After finalising the e-book pricing deal with publishing giant Macmillan, Amazon.com is readying up for further pricing negotiations with other major publishing houses which are keen on adopting the new e-book pricing model put forward by Apple Inc., for its iPad tablet device.
Amazon has remained unchallenged in the e-book domain for a long time all thanks to its highly popular Kindle reading device and has always maintained the standard $9.99 pricing for all e-books on its platform.
Due to the dominant market position of Kindle, publishers were forced to abide by Amazon's pricing module.
However now, with the launch of Apple's iPad and the iBook e-book store, publishers are looking to shift to the pricing module offered by Apple that allows publishers to set the prices of the e-books offered by them.
Nat Sobel, president of the New York literary agency Sobel Weber Associates, commenting on the changing e-book prices, told the Wall Street Journal that “We are going to see companies in the book business that can buy and sell the entire publishing industry. Whatever these 800-pound gorillas want they may ultimately get— unless publishers are very careful on how they proceed.”
According to recent reports, five major publishing houses including Harper Collins and Hachette have voiced their intentions of adopting the pricing model offered by Apple Inc., and will soon hold talks with Amazon Inc.
The publishing houses are keen not to emulate their music label counterparts who have been squeezed by iTunes. Apple was in a position whereby it could dictate its terms and the success of iTunes helped it convinced labels to play by its rules. In the publishing world, things are now rather different.
(Wall Street Journal)