Feeds

Barnes & Noble muscles Kindle with e-book buy

Gets Fictionwise

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

Barnes & Noble is stumping $15.7m to buy the indie e-book seller Fictionwise.com as part of the mega-chain's second attempt to sell digital books online.

The cash acquisition comes just days after Amazon extended its Kindle e-book store to support the iPhone and iPod Touch for US customers. Amazon may be making small concessions towards making its digital bookstore available outside the Kindle's despotic proprietary format, but B&N appears to sensibly be taking the open format route to compete against its established rival.

Fictionwise currently sells its e-book in a variety of formats to support most of the major e-book readers and mobile devices, so long as the book publishers allow it. The site's co-founder Scott Pendergrast told the e-tome blog TeleRead he was only willing to sell to a vendor who shared is open format philosophy — and hopefully that vision can survive the throes of a B&N acquisition.

Barnes & Noble at least is saying it will give the new e-book biz some space, stating it will run Fictionwise as a separate business unit with the site's founders still running the show.

Keep in mind the mega-chain is currently 0-1 for starting a digital book store. Back in 2001, it opened Barnes & Noble Digital, hoping to tempt publishers and authors alike with slightly higher royalties on e-books than their physical equivalent. After investing at least $20m into the project, B&N discontinued sales of e-book three years after its launch.

But consumer interest in digital books has increased somewhat towards this end of the decade. Or perhaps curiosity is a better word for it — largely thanks to Amazon's creation and devoted pitching of the Kindle and Kindle 2: Electric Boogaloo.

Barnes & Noble said it will roll Fictionwise into its overall digital strategy, which includes the launch of an e-Bookstore later this year. Meanwhile, Fictionwise says Fictionwise.com and the various other sites it runs will continue to run as e-book retailers. ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Hey, Scots. Microsoft's Bing thinks you'll vote NO to independence
World's top Google-finding website calls it for the UK
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
Apple CEO Tim Cook: TV is TERRIBLE and stuck in the 1970s
The iKing thinks telly is far too fiddly and ugly – basically, iTunes
Israeli spies rebel over mass-snooping on innocent Palestinians
'Disciplinary treatment will be sharp and clear' vow spy-chiefs
Huawei ditches new Windows Phone mobe plans, blames poor sales
Giganto mobe firm slams door shut on Microsoft. OH DEAR
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Found inside ISIS terror chap's laptop: CELINE DION tunes
REPORT: Stash of terrorist material found in Syria Dell box
OECD lashes out at tax avoiding globocorps' location-flipping antics
You hear that, Amazon, Google, Microsoft et al?
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.