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The Fast Switch Possibilities for e-Books

January 31, 2010 11:04:51.123

Apple brought 5 major publishers to the iPad party, and apparently swooned them with the promise that they could set book prices themselves - something Amazon has been pushing back on. However, I wonder who the rubes really are:

Something's got to give — and before the iPad hits stores in March. Otherwise, given that iPhone's Kindle application will be on the iPad, consumers will have the choice of paying two different prices for the same book on the device. That isn't likely to suit Apple or the publishers.

I can definitely see Apple pulling a shoulder shrug at launch time (or shortly thereafter) and dropping prices down to the level Amazon is setting (or even below as a competitive move) - with the explanation that they really have no choice, given Amazon's market power in the space.

Either way, I expect the price for e-books to drop. The marginal cost of delivery is around zero, and that means that markup will be driven down - just as it has been in the music world via the competition between Amazon and Apple...

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posted by James Robertson

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