Google plans to sell e-book from next month

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

WASHINGTON - US internet search software giant Google plans to sell digital edition of books in late June or July, throwing the firm into a battle that already involves, Apple Inc. and Barnes & Noble Inc.

Google has been discussing its plan for distributing books online for several years and for months has been evangelising about its new service, called Google Editions, a company official said Tuesday.

The company will allow users to access books from a broad range of websites using an array of devices, unlike rivals that are focused on proprietary devices and software, The Wall Street Journal reported.

Chris Palma, Google’s manager for strategic-partner development, announced the time table for Google’s plans Tuesday at a publishing- industry panel in New York.

Users will be able to buy digital copies of books they discover through its book-search service. It will also allow book retailers-even independent shops-to sell Google Editions on their own sites, giving partners the bulk of the revenue, the company said.

The company would have copies on its servers for works it strikes agreements to sell. Google is still deciding whether it will follow the model where publishers set the retail price or whether Google sets the price.

Users of Google Editions would be able to read books from a web browser-meaning that the type of e-reader device wouldn’t matter. The company also could build software to optimise reading on certain devices like an iPhone or iPad but hasn’t announced any specific plans, the paper said.

Filed under: Economy

Tags: ,
will not be displayed