Google Editions, the much-anticipated eBook platform backed by the biggest tech company in the world, may soon debut...at least in the United States. The Bookseller has news that it...
...will launch in the US this year, with international launches to follow soon after in 2011, delegates at Tools of Change Frankfurt have heard. Google Editions will be available on multiple devices, including the iPad, online via a Google 'web reader', but will not be available on Amazon's Kindle device at launch.
Abraham Murray, product manager on Google's Books team, said at launch in the US there would be over 400,000 paid-for titles available from "publisher partners", along with 2m public domain titles, but that more titles would be made available once the service opened internationally. He said the company was working with more than 35,000 publisher partners, in more than 100 countries, and added that he hoped to launch in "much of Europe in first half of the following year".
Of note is that GE books will be available on multiple reading devices, but *not* the Kindle (at launch at least). Also, in contrast to Amazon's monopolisation of the market, GE is looking to empower booksellers, with Google spokesman Abraham Murray saying they are "enabling booksellers to sell the content instead of going out of business, and enabling readers to buy and read on any device, and be assured that the content will still be around.... Nobody else is giving the bookseller a chance as we move to e-books."