Over the past weekend Google made it known that it was getting ready to enter the E-book marketplace and will take on top distributor Amazon head to head. Google plans to be in the market by the end of 2009.
Google will be taking a different approach than Amazon and Sony have with producing a dedicated E-book reader. The marketplace will be browser based so that any device able to connect to the internet will be able to view and purchase E-books. What is not clear is if you buy a book on your PC will you be able to read it on your cell phone, pda, or other mobile device.
Google will also allow publishers/authors to set the price point for the E-books unlike Amazon who usually only charges $9.99 for new best sellers as opposed to $26 a best seller will get for the hard copy version. "In selling e-books at $9.99, Amazon takes a loss on each sale because publishers generally charge booksellers about half the list price of a hardcover — typically around $13 or $14."
As Google prepares to enter the E-book market the biggest question remains if it will be successful. Without a locked price structure like that of iTunes it may be a hard sale to the consumer. But, with a large amount of potential useable devices it could also work well for those who do not want to purchase a dedicated E-book reader.