E-books galore

Sony expands its e-library, challenging Amazon.com.



Joe Hutsko
July 25, 2008 5:00PM (UTC)

What better way to round out my weeklong gig as the Machinist's guest blogger than with a bit of news that brings us full circle to my first post of the week.

In a move that may help it catch up to the Amazon Kindle's library of titles, Sony yesterday announced it will begin supporting an e-book format favored by a wide group of publishers, including big houses Penguin Group, HarperMedia and Simon & Schuster. Existing Sony Reader Digital Book owners can download an update for the device now, and new versions of the Reader will ship with support for the new format.

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Prior to today's news, Sony's Reader ($300) was limited to about 45,000 titles, while Amazon reported an available library of 140,000 titles for its Kindle ($360) e-book reader.

Me, I'm delighted with eReader on my iPhone 3G, which isn't to say I'm not excited about Sony's news. While open support for more formats across devices is a win for publishers and the manufacturers of readers, the biggest winners are the ones on the receiving end of all that digital text: we the readers, divided perhaps by platform but united in our love of books (real ones included).


Joe Hutsko

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