The announcement that Google is going into the electronic book vending business is surprising absolutely no one. Nor, as Information Week notes here, is it making already nervous authors and publishers feel any better about the company’s controversial Book Search Settlement.
Google didn’t immediately respond to questions about whether it would sell e-books in an open or protected format. The company already offers over 1.5 million public domain books for free to users of Android mobile phones, Apple’s iPhone, and the Internet. It also allows people to search through millions more books sold online and provides links to online stores selling those books.Meanwhile, Amazon’s latest electronic reader, the Kindle DX, will be available later this month. The new larger format is meant to support electronic versions of magazines and newspapers. However, at $489. US, the new larger price tag might prove to be the most interesting feature on the latest model. Will consumers go for it? With interest in and adoption of electronic book technologies at an all-time high, I’m betting the answer will be in the affirmative.
Once Google starts selling e-books directly, Amazon may have to add a caveat to its claim that it “offers Earth's Biggest Selection.”
Labels: electronic books