Nook shuttered its digital audiobook store this summer, but now it’s getting back in the saddle.
After a two-week beta, Nook launches an audiobook app for Android. For a limited time Nook is offering two free audiobook titles to customers who download the new app.
The audiobook market has been heating up recently, with Scribd adding audiobooks to its subscription ebook platform earlier this month. A start-up called Skybrite is readying its own digital audiobook offering.
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Simon & Schuster Launches Web Magazine (PW)
Scribner announces an online magazine that nods to the historical Scribner’s Magazine. The site will publish original writing and multimedia content by the imprint’s authors, as well as those from other divisions of Simon & Schuster. This isn’t Simon & Schuster’s first foray into web publishing.
Open Road Eyes Spanish Readers (DBW)
Partnering with the Spain-based independent publisher Roca Editorial, Open Road’s Spanish-language imprint aims to greatly expand its distribution of Spanish translations of best-selling ebooks by English-language authors.
Related: Global Rights and Distribution Tactics Explored at DBW15 | Veteran Authors Sweep Ebook Best-Seller List
Why Penguin Random House Should Try Subscription Ebooks (The Shatzkin Files)
The world’s largest trade publisher hasn’t joined HarperCollins and Simon & Schuster in making its titles available through third-party ebook subscription services like Oyster, Scribd and others. And it doesn’t seem ready to change that. But DBW15 Conference Chair Mike Shatzkin argues there’s nothing to stop Penguin Random House from launching its own subscription ebook program. Here’s what it could stand to gain.
Related: Ted Hill of THA Consulting Moderates a Panel on the Subscription Model for Ebooks at DBW15
Will Facebook Take on Amazon? Not Soon (The Digital Reader)
So far, anyway, there appears to be little interest among book buyers in turning to another large web business like Facebook for an alternative to Amazon, as one writer suggested last week. The evidence for that skepticism is purely anecdotal, but it does point up some obstacles Facebook would need to overcome in order to compete seriously with Amazon.
Why the Hachette Feud Hardly Scratched Amazon (Quartz)
Amazon may have suffered a public relations crisis as the Hachette battle wore on, but as one analyst sees it, the e-tailer could afford to–and still can. Here’s why, according to that view, Amazon is likely to come out on top in future book industry squabbles.
Germany Presses for Lower Ebook Taxes (The Digital Reader)
A recent survey indicates support among German consumers for reducing taxes on ebooks, which can be as high as 25% in some parts of Europe. Book prices are fixed by law in Germany, and a new EU tax law set to take effect next year is likely to change the retail landscape across the continent.
Publisher Defends Its Cut of Book Profits (The Bookseller)
Little, Brown CEO Ursula Mackenzie argues that publishers “are not taking a disproportionate part of the profit” on they titles publish. The rise of self-publishing has placed new pressure on publishers to justify their business practices, one welcome consequence of which, Mackenzie says, is the increase in the amount and variety of data publishers share with their authors.
Google Consolidates Classroom Victories Over Apple (Teleread)
With New York City public schools officially adopting Chromebooks in K-12 classrooms, Google is steadily shoring up its position in the education technology market.
Related: Google’s Director of Strategic Partnerships Amanda Edmonds Joins DBW15