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At the present time, Amazon only sells kindle books. Amazon is missing out on a large market since Nook, Kobo, and the other e-readers read epub and can't read the Kindle format.

The most logical thing for Amazon to do is to start selling epub books too.  That would be welcome news to us Indie authors since it would make more sales for us.

So do expect Amazon to start selling epub books?
 

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IMO, theological thing for Amazon to do would be make apps for the Nook, Kobo etc. I really want the new Nook but nearly all my ebooks are from Amazon and read on my iPhone. If I could get a eReader that could do all the different formats with e-ink, I'd rush out to buy it! Seems there's a hack for Android Kindle app on Nooks but I'm not familiar enough with circumventing hardware to dk it yet...
 

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Franklin Eddy said:
The most logical thing for Amazon to do is to start selling epub books too. That would be welcome news to us Indie authors since it would make more sales for us.

So do expect Amazon to start selling epub books?
Amazon will only do what serves Amazon best, as any company will do. Considering that they only recently made their device able to read pdfs (and still don't even offer that option), I wouldn't hold my breath for it to be anytime soon.
 

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Amazon has announced that they will begin to support library lending sometime later this year.  Some have speculated that this means they'll update the Kindle OS to support ePub.  I think that's unlikely.  I think it's more likely, because of some of the features (make and keep notes, etc.) they hope to offer, that there will be a conversion process that goes through Amazon's servers.

Kobo and Sony are a relatively small segment of the e-reader market.  Nook is gaining.  I don't think Amazon gains anything, particularly, by switching to or adding ePub support.  All those stores sell books with their own version of copy protection anyway, so you wouldn't just be able to buy from anywhere:  Nook books don't work on a Kobo and vice versa even though they're both ePub.

And an argument can be made that, considering the relative market share, maybe the other sellers should switch to Mobi -- which is the format underlying the Kindle specific format.

FWIW, Kindle also has apps for reading Kindle books on iThings, Android tablets and smartphones, and both Mac and Windows based computers.  They've got a toehold on pretty much every portable device.

And, as for using Nook to read Kindle Books -- I believe both the Nook Color and Nook Smart Touch are android based and they've been 'rooted' to run the Kindle for Android App.

I'll also note that Amazon is extremely customer-centric. . . . that's why they're so generous in replacing damaged Kindles.  Sure, it keeps the device in the hands of readers who can then buy more books.  Obviously it is to their benefit: they want to turn a profit as much as the next guy.  Their business model is to look at the long term and do their best to keep their customers happy so that they'll consider Amazon first for all their on line purchasing.  Pretty smart, really.

So I have no doubt that Amazon is constantly looking at where they stand and what they do. . . .and if a significant majority of their Kindle customers wanted a certain feature, I think they'd look very seriously at implementing it.  I believe, however, that KB represents only a very small percentage of all Kindle owners/users out there.  So while some here may feel like 'everyone' is clamoring for ePub support or whatever, it's not really 'everyone' when you consider the huge numbers of Kindles that have been sold.  It's probably only a tiny minority of their customers.

I know at least half a dozen people who own Kindles who don't give two hoots about format or DRM or anything else except that they can download and read tons of books on their Kindles. And if something breaks Amazon's got their back.  That's really all they care about.  None of them use the browser or PDF reader or text to speech -- a couple of them are probably not even aware those features exist!  And, honestly, I think THOSE people are more representative of most Kindle owners than even the average KB member. . . . .

In conclusion. . . . I don't really see the concern about Amazon not offering ePub support.  It's not like there are huge numbers of books only available in that format.  And, for those that are, if they're not copy protected, they are easily converted.  If they are copy protected. . . .you can still only read them on the reader for which they're intended.  Just like Kindle books. :)

 

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Someone mentioned an ereader that reads both formats? My Aluratek Libre reads everything. The only pain the butt is that it won't read a DRM-enabled kindle file, so I have to unswindle it before moving it over to my ereader.

That being said, if kindles get a little bit cheaper, I may just buy one. I can see myself being the kind of person who owns four or five different ereaders. :)
 

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For Amazon, the logic of adding formats depends on their objective. Unless we know their goals and objectives we can't say what strategy is logical.
 

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Ladyeclectic said:
IMO, theological thing for Amazon to do would be make apps for the Nook, Kobo etc. I really want the new Nook but nearly all my ebooks are from Amazon and read on my iPhone. If I could get a eReader that could do all the different formats with e-ink, I'd rush out to buy it! Seems there's a hack for Android Kindle app on Nooks but I'm not familiar enough with circumventing hardware to dk it yet...
The Bebook reads most formats. I have had one for some time. It's not quite as easy to use as the kindle, but it gets the job done.
http://mybebook.com/6-inch-ereaders/c14/p5/bebook-one-ereader/product_info.html
 

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Seconding Ann.

Amazon doesn't have to adapt as long as they have the dominant platform and app. That's just not how the web has worked with any format adoption historically. And also as mentioned, I agree with the belief that readers don't care about formats as long as they can read what books they want on the device they have.

Another possibility would be if Amazon opens up the Kindle enough to allow third party programmers to create versions of different reading software and read different formats, similar to what is happening in the Apple store. You can get apps to read ebooks in a bunch of different formats on the iPad/iPod Touch/iPhone. If Amazon wants to turn the Kindle into something other than an e-reader (compete with Apple's devices for example), this would be the way to go but it would mean competition for their Kindle app just like the iPad has competition for iTunes/iBooks on that device.
 

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Ann in Arlington said:
Kobo and Sony are a relatively small segment of the e-reader market. Nook is gaining. I don't think Amazon gains anything, particularly, by switching to or adding ePub support. All those stores sell books with their own version of copy protection anyway, so you wouldn't just be able to buy from anywhere: Nook books don't work on a Kobo and vice versa even though they're both ePub.
Actually, that's not quite true. Although e-books with B&N DRM only work on a Nook, the Nook can easily (meaning without cracking DRM or converting format) read books from the Sony store or Kobo/Borders. Sony and Kobo/Borders sell books with Adobe Adept DRM, which is fully supported on the Nook. This is why the Nook (and Sony reader and Kobo reader and a number of other e-readers) can also support the Overdrive library e-books - same Adobe DRM that they all support.

Ann in Arlington said:
In conclusion. . . . I don't really see the concern about Amazon not offering ePub support. It's not like there are huge numbers of books only available in that format. And, for those that are, if they're not copy protected, they are easily converted. If they are copy protected. . . .you can still only read them on the reader for which they're intended. Just like Kindle books. :)
For me, it's more of the principle of the thing. The current IDPF e-book standard format is ePub, so in my mind whatever other formats different e-readers support, they should all at least support the current standard, meaning ePub at this current time. Maybe this comes from my background working in software development, but it irks me when companies ignore industry standards, whether it's Microsoft or Apple or whoever. The different flavors of DRM are annoying enough (Amazon, B&N, Adobe, Apple), can't they all at least support the same format?

Who knows how Amazon will make library support work, but I would think the easiest way would be to add support for ePub and Adobe DRM. Perhaps they will just be adding a way to make the existing .mobi OverDrive books work. Even if the Kindle adds ePub/Adobe DRM support in addition to the currently supported formats, I can't imagine that they'll start selling ePub. Why would they unless they want to start selling e-books to those with other e-readers?
 

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Todd Russell said:
Seconding Ann.

Amazon doesn't have to adapt as long as they have the dominant platform and app.
This. As long as the Kindle continues outselling all other ereaders I don't see any reason Amazon would switch formats. By making their ebooks available to be easily read only on Kindles, they're actually increasing the sale of Kindles. They're killing two birds with one stone, selling the ebooks and the devices to read them on.
 

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Franklin Eddy said:
At the present time, Amazon only sells kindle books. Amazon is missing out on a large market since Nook, Kobo, and the other e-readers read epub and can't read the Kindle format.

The most logical thing for Amazon to do is to start selling epub books too. That would be welcome news to us Indie authors since it would make more sales for us.

So do expect Amazon to start selling epub books?
This topic shows up 2-3 times a month, like clockwork.

1) Amazon's not "missing out" on a market. That's a misnomer. Amazon defined their market by choosing .mobi and currently control 65-70 percent of the entire ebook market.

2) Even if Amazon offered .ePub as an alternate format, that does not mean that their .ePub files would work on Nook, Kobo, etc. There's more to it than .ePub. There's being an approved vendor, and BN.com, Kobo, etc. are competitors with Amazon, so they're not going to approve Amazon as a vendor. And it's not something Amazon is interested in.

3) The closest you'll get to this being a reality is this: The Nook Color is an Android Tablet. With a couple easy-to-find hacks, you can access the full Android Market on a Nook Color. Once you do this, you can side-load the Kindle for Android app onto a Nook Color, and access all your Amazon books on a Nook Color in this way... though it's a hack and you basically void your warranty when you do this (though there are safeguards and workarounds to that, if you know your Android stuff).

4) If Amazon launches a Kindle-compatible Android tablet, as is widely believed that they will, one would likely eventually be able to hack Amazon's tablet, install Nook for Android on it, and do likewise. But that's not possible on current Kindles.

That's about the size of it.

So even if Amazon starts selling ePub documents, that will not mean you can load your books on a Nook or Kobo device. Sorry. It's just more complex than that.
 
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