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Apple wins Perseus books, sparks tension with Amazon

updated 05:30 pm EDT, Mon March 22, 2010

Apple gets sixth iPad book deal

Apple today confirmed that it has struck a deal with Perseus Books Group to bring its titles to the iBookstore and the iPad. The move puts the largest collection of independent publishers on the tablet and should make the titles available by the time the iPad ships on April 3rd. Perseus' involvement should provide books from firms like restaurant guide Zagat, Harvard Business School Press and other both fiction and non-fiction publishers.

Pricing details weren't divulged, but the NYT understands from tips that the deal should remain the same as rumored for major publishers, where companies keep 70 percent of revenue and most new books will cost between $13 and $15.

The agreement may force a decision for Perseus, which already offers some e-books on the Kindle Store. Rumors have persisted that Apple will require the same pricing at other stores and would conflict directly with Amazon. Although the retailer has been willing to strike agency model deals with Macmillan and possibly other large firms to let them set e-book prices, it's thought to be staunchly opposed to letting any independent do the same.

If accurate, Perseus' choice to back Apple could either force it to abandon the Kindle or else Amazon to raise prices for one of the largest independent book coalitions, eroding one of its main advantages. Kindle books have usually been priced on the wholesale model and let Amazon charge just $10 or less for e-books, even when they have dropped below the raw cost of the text. Apple's iBookstore pricing has allegedly been more appealing to publishers trying to set more realistic expectations for prices and to adapt pricing depending on popularity or age.

Tips have claimed that Perseus has already flown out to Amazon this week, but the results of the talk weren't known as of Monday.



By Electronista Staff
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Comments

  1. MyRightEye

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Apr 2008

    -7

    Unbelievable...

    "Although the retailer"

    Where can I find one of Amazon's retail locations?

  1. heyjp

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Feb 2009

    +10

    Retail

    This is an anal retentive answer, but "retail" does not require a brick-and-mortar location. According to the dictionary, "To retail" is to "sell in small quantities directly to an end user who consumes, not for resale". So Amazon is a HUGE retailer. Just no physical store locations.

    Retentive Jim

  1. Foe Hammer

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Feb 2005

    +1

    A Testudo-Bait Article If I Ever Saw One

    But sometimes it helps to jiggle to pole a bit.

    Did Perseus fly Pegasus or commercial to the Amazon?

  1. iphonerulez

    Dedicated MacNNer

    Joined: Nov 2008

    0

    Apple is getting a fair amount of content...

    which is going to give it an edge over other tablets. Unless Google can wrangle some digital contract from publishers, they're going to have Android tablets with nothing much on them. Possibly the same with the HP Slate. Well, at least those users may have to work harder to get digital content on them. I'm only saying this because pundits keep yakking about the iPad might not have content on it by April 3rd or that the iPad will be somehow devoid of content. Apple will have Barnes and Noble and now Perseus. I'd also heard that iPad will be able to use the 30,000 book Gutenberg collection.

  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001

    -2

    Really?

    Apple's iBookstore pricing has allegedly been more appealing to publishers trying to set more realistic expectations for prices and to adapt pricing depending on popularity or age.

    Your kidding me. Publishers find it more appealing when they can set their own inflated price of their wares? Especially when they get to keep everything except the stipend that goes to the author? Wow, I never would have guessed that. This is so opposite than any other industry I can think of!.

    BTW, you'll note that it doesn't say Amazon is losing money on books, just that they charge less than the cost of the 'printed' version. Which one would kind of hope for, right?

  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001

    -2

    Re: Apple is getting a fair amount of content...

    which is going to give it an edge over other tablets. Unless Google can wrangle some digital contract from publishers, they're going to have Android tablets with nothing much on them. Possibly the same with the HP Slate.

    Wow, who knew. I bet there are people out there who never realized the one and only focus of the iPad is as a book reader. And not only that, but apparently this is the only reason one would want a tablet computer. Because who knew that, without such content as being able to read a book, these things will basically be useless.

    Then this is good news. For if Apple didn't get these publishers on-board, there would be a lot of people cancelling their iPad orders.

    Well, at least those users may have to work harder to get digital content on them.

    Not much harder. Go to Amazon.com. Download Kindle book. Open up Kindle reader. Wait, you're right, that was hard! They had to click like two or three things!

    I'd also heard that iPad will be able to use the 30,000 book Gutenberg collection.

    Wow! You mean all those books in the Gutenberg collection that everyone has access to on any platform, including the iPod Touch and iPhone, right now! Well, who cares about that. Knowing it will be available on the iPad is a major achievement!

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