Feb 022010

With Amazon losing the eBook price battle with one of the big publishers (Mcmillian Publishing Group with 350 companies operating in over 80 countries), what implications will this have on the direction of the eBook market?  Amazon was trying to lower book prices ($9.99) and make up for the price difference with volume, but Mcmillian wants to stand firm at $12.99 to 14.99 for eBook versions of bestsellers and most hardcover releases.  This outcome can not be good for consumers (book lovers).

Sales of eBooks will definitely be lower as consumers have to pay higher prices.  The whole point of driving lower eBook prices was to encourage more eReader usage and hopefully move away from hard cover books.

The launch of the Apple iPad tablet has provided publishers more leverage on the price negotiation front as Apple gives more pricing control to the publishers.  Some publishers will even delay the release of eBooks in order to protect hardcover sales.  Are publishers short-sighted and is Amazon trying to force cheaper eBooks so that Kindle eReader has a competitive advantage?  Thanks to the Apple iPad, Amazon has lost this battle, but they still have a chance to win the war if the consumers vote with their wallets against higher prices!

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