According to an analysis by the Huffington Post, one e-book retailer undercuts the competition consistently when it comes to e-book prices: Amazon.
No surprise, but the story is more complicated than that.
Looking across over 100 popular e-book titles, HuffPo saw 15 instances of Amazon undercutting the competition and one instance of the competition being cheaper than Amazon. While Amazon has been aggressive at always offering the lowest price, it might find it difficult to continue to do that following the e-book price-fixing settlement recently approved.
The settlement stipulates that each retailer has to break even or make a profit on each publisher’s book of business. The implication is that if Amazon undercuts other retailers on one very popular book, it won’t have the ammunition to discount deeply on other titles. It should provide an opening for other retailers to wield price as a weapon of their own on selective titles.
We’re not seeing the effects of this yet, as only one publisher (HarperCollins) has signed a new deal with retailers following the settlement. When the other publishers have new contracts, it will be interesting to see what books are selling at the lowest prices at which retailers. Six months from now, this HuffPo analysis should look far different.
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The rest of the day’s top news:
Amazon Invades Schools, Libraries, Businesses (DBW)
Amazon’s new Whispercast technology will allow mass deployment of digital content to Kindle devices, greasing the skids for organizations with fleets of e-reading and tablet devices to distribute content to them; a potentially very useful feature for schools, libraries, businesses and other organizations.
Humble Bundle on a Roll, Adds New Books (SlashGear)
The Humble eBook Bundle experiment from Humble Bundle, a company that bundles content and allows users to set the price and the revenue breakdown, is nearing $1 million in revenue over several weeks on a baker’s dozen of books (five more were just added). Impressive numbers.
Kobo Computer Bug (techdirt)
A ghost in the machine was causing Kobo to offer international prices to domestic book buyers for a short period of time.
Social Media Race (DBW)
Check out our re-vamped social media dashboard which tracks and ranks the Facebook and Twitter efforts with metrics that measure both audience and engagement for 16 of the largest publishers. How does your publishing house stack up?
Sources: Amazon to Buy Brazilian Bookseller? (Bloomberg)
Amazon is said by a source familiar with the matter to be in talks to buy Saraiva SA Livreiros Editores, a Brazilian publisher and bookstore chain.
How Will You Discover Your Next Books? (Forbes)
The old-fashioned way, through word of mouth or in a bookstore, or through one of several new start-ups that promise new, better ways of discovering your next great read.
New Content Creation Tool (Pub Weekly)
The Shadow Gang, an interactive entertainment studio, has released Galahad, a new transmedia content creation tool designed to power multi-platform projects. Related: Scholastic’s David Levithan on Hunger Games and Transmedia.
Why You (Yes, You) Should Publish an E-Book (Business Insider)
If you’re a typical DBW reader, you probably work for a book publisher, or at a library or bookstore. You might be an agent or an author or a publishing consultant. But have you ever published a book yourself? Business Insider is telling laypeople why they should join the self-publishing revolution.
Discount image via Shutterstock