updated 11:25 pm EST, Thu January 12, 2012
Lending library grows to 75,000 titles
In November, Amazon launched its Lending Library for Kindle owners. Today the online retailer released statistics illustrating the success of the initiative. For the month of December, the first full month that online lending catalog was available, readers borrowed more than 295,000 e-books.
During the month, the total number of books available for borrowing reached 75,000. Amazon is offering free lending of books to subscribers of its Prime service. Prime costs $79 annually, and in addition to book lending, membership benefits include free shipping of merchandise and free streamed video content.
Although the lending library is technically free, Amazon does compensate the authors who provide the content. On average, Amazon paid writers $1.70 in royalties per borrow. The online retailer is known to regularly offer things below cost to build market share.