First reported last year, Google have finally lifted the lid on their new universal format e-book store, which is scheduled to launch by the end of 2010 in the U.S., and internationally by the first quarter of 2011.
Initially, Google Editions was to launch back in the summer but suffered some technical and legal issues which prevented the launch. Those issues have now been resolved accorded to an unnamed source via the Wall Street Journal.
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Google Editions will aim to disrupt the market share currently dominated by Amazon, who offer e-books to customers who have the Kindle — an Amazon product.
This is where Google come in. They say that Editions will be “universal,” meaning that books purchased will be available to users with all sorts of devices. Namely the Amazon Kindle, the Apple iPad, Sony Reader and the Nook by Barnes and Noble.
Editions will be available to all users who have internet access, as the e-books are stored “on the cloud,” meaning that you will have to be online when reading them.
One significant disadvantage Google Editions has though, is that these e-books will not be downloadable per-say. Usually, e-books are digitally downloaded so that they can be read offline.
But Google does not want it to work this way. Instead, they briefly mention that you can still access the e-books via cached versions in your browser, but want to keep each Google Edition personal to the customer who bought it, so that they would not abuse it (share purchased e-books).
Amazon have known this was coming for sometime. But do they have a reason to fear Google Editions? Will it be anywhere as good as Google search, or will it flop like Google Wave?
You can find out more about Google Editions via this Google page here.
Source: PC World