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Google nearly ready to challenge Apple, Amazon with e-bookstore

post #1 of 74
Thread Starter 
Google Editions, the search giant's entry into the e-book market, is in the "final stages," and is set to debut by the end of the year, posing a threat to Apple's new iBookstore, according to a new report.

Google Editions was first announced in May with a slated release for late June or July. After several delays, the e-bookstore should arrive soon, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Google product management director Scott Dougall told the Journal that Google Editions is set to launch in the U.S. by the "end of the month and internationally in the first quarter of next year."

Independent booksellers have received contracts in recent weeks, and several publishers have been exchanging files with Google, indicating the store is close to launch, the report noted.

Google hopes to shakes things up with a more open model than its competitors, namely Apple and Amazon. With Google Editions, users' purchases will be tied to their Google accounts and will be accessible on "most devices with a Web browser." By comparison, Apple's iBooks store is currently only available on the iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch.

Beyond just the tablet and e-reader market, Google hopes to reach "all Internet users" through a revenue sharing program with other websites and booksellers.

"Google is going to turn every Internet space that talks about a book into a place where you can buy that book," Dominique Raccah, publisher and owner of Sourcebooks Inc, told the Journal. "The Google model is going to drive a lot of sales. We think they could get 20% of the e-book market very fast."

For its part, Apple announced in June that it had achieved a 22 percent share of the e-book market by selling more than 5 million digital books in just over two months.

According to the Journal's report, Google has already signed deals with "many major book publishers" and is expected to have hundreds of thousands of titles available for purchase, and "millions more for free" shortly after launch.

The 6-month delay may have cost Google though, as Apple and Amazon have had extra time to solidify their places in the market. A recent survey by Changewave research showed that Apple's iPad is gaining steadily on Amazon's Kindle in the e-reader market. Apple doubled its market share from 16 percent in August to 32 percent in November, while Amazon's share dropped from 62 percent to 47 percent over the same period.

Forrester Research predicts that more than 15 million e-readers and tablets will be sold in 2010, compared to an estimated 2.8 million e-readers in 2009. If the 15 million number is to believed, Apple will take the lion's share of the market, as it had sold over 7 million iPads by the end of September.

However, HarperCollins Publishers CEO Brian Murray thinks Google's lack of an e-reader could give it a "competitive advantage." As more mobile reading devices hit the market, Google Editions could benefit because it will be the "least dependent on specific devices."

On the other hand, Michael Edwards, chief executive of Borders Group Inc.'s bookselling unit, is skeptical about Google's place in the e-book market. "I don't see the advantage in pushing their content, especially since it may be small in terms of total revenue," he said.
post #2 of 74
So, all those illegally scanned books are finally gonna pay off for Google...

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post #3 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


According to the Journal's report, Google has already signed deals with "many major book publishers" and is expected to have hundreds of thousands of titles available for purchase, and "millions more for free" shortly after launch.


"millions more for free"

Free books with ads anyone?
post #4 of 74
Serious reading of digital books is for eReaders and Tablets. More comfortable and almost as natural as reading a hard copy book than reading on a browser of a desktop or laptop screen.
post #5 of 74
Fail. Google won't be getting any more info from me than it already does. No way am I logging in for this.
post #6 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by mgl323 View Post

"millions more for free"

Free books with ads anyone?

I think they will all have ads since none of the ebooks, free or purchased, will be stored locally.

Gotta love the cloud, just an excuse for more and more companies to use the bandwidth I pay for to shove more ads in my face.
post #7 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wurm5150 View Post

Serious reading of digital books is for eReaders and Tablets. More comfortable and almost as natural as reading a hard copy book than reading on a browser of a desktop or laptop screen.

You can read it on iPhone or iPad using Safari but I see where you're coming from.

EDIT: I think Google got tbeir strategy right. Convenience will win. Average user will not care. Apple & Amazon should watch out.
post #8 of 74
Google is trying to get into everything in this world. I totally hate to use anything that is Google. They are trying to push Web base system, where everything is base on the Browser. I think that is very dumb.
I much prefer the iPad experience of reading on a tablet & syncing all my book in one place with a backup copy in iTunes.
post #9 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by matrix07 View Post

You can read it on iPhone or iPad using Safari but I see where you're coming from.

EDIT: I think Google got tbeir strategy right. Convenience will win. Average user will not care. Apple & Amazon should watch out.

In 6 months let's revisit this fantasy.
post #10 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by matrix07 View Post

You can read it on iPhone or iPad using Safari but I see where you're coming from.

EDIT: I think Google got tbeir strategy right. Convenience will win. Average user will not care. Apple & Amazon should watch out.

So no internet connection no book?

How is that going to work when I go on holiday with my WiFi iPad and I have no internet connection (or a very expensive one). What is the point of a book reader that needs to be connected to the internet, there is no customer benefit, just a benefit to Google to feed you ads. Fail!

Who wants to use up 3G data allowances reading books on their phone?
post #11 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post

So, all those illegally scanned books are finally gonna pay off for Google...

What's funny is I edit those books and they don't pay me squat!! I want a pay raise google if you succeed (I work in the dept that scans and edits these books lol) plus not to mention it will prob be available soon as I've been lumped into a expedited group and we've been told that the books are "high priority" bs pay me more before I have to work harder for my 10$ an hour

You should see the scanning crew with the OCR equipment! Looks like a sweat shop almost
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post #12 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by mgl323 View Post

"millions more for free"

Free books with ads anyone?

Free with ads will ALWAYS win. Look at spotify, they are suffering because they have a stupidly huge amount of users on the free with ads version that won't pay a subscription to get rid of the ads, even though you get more features such as offline mode and mobile syncing.

Would you pay for a search engine so that you didn't have to face the ads?

Google's ads are the least intrusive ads on your content in the history of advertising. The ads are even targeted at what you might like.

Free with ads is the most successful business model if you want everyone to use or at least try your product.
post #13 of 74
E-Books is a bag of hurt
post #14 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by nvidia2008 View Post

E-Books is a bag of hurt

Well they don't hurt as much as if I'd have to carry all my eBooks I keep on my iPad as physical copies around. Just a thought.
post #15 of 74
Spot the obvious loser here:

Amazon kindle store, available on all platforms.

Apple iBooks store, available on iOS devices.

Google Editions, available on anything with a web browser.

The sad thing is apple are unlikely to expand to other platforms.
post #16 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by tjw View Post

Spot the obvious loser here:

Amazon kindle store, available on all platforms.

Apple iBooks store, available on iOS devices.

Google Editions, available on anything with a web browser.

The sad thing is apple are unlikely to expand to other platforms.

Available on how many million iOS devices?
post #17 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by tjw
Spot the obvious loser here:

Amazon kindle store, available on all platforms.

Apple iBooks store, available on iOS devices.

Google Editions, available on anything with a web browser.

The problem with iBooks is not the number of devices it runs on, it is the pathetic selection of books in the store.
post #18 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wonder View Post

Available on how many million iOS devices?

Many, many millions less than all the devices on every platform put together and all devices with a web browser.
post #19 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by rtrader88 View Post

Google is trying to get into everything in this world. I totally hate to use anything that is Google. They are trying to push Web base system, where everything is base on the Browser. I think that is very dumb.
I much prefer the iPad experience of reading on a tablet & syncing all my book in one place with a backup copy in iTunes.

Yeah, what a dumb idea that users can have access to what they need from anywhere in the world. Who needs it? /sarcasm
And you can still have an iPad experience after Google will publish an App for its book store.... ;p
post #20 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by rtrader88 View Post

Google is trying to get into everything in this world. I totally hate to use anything that is Google. They are trying to push Web base system, where everything is base on the Browser. I think that is very dumb.
I much prefer the iPad experience of reading on a tablet & syncing all my book in one place with a backup copy in iTunes.

OK dinosaur
post #21 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rabbit_Coach View Post

Well they don't hurt as much as if I'd have to carry all my eBooks I keep on my iPad as physical copies around. Just a thought.



Don't take me too seriously. I like my iPad 32GB WiFi 3G. But the only thing I read is the Zinio samples and I've only bought one or two simple iPad/iPhone "tips" books from the iBookStore. I don't watch much movies nowadays, PC gaming has enough good, cinematic storylines going for it (Starcraft 2, Crysis Warhead, Mass Effect 2 are the notable recent completions).

BTW I don't know what the hold up is but these publishers are idiots if they continue to ignore the iBookStore for whatever reason (they'll probably blame Apple as usual).

The education market is primed to explode with books on iPad. Whether it will come to full fruition, we shall see... Many, many more millions of iPads to be made and sold in 2011. Publishers will either be on-board with a better selection, or maybe they'll be off to suckle at the teat of Google only to realise they're the ones being bled dry hmm?

BTW these idiotic publishers still have some very, very ridiculous geographic restrictions on iBookStore. I've said it before, PEOPLE ARE ALREADY READING LESS AND NOT BUYING YOUR PHYSICAL BOOK... AND YOU DON'T WANT TO SELL IT MORE WIDELY AROUND THE WORLD?

My sister-in-law was working with Penguin etc. in the UK and in mid-2008 they were trying to do a big e-Book push with Sony's e-Readers and what not. Talk about not having a clue. To be fair, the iPad was nowhere to be seen at the time, it only existed as sparkles of interweb thistles. This kind of things with Penguin UK are some of the reason the country's screwed... Among many other things.
post #22 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by tjw View Post

OK dinosaur

That's right dude... I'd rather be pwning n00bs than this "reading" stuff.

On a side note the California government's recent initiative, "Call of Duty: Modern Literature"
was an abject failure.

post #23 of 74
I'm nearly ready to create a perpetual motion machine...

Tell me when it happens.
post #24 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by matrix07 View Post

You can read it on iPhone or iPad using Safari but I see where you're coming from.

EDIT: I think Google got tbeir strategy right. Convenience will win. Average user will not care. Apple & Amazon should watch out.

Google could potentially include books in searches and allow users to buy the books or even pay a smaller amount for limited access to books. If I'm reading up on, say, the 1980 election, I might be willing to pay $1.49 to read a chapter of a campaign aide's memoir even if I don't want to pay for or read the whole book.

I love iBooks, but an open system has a lot more possibilities than a closed one like iBooks that is only available on my Apple devices.
post #25 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wonder View Post

So no internet connection no book?

How is that going to work when I go on holiday with my WiFi iPad and I have no internet connection (or a very expensive one). What is the point of a book reader that needs to be connected to the internet, there is no customer benefit, just a benefit to Google to feed you ads. Fail!

Who wants to use up 3G data allowances reading books on their phone?

I'm sure extensions like Read It Later will take care of that.
post #26 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by Porchland View Post

Google could potentially include books in searches and allow users to buy the books or even pay a smaller amount for limited access to books. If I'm reading up on, say, the 1980 election, I might be willing to pay $1.49 to read a chapter of a campaign aide's memoir even if I don't want to pay for or read the whole book.

I love iBooks, but an open system has a lot more possibilities than a closed one like iBooks that is only available on my Apple devices.

Yeah, so many possibilities there. I'm still using iBook mainly though. I'm not a fast reader anyway.
post #27 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by nvidia2008 View Post

That's right dude... I'd rather be pwning n00bs than this "reading" stuff.

On a side note the California government's recent initiative, "Call of Duty: Modern Literature"
was an abject failure.


Ha. I was referring to the user I quoted and their idea that cloud computing, apps based in the browser is a 'dumb thing'. He prefers to sync all his stuff (via a cable I expect) with iTunes.

Anyone that can't see the benefit of a cloud computing future is a dinosaur.
post #28 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Google Editions, the search giant's entry into the e-book market, is in the "final stages," and is set to debut by the end of the year, posing a threat to Apple's new iBookstore, according to a new report.

This will only pose a threat to iBook Store if it is available to iOS devices with the same simplicity and ease of purchase.

Failing that, it will be no threat to iBooks at all.
post #29 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by rtrader88 View Post

Google is trying to get into everything in this world. I totally hate to use anything that is Google. They are trying to push Web base system, where everything is base on the Browser. I think that is very dumb.
I much prefer the iPad experience of reading on a tablet & syncing all my book in one place with a backup copy in iTunes.

yes, google thought the browser was the way and i thought so too until Jobs gave new life to the old app idea with the iphone and app store.
and i always turn my wifi off to conserve battery when i am doing a lot of reading so this browser crap won't sell me. will stick with amazon kindle reader....
post #30 of 74
Who goes back to their computer to read the book they purchased on the iPad?

Google is hoping their FUD against apple being "closed" is going to pay off. "Oh Noes you can't read your book on XXX obscure device!" Like users actually care about that?
post #31 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by enjourni View Post

Who goes back to their computer to read the book they purchased on the iPad?

Google is hoping their FUD against apple being "closed" is going to pay off. "Oh Noes you can't read your book on XXX obscure device!" Like users actually care about that?

i do. i read technical books on my desktop at work and i move from ipad, to windows to mac to linux and use kindle reader for all of them.
post #32 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by matrix07 View Post

EDIT: I think Google got tbeir strategy right. Convenience will win. Average user will not care. Apple & Amazon should watch out.

Apple is the loser here. Unless Apple comes out with their own dedicated 7" e-reader, only iPad users will buy iBooks. You can only read an iBook on an iPhone or iPad- what good is that? Amazon still has all the platforms covered and at a cheaper price. Even Barnes and Noble followed Amazon's model. And remember Amazon had their app out loong before iPad was announced. As an iPhone user I can buy a Kindle book and read it on my iPhone Mac- no problem.
post #33 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by nvidia2008 View Post



Don't take me too seriously. I like my iPad 32GB WiFi 3G. But the only thing I read is the Zinio samples and I've only bought one or two simple iPad/iPhone "tips" books from the iBookStore. I don't watch much movies nowadays, PC gaming has enough good, cinematic storylines going for it (Starcraft 2, Crysis Warhead, Mass Effect 2 are the notable recent completions).

BTW I don't know what the hold up is but these publishers are idiots if they continue to ignore the iBookStore for whatever reason (they'll probably blame Apple as usual).

The education market is primed to explode with books on iPad. Whether it will come to full fruition, we shall see... Many, many more millions of iPads to be made and sold in 2011. Publishers will either be on-board with a better selection, or maybe they'll be off to suckle at the teat of Google only to realise they're the ones being bled dry hmm?

BTW these idiotic publishers still have some very, very ridiculous geographic restrictions on iBookStore. I've said it before, PEOPLE ARE ALREADY READING LESS AND NOT BUYING YOUR PHYSICAL BOOK... AND YOU DON'T WANT TO SELL IT MORE WIDELY AROUND THE WORLD?

My sister-in-law was working with Penguin etc. in the UK and in mid-2008 they were trying to do a big e-Book push with Sony's e-Readers and what not. Talk about not having a clue. To be fair, the iPad was nowhere to be seen at the time, it only existed as sparkles of interweb thistles. This kind of things with Penguin UK are some of the reason the country's screwed... Among many other things.

I can sympathize with you about "idiotic publishers" in switzerland we still get only the Gutenberg collection for the iBook application. So to read eBooks I have to use the Kindle app which I find is not quite as nice as the iBook app. I really hope, that apple may achieve deals with many publishers.
post #34 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by tjw View Post

Spot the obvious loser here:

Amazon kindle store, available on all platforms.

Apple iBooks store, available on iOS devices.

Google Editions, available on anything with a web browser.

The sad thing is apple are unlikely to expand to other platforms.

LOL!

It still amazes me that some people still don't get it. Apple is a hardware company. The software and stores are there to help sell their hardware.

So, let's look at your example from another angle.

Spot the obvious loser here:

Amazon kindle, can only read books from Amazon bookstore.

Apple iPad can read books from Amazon, B&N, Borders, iBookstore, and soon Google Editions.

Google doesn't sell hardware, but will presumably make money from sells of Android, which can read books from Amazon, B&N, Borders, and Google Editions.

The sad thing is that Amazon is unlikely to expand the Kindle to read books from other stores.

See how narrow minded and just flat out wrong that is?

Sure Amazon wants the Kindle to do well, but if it doesn't, it is no big deal because they are primarily a retailer who makes their money from sales of books, not hardware. Sure Apple wants the iBookstore to do well but if it doesn't, it is not big deal because they are primarily a hardware company who makes their money from sales of hardware, not eBooks.

As for Google Editions, it is a little too early for its own good. Sure, it would work fine while I am sitting at home. However, how about when I am on a four hour flight? Or how well will it work when I don't have 3G and no hot spot access at a restaurant? The majority of people still do not have ubiquitous access to the internet at all times, thus, there will be a strong desire for locally stored books to read. Perhaps in another decade or two the total cloud model will work out, but that isn't today or even tomorrow.

Besides, everyone seems to be overlooking the biggest monkey wrench in any eBook scheme the evil publishing houses. Just how on board are they to Google's plans? How many big publishing houses and which ones have signed up? These details seem to be conspicuously lacking at this time. To me this just sounds like another Google TV, where before its release everyone was touting that it was going to be a huge game changer, but once released the networks neutered it where it stood by taking away the content.

I wouldn't count your chickens before they are hatched with Google. They fail more often than they succeed with stuff other than search.
post #35 of 74
This isn't off topic IMHO as it is as much about Google's expansion of services as it is a about specifics:

It is about time Apple moved again into some of Google's territory (iAds being the first I can think of). I wonder if Apple is considering its own Apple Maps any time soon? They purchased a couple of companies that were involved in this a while back. I suspect Search isn't something Apple would want to get into but I may be wrong given they also purchased Siri, maybe a new approach to search. Apple have a way of reproaching what others have done before and reinventing it.
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post #36 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by mknopp View Post

LOL!

It still amazes me that some people still don't get it. Apple is a hardware company. The software and stores are there to help sell their hardware.

So, let's look at your example from another angle.

Spot the obvious loser here:

Amazon kindle, can only read books from Amazon bookstore.

Apple iPad can read books from Amazon, B&N, Borders, iBookstore, and soon Google Editions.

Google doesn't sell hardware, but will presumably make money from sells of Android, which can read books from Amazon, B&N, Borders, and Google Editions.

The sad thing is that Amazon is unlikely to expand the Kindle to read books from other stores.

See how narrow minded and just flat out wrong that is?

Sure Amazon wants the Kindle to do well, but if it doesn't, it is no big deal because they are primarily a retailer who makes their money from sales of books, not hardware. Sure Apple wants the iBookstore to do well but if it doesn't, it is not big deal because they are primarily a hardware company who makes their money from sales of hardware, not eBooks.

As for Google Editions, it is a little too early for its own good. Sure, it would work fine while I am sitting at home. However, how about when I am on a four hour flight? Or how well will it work when I don't have 3G and no hot spot access at a restaurant? The majority of people still do not have ubiquitous access to the internet at all times, thus, there will be a strong desire for locally stored books to read. Perhaps in another decade or two the total cloud model will work out, but that isn't today or even tomorrow.

Besides, everyone seems to be overlooking the biggest monkey wrench in any eBook scheme the evil publishing houses. Just how on board are they to Google's plans? How many big publishing houses and which ones have signed up? These details seem to be conspicuously lacking at this time. To me this just sounds like another Google TV, where before its release everyone was touting that it was going to be a huge game changer, but once released the networks neutered it where it stood by taking away the content.

I wouldn't count your chickens before they are hatched with Google. They fail more often than they succeed with stuff other than search.


This article is about ebook stores, in that arena the kindle store is and always will be more dominant than the iBooks store.

The thing with google is that they can afford to fail on things. The whole company is like a collection of start up companies. Sooner or later they are going to hit a home run.
post #37 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by screamingfist View Post

i do. i read technical books on my desktop at work and i move from ipad, to windows to mac to linux and use kindle reader for all of them.

iBooks on the iPad can read ePub or PDF format, so I don't see why that's an issue. There's also a Kindle app for iPad if that is an issue.

iBookstore flaws aside (ePub+DRM format that can only be read on iPad), the iPad is still the most flexible device. I would say the problem is more with whatever author is making your technical books, and what format they choose to sell their books in.

DRM sucks regardless of what platform or device you are talking about.
post #38 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by tjw View Post

This article is about ebook stores, in that arena the kindle store is and always will be more dominant than the iBooks store.

The thing with google is that they can afford to fail on things. The whole company is like a collection of start up companies. Sooner or later they are going to hit a home run.

Sort of like the home runs that Apple hits on a consistent basis...

Kindle always more dominant? Please tell us more.
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post #39 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by tjw View Post

Free with ads will ALWAYS win. ...

via Daring Fireball:

Quote:
It turns out that there is something that can compete with free: easy.

http://www.time.com/time/specials/pa...032903,00.html

Anyone who deals with Google any more than they absolutely can't avoid is a fool. Although there are many things I don't agree with Richard Stallman on, he's right that "the cloud" is a trap. Google's services, all of them, are a trap. Google's cloud is really a fog hiding a rocky lee shore, and Google's services are like the wreckers who put out false lights to lure ships onto those rocks so they can plunder them.
post #40 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by Flash_beezy View Post

What's funny is I edit those books and they don't pay me squat!! I want a pay raise google if you succeed (I work in the dept that scans and edits these books lol) plus not to mention it will prob be available soon as I've been lumped into a expedited group and we've been told that the books are "high priority" bs pay me more before I have to work harder for my 10$ an hour

You should see the scanning crew with the OCR equipment! Looks like a sweat shop almost

You're an editor? Have you actually read your own post?

I weep for the future of the English language. Nice knowin' you!

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