Sony Opens eBook Reader To Other Online Stores - InformationWeek
IoT
IoT
Mobile // Mobile Devices
News
7/24/2008
03:34 PM
50%
50%
RELATED EVENTS
The Real Impact of a Data Security Breach
Aug 02, 2017
In this webcast, experts discuss the real losses associated with a breach, both in the data center ...Read More>>

Sony Opens eBook Reader To Other Online Stores

The Kindle, however, is tethered to Amazon.com, supporting only what's available through the retailer.


Sony Reader Digital Book

Sony Reader Digital Book
(click for larger image)

Sony on Thursday released a software upgrade that opens up the company's e-book reading device to online stores other than its own.

The move is expected to increase the number electronic books available for Sony's Reader, which only supported the 45,000 books Sony had in its library. By comparison, Amazon.com's competing Kindle could download 140,000 e-books available through the online retailer.

The Kindle, however, is tethered to Amazon.com, supporting only what's available through the retailer. In opening up its Reader, Sony could be marking the beginning of more openness in the young e-book market.

Reader owners can download the software upgrade immediately from Sony's support Web site. Starting next month, new Readers will have the software preinstalled.

In opening up the Reader, Sony chose to support the EPUB format backed by the International Digital Publishing Forum, an e-book publishing trade group whose supporters include Simon & Schuster, Penguin Group, HarperMedia, Hachette Book Group, HarperMedia, and Harlequin Enterprises.

In addition, the device will support Adobe Digital Editions software, which makes it possible to read copyright-protected PDF files. The software is available for free download through Adobe. The Reader also will continue to support the BBeB format used by Sony's eBook Store.

Sony said it would consider support for other formats to widen the variety of content available for its device. "This upgrade opens the door to a whole host of paid and free content from third party e-book stores, Web sites and even public libraries," Steve Haber, senior VP of consumer product marketing for Sony, said in a statement.

Sony sells the device for about $300, while Amazon offers the Kindle for $359. Amazon, however, makes it easy for publishers and individuals to make their books available, taking 65% of the proceeds. The online retailer also includes wireless support in the Kindle for access to Amazon over a cellular network at no additional charge. Both devices weigh less than a pound, are very thin, and have 6-inch displays.

Amazon and Sony do not release sales figures for their readers, but analysts say the market today is very small. Nevertheless, it does show signs of taking off.

Worldwide shipments of e-book displays are expected to increase to 18.3 million units in 2012, a 161% compound annual growth rate from 150,000 units in 2007, according to market researcher iSuppli. Revenue is forecast to reach $291.2 million during the same timeframe from $3.5 million, a CAGR of 143%.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
To learn more about what organizations are doing to tackle attacks and threats we surveyed a group of 300 IT and infosec professionals to find out what their biggest IT security challenges are and what they're doing to defend against today's threats. Download the report to see what they're saying.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
IT Strategies to Conquer the Cloud
Chances are your organization is adopting cloud computing in one way or another -- or in multiple ways. Understanding the skills you need and how cloud affects IT operations and networking will help you adapt.
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Flash Poll