Electronic books are gaining in popularity and the future of the e-books market looks promising. Currently, web retail giants such as Amazon.com, have been a serious threat for thousands of small independent bookstores. Its all about to be changed with regard to e-books, since Google Edition, the new Google venture on e-books plans on playing the role of a wholesaler so that independent bookstores are able to retail e-books at competitive prices.
Google has been closing in on a deal with American Booksellers Association recently, to make Google editions the sole distributor for e-books to be sold across 1400 member online-bookstores. This will in fact safeguard the small-timers from being decimated by the likes of Amazon, Apple and Sony. Although Google would retail e-books on it’s own site, the overall process helps in standardizing the e-book trading and prices.
Big competitors are already in the game and one wonders if Google is too late to respond to the e-book market. But the experts at Google think they can provide something that none of the competitors provide; a platform independent e-book solution. Which means that e-books should be compatible across many digital readers regardless of the make and model. Google editions believe in a system where people will be able to access their book shelf or buy new books just by entering their Google credentials. The e-books would also be browser compatible, so any computing device that is connected to the internet automatically becomes an e-book reader as well.
Good news for independent bookstores
Google’s way of stepping into the arena has caught the attention of many hundred independent bookstores. Because Google’s plan of action with regard to e-books market has been in line with the business expectations of small timers, Google’s interest of the e-books market has been welcomed by many. However, Google’s intentions of retailing e-books on their own site has not been considered an issue as long as Google alone will handle duties as the only source of e-books in the market.
Threat for the giants
What would be the position of the competitors such as Amazon.com, Apple and Sony? First of all nobody was talking about e-books that are browser compatible until Google did. Secondly Google does not plan on locking the e-books sold to any particular reading device, as opposed to the Apple iBookstore of which the e-books can be read only on Apple devices. Overall the business plan of Google in relation to e-books, seems more efficient and user friendly which means a considerable threat to the big names already operating in the market.
If there are any emerging markets online, apparently Google wants a share of it, and for the right reasons they have succeeded on almost every occasion, such transition took place. Its not clearly evident as to how exactly Google Edition plans to operate, but little clues indicate that Google Editions will have a lot of surprises for both the users and the competitors.