Kindle

Is Amazon Losing its eBook Domination?

As digital publishing explodes, more and more players are tossing their hats into the ring—including authors, publishers and device manufacturers. How is this affecting the long-time industry leader, Amazon?

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Since launching its revolutionary, best-selling Kindle eReader in 2007, Amazon enjoyed a virtual monopoly on the digital book market until recently. In the third quarter of 2010, the Kindle device retained a smaller, yet still impressive 41.5% market share, representing 1.14 million of 2.7 million eReaders sold during that period.

However, the online giant is rapidly losing ground to up-and-coming competitors like Apple’s iPad tablet, Sony, Pandigital, Kobo and the Barnes & Noble Nook, which now claims 25% of the eReader market.

When it comes to eBook sales Amazon still reigns supreme, boasting 950,000 digital titles that represent 60-65% of the market, as announced at BookExpo America last month. This past January, Kindle sales surpassed paperbacks in the Amazon online store and as of one month ago, they are outselling all printed books offered by the company.

If the iPad2 and Nook Color continue gaining in popularity, Amazon will be challenged to maintain its domination of the eReader and eBook markets. They have already responded by offering a lower-priced, ad-supported version of the Kindle, and it will be interesting to see what comes next.

Stay tuned and we’ll be sure to keep you updated at Between the Lines, our BookRix blog!

Downloading BookRix e-Books to e-Readers

In the past, BookRix has given contest prizes of e-Readers, such as the Kindle for the Worst Nightmares mini-contest (of which Gooduklady was the lucky and talented winner) and soon an iPad in the Dear Diary contest! But did you know you can download e-books from BookRix to your e-Reader? It’s fairly easy to do so regardless of if you have a Kindle, Nook, iPad or other e-Reader!

It’s as simple as going to the book on BookRix that you want to read and hit the Download/E-Reader button on the right below the book cover (see image below). Follow the prompts to download the book to your computer or your e-Reader device.

Where to find the Download eReader button

For most e-Readers, you’re set to go because your e-Reader accepts the ePub file format. For the Kindle however, you will need to convert the ePub files to Kindle-friendly formats like .mobi. To do so, you will need the help of third party conversion software programs like Calibre and Mobipocket. There may be some formatting that does not convert well, but that mostly occurs with complicated layouts or formatting. Once you have converted the e-book into a Kindle-friendly format, you’re on your way to enjoy your free e-books. With thousands of books and e-books in our online library to choose from on BookRix.com, you’re sure to find several e-books that e-xcite you!

Have a favorite book or author online on BookRix? Share it in a comment here on this blog post!

Self-Published Authors Riding Wave of Success

Self-Published_Authors_Riding_Waves_of_Success_Article_BookRixSo far, her astounding success story has been picked up by Huffington Post, USA Today and is soon to grace the pages of Elle Magazine. Twenty-six-year-old millionaire and self-published writer Amanda Hocking is taking the e-book world by storm with her mega-popular urban fantasy and paranormal romance novels that sell exclusively in e-book formats.

Just this past weekend, New York Times best-selling spy thriller novelist Barry Eisler announced that he recently turned down a $500,000 book deal with an unnamed legacy publisher in order to self-publish his own popular books.  “Based on what’s happening in the industry, and based on the kind of experience writers…are having in self-publishing, I think I can do better in the long term on my own,” Eisler told J.A. Konrath in a lengthy interview posted on his blog as well as Konrath’s.

Successful_Self_Published_Authors_Amanda_Hocking_Barry_Eisler_JA_Konrath_Leigh_Fallon_Karen_McQuestion_HP_Mallory_Seth_Godin_John_L_LockeKonrath, who sells an average of 1,846 e-books daily on Kindle, Nook and other online stores, is a successful thriller e-book novelist who pens a helpful blog for aspiring self-published authors, A Newbie’s Guide to Publishing.

As the long-standing relationship between traditional publishers and new authors continues to evolve, Hocking and Eisler are certainly not along in their lucrative forays into self-publishing. A first novel by Irish teen author Leigh Fallon, Carrier of the Mark, was discovered as an e-book on HarperCollins’ teen social network Inkpop and will be published in print by HarperTeen this fall.

After years of rejections from traditional publishing houses, Wisconsin-based novelist Karen McQuestion self-published several novels as e-books on Amazon’s Kindle in 2009. Since then, one of her novels, A Scattered Life, has been optioned for film and printed as a paperback through AmazonEncore, Amazon’s new publishing division, with more on the way.

The same USA Today article that profiles Hocking also mentions rising self-published author H.P. Mallory, who recently signed a three-book contract with traditional publisher Random House, and the success of German novel The Hangman’s Daughter by Oliver Potzsch, a top-selling (100,000+) Kindle book.

We’ve previously sung the praises of best-selling author Seth Godin in the BookRix blog after he chose to ditch his publisher, Portfolio (Penguin) and sell his books directly to fans via print-on-demand. Another non-fiction author, John L. Locke has gone the same route, selling his books through Amazon with excellent results.

We hope to report about future best-selling BookRix authors someday soon, so keep writing and posting on our site…and share it with your friends!

Congrats to Gooduklady for Worst Nightmares Win!

Congratulations to BookRix member Gooduklady for winning the Worst Nightmares Mini Contest for her book, House of My Dreams.

E-book by Gooduklady on BookRix.com

E-book by Gooduklady on BookRix.com

Gooduklady won a Kindle in the Into the Darkness horror group’s first Mini Contest, Worst Nightmares, featuring scary nightmare stories. The book to come in second place was briandoswell’s The Running Man and third place went to himabindu.works8’s The boy in the striped pajamas.

If you like horror books, check out all the other stories entered into the Mini Contest on BookRix. Congrats again to Gooduklady for her win!

iPod Good for Amazon

5096445720_f2499a670e A recent L.A. Times blog by Alex Pham touted “Apple’s iPad is good for Amazon’s Kindle.” Most look at the Kindle as being solely tied to Amazon; however, this is not necessarily so. Amazon has applications that allow it’s Kindle eReader to be uploaded onto almost any digital device (PC’s, Mac’s, iPhone, iPad, Droids, and BlackBerry). The day of sole provider ebooks looks to be ended. Pham further states:

When Apple unveiled its iPad in January with its full-color high-resolution glory, many assumed it would be end of story for Amazon.com’s Kindle book store and its black-and-white reader.

Turns out the iPad has actually helped Amazon. Not only are sales of the Kindle device expected to grow 140% this year to nearly 5 million units from 2009, but digital book sales via the Kindle store are on track to grow 195% to $701 million in 2010, according to Cowen and Co., which released a report Monday on the digital book market.

Greasing those book sales are Amazon’s Kindle app for iPhone and iPad, which are the digital equivalent of little storefronts that let customers browse, buy and read digital books on those devices. In other words, you don’t have to have a Kindle device to buy a Kindle book.

In fact, one in five people who buy digital books from the Kindle store don’t own a Kindle device, according to Cowen’s survey.

The “iPad is not having a negative impact on Kindle device or e-book sales," according to the report, written by Cowen analysts Jim Friedland and Kevin Kopelman. "In fact, we think the adoption of tablets will boost Kindle e-book sales."

As noted in the Cowen report, many iPad owners buy their ebooks from Apple, but the survey showed that they also buy ebooks from Amazon as well. Although both Amazon and Apple eBooks can only be read on their own devices, Amazon has found a way to get its application uploaded and spread the sale of its own ebooks. “For 2010, Cowan estimates Apple will have 5% of the market for digital books, compared with Amazon, which is projected to have 76% of the market. But by 2015, Cowan estimates Amazon will have 51% of the market and Apple with 16%.”

It appears that Amazon is doing everything possible to spread Kindle eReaders as many places as possible. It will be interesting to see what happens next as more devices come on the market, and Apple steps up in this “ebook war.”

Image: Priit Tammets

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