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No plans for Apple e-book service, says source

updated 11:05 am EDT, Fri July 31, 2009

No Apple e-books coming

Apple does not have any interest in building an e-book store, at least at the moment, an anonymous industry source claims. Speculation has arisen because of reports documenting an upcoming tablet device, generally expected to measure 10 inches and carry a built-in 3G connection. Regardless of whether or not the tablet supports e-ink technology, it could represent competition for Amazon's dominant Kindle readers.

The source suggests that any e-book support on the Apple tablet will have to come from third-party companies, which could include Barnes & Noble or Amazon itself. A Kindle application is already available for the iPhone.

Silicon Alley Insider observes that Apple may be avoiding e-books for several reasons. These include a small audience relative to the amount of money needed for e-book publishing, which could also fail to sell more hardware, the main purpose of iTunes and the App Store. Enough e-book apps already exist on the App Store moreover, from which Apple pulls 30 percent of the revenue.

Apple may also have had bad experiences with e-books several years ago. The book industry was then and now archaic and disorganized, the source claims, prompting Apple CEO Steve Jobs to cancel distribution plans.

by MacNN Staff





  1. slider

    Joined: Dec 1969


    No Way

    While there is a market for eBooks/Kindle, it's is very limited. And Steve Jobs has made his position on this very clear. Any kind of book digital device has to have e-ink for serious readers. While a backlight device, such as the iPhone, is accept able for reading for a limited time (such as unexpected down time and no eReader at hand) reading a book on such a device is very hard on the eyes. People that speculate that reading on any backlit device just aren't eBook readers. There is a reason e-ink technology was developed.

    Again, there is no way Apple would be interested in directly competing in this very limited space.

  1. alfredo

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Why should they when Amazon and Barnes & Noble have perfectly good readers for our platform.

  1. Str1f3

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Yes Way

    I think it would be a good idea. It is well suited for students. The main problem with these e-readers is that there is no color, limited ability to highlight & take notes. It has multimedia capabilities and handwriting recognition which could be the replacement for a laptop for a student entering college.

    This device could cut costs on textbooks, notebooks, and books for students in the long run.

  1. Peter Bonte

    Joined: Dec 1969


    To bad

    Why can't Apple extend there relationship with music labels to offer comics and books? CD-baby could easily do this as an extra service, to bad Apple won't just add an extra category. :(

    The rumored Digital Album Enhancements could be a viable alternative, just sell the comic with song imbedded.

  1. ZinkDifferent

    Joined: Dec 1969



    "Why would anyone want to watch to watch video on an iPod?"

  1. JulesLt

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Novels vs Reference

    A tablet would be an ideal form for a lot of reference books - especially as has been noted, any that currently use colour, which e-ink has yet to solve - although with forthcoming improvements in web technologies (web fonts and better text layout support, such as columns) there is little reasons why they should simply not be web sites.

    As noted, it's still not a good form for a novel - there's a good reason paperbacks have ended up at the size they are.

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