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Old 05-24-2011, 01:40 PM   #1
6charlong
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What books are allowed on the new Kobo & B&N readers?

In the last two days I've seen interesting new book readers offered by Kobo and Barnes and Noble. I seem to remember a year or two ago there was some sort of flap about the DRM Barnes and Noble used on the nook. The last I knew the Kobo used the same Adobe DRM that comes on books you buy from Kobo, Sony's eBook store, Books on Board, eBooks.com, etc.

Both Kobo and Barnes and Noble use ePub formatting so I'm wondering if the two new book readers are interchangable, I mean, can they read books from each other's stores?

The Kindle is limited to reading books you buy from the Amazon bookstore so I know these new readers from Kobo and B&N won't let you read books you buy from Amazon but I wondered about all the rest.
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Old 05-24-2011, 01:52 PM   #2
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I don't know about Kobo, but B&N has their own version of Adobe DRM & if you have another reader like Sony, you will be unable to purchase B&N books & load them onto your Sony.

But if you are just starting out with a reader, then you will be fine. It only messes up those of us who already have readers other than a Nook that lose out.
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Old 05-24-2011, 02:27 PM   #3
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I don't know about Kobo, but B&N has their own version of Adobe DRM & if you have another reader like Sony, you will be unable to purchase B&N books & load them onto your Sony.

But if you are just starting out with a reader, then you will be fine. It only messes up those of us who already have readers other than a Nook that lose out.
Thanks for the help. I was attracted to buy one of these. I liked the nook's form factor and especially the paging buttons on the nook, and the bright screen on both offerings is something I don't want to do without.

I had a Sony PRS500 and later a PRS505 and got about 150 books for them. Some were Fictionwise multiformat books which I can read on my Kindle but I'd like to re-read some of the others and I feel cheated if I have to buy them again. It's enough to make one consider removing DRM since it's being used to force people to buy books from one store or another rather than to protect the copyright. Promoting the arts is supposed to be Congress's source of authority to grant copyrights in the US after all.

The prices they're asking for the new ereaders are attractive but I think I'll wait and see what Amazon offers before I buy an ereader just to read my old books. I have bought some books from Kobo and they worked on the Sony so the ones I got from the other bookstores will likely work on a Kobo ereader.

Thank you for your help. Sending some karma.

Last edited by 6charlong; 05-24-2011 at 02:29 PM.
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Old 05-24-2011, 02:37 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by 6charlong View Post
Thanks for the help. I was attracted to buy one of these. I liked the nook's form factor and especially the paging buttons on the nook, and the bright screen on both offerings is something I don't want to do without.

I had a Sony PRS500 and later a PRS505 and got about 150 books for them. Some were Fictionwise multiformat books which I can read on my Kindle but I'd like to re-read some of the others and I feel cheated if I have to buy them again. It's enough to make one consider removing DRM since it's being used to force people to buy books from one store or another rather than to protect the copyright. Promoting the arts is supposed to be Congress's source of authority to grant copyrights in the US after all.

The prices they're asking for the new ereaders are attractive but I think I'll wait and see what Amazon offers before I buy an ereader just to read my old books. I have bought some books from Kobo and they worked on the Sony so the ones I got from the other bookstores will likely work on a Kobo ereader.

Thank you for your help. Sending some karma.
Nook also supports the Adobe DRM, just like Sony and Kobo.
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Old 05-24-2011, 02:44 PM   #5
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Kobo,Sony,B&N,Kindle,ibooks all use DRM. some of the devices also read epub (non drm) but the DRM that Sony,Kobo,B&N use is ADE the DRM amazon is AZW (a form of mobi) and Ibooks uses thier own Fairplay DRM (itunes)

Hope that helps you
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Old 05-24-2011, 03:14 PM   #6
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Now I am confused. This isn't the first time I've heard it both ways. I went to the Barnes & Noble site but they make no mention of DRM and the Kobo site seems to be down. Neither ereader is immediately available so I have some time. This is an important issue to me. I've spent a lot more money on books than on ereaders and I do like to re-read my favorites.
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Old 05-24-2011, 03:19 PM   #7
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6charlong,

B&N uses their own DRM. (Google 'i heart cabbages' to learn more about it.) The B&N DRM can basically only be read on the B&N devices.

Kobo and Sony use Adobe DRM. B&N devices can read Adobe DRM if, say, you load the book to your Nook via the Adobe Digital Editions program.

So the practical upshot is that anything you buy on Kobo or the Sony site should work on a Nook, but anything you buy on the B&N site will only work on a Nook.

Table:

Amazon Kindle
----------------
Reads: Amazon Kindle Books

B&N Nook
-----------
Reads: Kobo Books (Adobe), Sony Books (Adobe), B&N Books (B&N DRM)

Kobo
------
Reads: Kobo Books (Adobe), Sony Books (Adobe)

This is my experience / understanding. I own a B&N nook and I've helped my mother set up her Sony 350. Hope this helps.

EDITED TO ADD: And don't feel bad for wanting to be able to read your books on your device - that's perfectly normal! Most of us have spent $$$ and don't want to rebuy books at every device change. So ask those questions!
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Old 05-24-2011, 03:24 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 6charlong View Post
Now I am confused. This isn't the first time I've heard it both ways. I went to the Barnes & Noble site but they make no mention of DRM and the Kobo site seems to be down. Neither ereader is immediately available so I have some time. This is an important issue to me. I've spent a lot more money on books than on ereaders and I do like to re-read my favorites.
B&N also uses its PDB ereader DRM sometimes called secure reader on some merchants. the ereader pdb format was supported by the nook but not the nook color

here is B&N's color nook spec's http://www.barnesandnoble.com/nookco...?cds2Pid=35607 as you see it says epub non drm as well as adobe's drm ADE

most everything you buy from B&N will have drm on it the free books wont.

hope that helps you out better
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Old 05-24-2011, 03:25 PM   #9
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B&N uses Adobe DRM, just a different encryption/key method (password based [similar to their eReader DRM] instead of ID based). I wonder if the new Kobo will support both, I know the Adobe SDK provides both methods.
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Old 05-24-2011, 03:28 PM   #10
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6charlong also you can strip the drm from the books and convert them with caliber and a few plug ins, ive converted my library to epub and mobipocket so that it can be read by my kindle and my wife reads them on her iphone with bluefire reader app
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Old 05-24-2011, 03:36 PM   #11
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Barnes & Noble have their own DRM, but they use it in tandem with the Adobe ADEPT DRM, in the Adobe renderer. It was supposed to be worked in, so other readers besides the nook would get it, but as far as I know that has yet to happen.

Kobo only supports Adobe ADEPT when it comes to DRM. This is the same as Sony, Aztak, BeBook, etc. With the exception of nook and Apple devices, if it supports DRM'ed ePub, then it supports ADEPT.

Kindle only supports Amazon's proprietary DRM, and they restrict the usage of their DRM. Any device that supports Mobi DRM, cannot support any other DRM without legal ramifications. Due to these restrictions, and others, only the Kindle supports it.

Your older ebooks from your Sony devices are very unlikely to be used on your kindle, ever (there have been rumors, but they're just that, and even if they come true it will not be any time soon). The books from your Kindle, are also unlikely to ever be used on anything but a kindle. Blame Amazon on that one.

iBooks is restricted to iPod touch, iPhone, and iPad devices. iBooks uses epub, BUT it has yet another proprietary DRM. No one outside of Apple is able to use it.

Most companies don't talk about DRM much. Some people are too technologically ignorant to understand what it is, and it upsets others, so they try to gloss over it. For instance you can buy DRM free books from Amazon, if in the description it says it allows for unlimited simultaneous usage. Many other places don't show anything at all to give you a hint.

Smashwords, O'Reilly, and I believe Baen all sell DRM free epubs. However, becareful, because books from those companies sold elsewhere may have DRM added by the retailer. This is extremely common on Smashwords books, where even the free books get DRM slapped on by third party retailers. If you're interested in something from them, it is best to go directly to the source.

As far as stripping the DRM, that is always an option, but be warned, you will not get any support here for that. It is illegal in many areas (such as the US, due to the Digital Millenium Copyright Act [DMCA]), and due to that, it is a forbidden topic.

Last edited by Hellmark; 05-24-2011 at 03:38 PM.
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Old 05-24-2011, 03:49 PM   #12
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The Kindle certainly is not limited to books bought from Amazon; it will read any DRM-free Mobipocket-format book.
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Old 05-24-2011, 04:00 PM   #13
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The Kindle certainly is not limited to books bought from Amazon; it will read any DRM-free Mobipocket-format book.
Yes, but this thread is about DRM'd books and what devices can read what.

Non-DRM'd books can generally be read on just about anything with Calibre conversion.
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Old 05-24-2011, 04:07 PM   #14
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Yes, but this thread is about DRM'd books and what devices can read what.
The original poster claimed that "the Kindle is limited to reading books that you buy from the Amazon bookstore"; that is simply untrue.
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Old 05-24-2011, 04:25 PM   #15
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It seems odd that B&N would hobble their book store like this. I had a vague memory that I needed to never buy books from B&N but I'd forgotten the reason. It seems counter-intuitive for B&N to allow nook owners can buy books from B&N's competitors but prevent owners of other devices from buying books from B&N.

Thanks to all of you. I may have known all this at one time but frankly, it seems unnecessarily confusing. It seems like the publishers ought to get together and insist on some standardization. It must harm them as well as us readers.

Thanks again.
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