

        • Because Google doesn't do retailing. It's not part of the business.

          There is good reason for this. Google does what it does by being usable by everyone -- in this case, as a kind of wholesaler. If they get into retailing, now they are competing against others directly in the retail market -- which means those competitors won't use Google as their wholesaler.

          It's better for Google if they are the wholesaler for as many retailers as possible, instead of being wholesaler & retailer only for themselves.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      I haven't read the article yet, but either the summary is way off, misleading, or it just doesn't make sense!

      I guess TFS could be considered misleading if you believed that it was claiming to completely explain Google's plan. Or maybe, TFS was just incomplete (as summaries tend to be). From TFA:

      "Google Editions allows retail partners to sell their books, especially those who haven't invested in a digital platform," he said. "We expect the majority (of customers) will go to retail partners not to Google. We are a wholesaler, a book distributor."

      • by jhfry (829244)

        I did read the article... and I am still baffled.

        This is an electronic download, presumably from Google's servers. Google will pay the publisher, as will the retailer. With multiple retailers selling the exact same digital download, competition will drive the price down to $0.01 over what the retailer pays the publisher... so why bother with a retailer at all. In fact if google does really open with this model, I will start a company that will simply sell thousands of books for 1 cent over what the publi

        • But digital downloads eliminate everything but price.

          If this was the case then you wouldn't have dozens (hundreds?) of eBook retailers selling public domain works (i.e. repackaged Project Gutenberg titles) in an electronic format. There's something to be said for the power of advertising and the ignorance of consumers.

    • by PaintyThePirate (682047) on Friday October 16, 2009 @12:22PM (#29769797) Homepage
      I was confused too. The summary is missing this key piece of information:

      "Google Editions allows retail partners to sell their books, especially those who haven't invested in a digital platform," he said. "We expect the majority (of customers) will go to retail partners not to Google. We are a wholesaler, a book distributor."

      • by jhfry (829244)

        Good now its clear as mud.

        Google will digitize and host the books and sell that service to retailers who will then sell the downloads.

        Essentially competition will drive the price to $0.01 over what Google's hosting costs. I will setup a website, selling every book google will let me, for exactly $0.01 over what Google is charging me for thier services.... retailers won't stand a chance!

        Google is competing with retailers, even if they use this model they will essentially eliminate the ability for retailers

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Chyeld (713439)

      Google isn't creating a bookstore, they are creating a backend for bookstores to use.

      In otherwords they hope to have you walk into a Barnes & Noble, Waldenbooks, or whatever brick and motar stores are still out there in the era of Amazon.com, and/or visit these company's websites, and purchase a "Google Editions" version of the book as opposed to having their own dedicated webfront like Amazon does.

      Man the above sentence is tourtured grammer, but I can't make it come out any better.

      • by jhfry (829244)

        This is actually the most reasonable response I have heard to my question. So the way you understand it is that Google will not have a website to visit at all... they will just digitize and host the books, letting the retailers be responsible for marketing and sales.

        Of course I will still open a web storefront that sells the books for $0.01 over whatever I would pay google to host the download. And I would ask google to let me sell their entire catalog of books. I may even ask google to host my site for m

        • by Chyeld (713439)

          The problem you'll run into with that setup is it seems the publishers set the price tag (per this and most of the other articles I've read about Google Editions so far). So your virtual web front will have the same prices as the rest of Googles partners, preventing you from driving traffic to your store simply by undercutting everyone.

          This is good and bad. It's good because it means that someone in theory can setup a 'niche' web site and promote books that fit that niche for a low cost (due to presumably l

  • by e**(i pi)-1 (462311) on Friday October 16, 2009 @11:51AM (#29769417) Homepage Journal
    obvious questions: if it is browser based, can one read the book without being online? Can one download the book temporarily or for good? Are records kept from where and how long a reader reads a book and what kind of books are read? Will this be tied to your online profile and get you reader specific ads?
    • by eldavojohn (898314) * <[moc.liamg] [ta] [nhojovadle]> on Friday October 16, 2009 @11:58AM (#29769531) Journal

      obvious questions: if it is browser based, can one read the book without being online? Can one download the book temporarily or for good? Are records kept from where and how long a reader reads a book and what kind of books are read? Will this be tied to your online profile and get you reader specific ads?

      From the article:

      The books bought from Google, and its partners, would be accessible on any gadget that has a Web browser, including smartphones, netbooks and personal computers and laptops. A book would be accessible offline after the first time it was accessed.

      There's an awful lot of questions and assumptions being asked about this device that are answered quite clearly in the article. I don't think anything about 'reader ads' are ads while reading was included in this. You'd be paying money for these books (just like with Amazon's Kindle), no ad supported revenue.

      • This may be a big use for Google Gears. Perhaps Gears was created to support Google's book sales and online apps, and then Chrome was created to push other browsers towards Gears compatibility. You can't accuse Google of thinking small.

        If the books are really just displayed in the browser as text, there will probably be tools developed by hackers to extract the contents to a text file. I wonder if Google will fight this or just let it happen?

        • That was my thought, too. This seems like the "perfect" use for Google Gears. Well, if you're Google. I'd rather be able to download it...
    • A book would be accessible offline after the first time it was accessed.

      • by JSBiff (87824)

        If I had to guess, I would guess that Google is possibly going to leverage the "Google Gears" tech for this (although, that might mean that some cell phones wouldn't be compatible, so perhaps not). Or, maybe they will just offer you a pdf or html download? Time will tell.

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by JustNiz (692889)

        Yeah I read that too, but am still concerned why would you have to access it the first time via a browser? This might indicate that you're not really able to download a full copy as a single (non-DRM'd) file that you could put on another (browserless) e-book reader. Rather that you have to rely on some Google-supplied plugin to read an encrypted mess from your browser cache.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Shagg (99693)

      Usually, it means the eBook store is browser based. You go online, buy, and download the eBook via your browser. After that you can open and read the file on any device that supports the format (generally with DRM). They probably know what books you've bought from them since it's tied to your account, but I don't think they're going to be monitoring where or how long you read a particular eBook for. I don't see how they could, since they don't control the devices.

  • Out of print. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by JustNiz (692889) on Friday October 16, 2009 @12:16PM (#29769727)

    I like the fact that Google are focussing on out-of-print books.
    It boggles my mind why Google scanning out-of-print books is kicking up a shit storm with book publishers though. I mean if the books are so marketable why are they out-of-print in the first place?
    Also, where else would I go to get an out-of-print book? perhaps a used book store but the publishers dont get a cut of that either but don't seem to mind those. At least with Google selling on their behalf they could arrange some kickback.

    • by Chyeld (713439)

      People are reactionary, and despite our best intentions, most of us are still luddites outside of our 'natural' habitat.

      One might as well ask why people still believe cellphones will cause a second head to grow out of your neck, food irradiated for sterilization will give you super powers, and high voltage lines cause autism.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      It boggles my mind why Google scanning out-of-print books is kicking up a shit storm with book publishers though. I mean if the books are so marketable why are they out-of-print in the first place?

      Well the publisher's positions are not necessarily totally irrational. They are worried that if people have easy access to all these out-of-print books, they will purchase fewer new titles. Even though there isn't enough profit to be made by publishing many of these individual titles, the aggregate of all out-of-print books may capture enough "mindshare" to cut into the interest in books that are in print.

      Now, I don't think this is a great argument. It basically relies on copyright and old-style ineffici

      • by DrCode (95839)

        There might be some truth to the publishers' worries. I'm currently reading one of Dickens books, and, well, it's a bit long and doesn't move very fast. So I'm taking months to read it. And during this time, I'm not buying anything else.

    • by PReDiToR (687141)
      Remember when some whacko read Lord of The Rings and decided to turn it into a movie with loads of bits missing, and tons of people went and bought the book to see what Holywood [sic] wouldn't show them?

      Sometimes reprinting is very good business. And no, LoTR wasn't an out of print book, but for the purposes of this post it serves as a good enough example if you can imagine it had been.
  • by Bigbutt (65939) on Friday October 16, 2009 @12:28PM (#29769879) Homepage Journal

    I actually like O'Reilly's Safari site for my eBooks. It's accessible to my iPhone as well as my various systems. As a consultant, it works better than dragging books around and the books are available for download. It's also very readable as each chapter is a single "page" vs many reference books I have are multi-column.

    Having a similar Google site where the books are available whereever I am assuming 'net access plus it's off-line so I can read it when I'm out of range sounds a lot better than the Kindle at least for my purposes.

    [John]

  • Keeping in mind that all back-lit displays suck, can we please have a reader that doesn't suck?

    I mean other than the Kindle.

  • by theurge14 (820596) on Friday October 16, 2009 @01:34PM (#29770681)

    The summary mentioned Google will be going up against Kindle owners but didn't mention the Kindle app for iPhone.

    As of August 31 2009 the Kindle app for the iPhone was the 4th most popular app in the App Store [ireaderreview.com], with estimates of 3 million Kindle for iPhone users out there.

    Google will be going against this as well as Stanza and the B&N ebook readers. Apparently there's a rather large market for ebooks on the iPhone/iPod touch.

  • In the same way Apple clarified the emusic market with the iTune store, it might be able to clean up the conflicted ebook market too. Before iTune priracy was the norm and content was scattered with uneven qaulity.

    Wired had an article today that Apple was changing it online store models to facilitate the sale of content on iPod/iTouch devices. And its ebook hardware may be a giant iTouch/iTablet in the near future.

Our informal mission is to improve the love life of operators worldwide. -- Peter Behrendt, president of Exabyte

Working...