One thing that publishers have to start understand is that the tighter control they try to put on the ebook industry by
1. Controlling the release of the books as ebooks
2. Controllling the price of ebooks
3. Controlling the ebooks access through DRM
would give users enough motive for pirating these contents. Several experiments in the music and Movie has clearly shown that together control on the distribution of these media content lead to an increased activity on P2P sites. Read this paper on SSRN
Publishers should work with Authors and Retailers to come up with a economical model that would duly compensate everyone without restricting the end users much.
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American Editor recently ran a poll to figure out what stops users from buying an ebook. The results are out and no surprises.
1. 57% of the users feel that they are not comfortable buying ebooks due to DRM restrictions set by publishers
2. 26% of the publishers think that pricing of ebooks above $9.99 is detrimental in them buying an ebook. This seems to support the argument given in a recent NYT article about ebook pricing which was condemned by publishers.
3. 8% of the respondednt think that price greater than $4.99 is an issue.
Clearly, the sweet spot for ebooks lies somewhere between $ 3.99 and $9.99. Now its upto publishers, Google, Apple and Amazon to use their brain power to figure out what price they want to support.
Source: Amazon DTP website
We are pleased to announce the worldwide launch of DTP with support for English, French, and German languages. With this launch, authors and publishers around the world can use DTP to upload and sell books in English, German and French to customers worldwide in the Kindle Store(http://www.amazon.com/kindlestore
Additional language options with DTP will be added in the coming months.
We have made a number of other changes to our Terms and Conditions. Key highlights include:
1. We have made it easier than ever for our publishers to exercise their choice of Digital Rights Management (DRM) on Kindle store. Publishers are now able to select ‘Enable or Disable DRM’ option on a per-title basis during the submission process.
2. We now require that a title’s list price not exceed the lowest suggested retail price or equivalent price for any physical edition of the book.
3. To be accepted in the DTP program, digital books with a file size greater than 3 megabytes up to 10 megabytes must also have a list price of at least $1.99, and digital books with a file size of 10 megabytes or greater must have a list price of at least $2.99.We are excited about launching these features and look forward to serving authors and publishers globally.
2010 is going to be flooded with too many ebook devices. Almost every electronics company, book retailer and publishers might launch their own devices. But would so many options leave all consumers happy and satisfied? Analysts predict there would be two kinds of happy e-book reader owners – consumers who paid a hefty amount for a branded ebook from one of the major online retailers (I obviously mean Amazon’s Kindle, Barnes & Noble’s Nook etc) and consumers who spend only about $50-$70 on unbranded ebook readers that support a lot of formats and where consumers will have the potential of downloading pirated copies of ebooks. People who are left are the ones who land up buying the two-tier ebook readers and the makers of them-These people might just be the unsatisfied ones.
e ink based readers by most of the tech companies brings a new dimension to the entire ebook marketplace. I think it would not only increase confusion but also encourage privacy and bring down any company who gets in and can’t hack it against Nook or Kindle.
The competition over device design, platforms, formats, DRM will bring more and more confusion into consumers’ minds and it will become increasingly difficult to distinguish between a good device from bad, a good (worthy) price from bad. In fact some might just emphasize cheap price over quality, interface and service.
Steve Haber, of the Digital Reading Business division at Sony, doesn’t see DRM vanishing soon. and feels that that the Amazon’s price point of $9.99 fits the bestseller pricing strategy and the prices of ebook should vary anywhere between $10-$20 and even as high as $100
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