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Old 10-15-2011, 02:12 PM   #1
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Fictionwise/Ereader pdb files on iOS

For now (and maybe forever), Stanza doesn't work with iOS 5. I love Stanza for many reasons, but one of which is that it works with the Fictionwise/eReader .pdb file format.

What app do I need to switch too that can still read the Fictionwise/eReader drm?

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Old 10-15-2011, 04:05 PM   #2
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The eReader format is, at best, withering on the vine. So I suggest you consider stripping the DRM and converting to another format, perhaps ePub or MOBI. This is probably legal in the US for personal use of ebooks you bought, and in any case who would know you are doing it.

Calibre can do the conversion once DRM-free, and there are 3rd party plugins for Calibre that strip DRM. See Apprentice Alfs Blog for everything DRM related.
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Old 10-15-2011, 10:39 PM   #3
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No luck with the Calibre pluggins so far. I've written to Amazon asking if/when they will update Stanza, or conversely, if they will transfer my purchased content into Kindle format.

I figure Amazon should do one or the other. Amazon owns both Fictionwize and Stanza.

Folks should keep in mind that Stanza didn't appear for the iPad right away...and the usual "they are letting Stanza die" threads were written back then.

As long as Fictionwise is in business selling eReader format material, I would expect Amazon will keep Stanza alive.

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Old 10-16-2011, 01:09 AM   #4
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Um, Amazon doesn't own Fictionwise. Barnes and Noble do. They bought it:

1. to strangle a very successful competitor
2. for the eReader format (originally Peanut Press in the 90s), which they now use on their proprietary Nook.

Worryingly, the eReader app has disappeared from the iTunes Store. What other program can we use to read Fictionwise DRM'd pdb ebooks legally? Or will this be another format deliberately withheld from iOS, like Mobipocket DRM?

I lost hundreds of purchased Mobi DRM ebooks when Amazon decided not to license the format for iOS. I switched to eReader, because it was available and had major retailers behind it (Fictionwise, eReader). I'm really unhappy at the likelihood that I will lose even more hundreds of eReader DRM ebooks, some of them titles I repurchased when I could no longer access my purchased Mobi ebooks.

I don't even know if Nooks handle Fictionwise PDBs, since B&N refuse to sell to Australians. The app isn't even available to us.
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Old 10-16-2011, 05:23 PM   #5
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Doh!, I'm an idiot

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Old 10-18-2011, 11:50 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Clytie View Post
Um, Amazon doesn't own Fictionwise. Barnes and Noble do. They bought it:

1. to strangle a very successful competitor
2. for the eReader format (originally Peanut Press in the 90s), which they now use on their proprietary Nook.
They used it briefly on the original Nook, if you had a Mac. If you had a Windows machine, it used ePub, and a few months ago they updated their site so Macs download the ePubs too.

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I don't even know if Nooks handle Fictionwise PDBs, since B&N refuse to sell to Australians. The app isn't even available to us.
Nook 1 does. Nook Color, Nook Touch, and the Nook apps don't.
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Old 10-18-2011, 02:48 PM   #7
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What are people using as a replacement for Stanza? This is really going to hit my ereading hard!

Does eReader still work under OS 5?
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Old 10-18-2011, 08:13 PM   #8
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What are people using as a replacement for Stanza? This is really going to hit my ereading hard!

Does eReader still work under OS 5?
I liberated my eReader files, and then used Calibre to turn them into epub's. I'll use iBooks to read them now...it's been my favorite reading app anyway.

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Old 10-21-2011, 01:19 PM   #9
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Lee, iBooks doesn't have night themes, though, does it?
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Old 10-21-2011, 07:17 PM   #10
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Lee, iBooks doesn't have night themes, though, does it?
No night themes and no way to get rid of the bookish look which I hate. However if you use sepia and turn the brightness way down, its not so bad. I still keep hoping Stanza will reappear, bugfixed.
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Old 10-21-2011, 11:16 PM   #11
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Lee, iBooks doesn't have night themes, though, does it?
No night theme, but I can put the iPad itself in reverse mode....but I just go with the iPad dimmed all the way down. Personally, I like the efforts to make it appear as a book.

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Old 10-22-2011, 01:07 PM   #12
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Tried iBooks last night... alas, sepia is too bright and when one turns down the brightness enough, then the text isn't readable. I realize that this is highly dependent upon the individual reader... wish it had a night mode/night themes. That's a deal breaker for me.
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Old 10-22-2011, 02:59 PM   #13
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Tried iBooks last night... alas, sepia is too bright and when one turns down the brightness enough, then the text isn't readable. I realize that this is highly dependent upon the individual reader... wish it had a night mode/night themes. That's a deal breaker for me.
Has been for me too. I would *like* to be able to use ibooks, because of the bookmarks being saved between idevices... but the lack of night mode (and other features which should be user selectable) is what kills it for me. I keep trying, each time there's an update, but I can't even see what the updates do, it all just looks the same as when it was first released, to me.

In the meantime, for me, its Bluefire on iOS and fbreader on Android.

Last edited by kyteflyer; 10-22-2011 at 03:03 PM.
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Old 11-01-2011, 11:00 PM   #14
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Does eReader still work under OS 5?
I'm still using an iPhone 3G (have to wait to December to upgrade my phone after a brief affair with Android) and was wondering the same thing. I just noticed (today) that eReader was no longer in the App Store, so I did a quick test with my son's iPod, which is upgraded to iOS 5: it works fine.

You can sideload eReader on iOS 5 assuming you still have the application file (mine is "eReader 2.1.3.ipa") and the IPA is authorized to your iTunes account.

Note that from what I could tell, eReader looked pretty horrible on a retina display; so depending on what device you have, you may want to consider a different app... I happen to convert all my ePubs to PML/eReader because I like the simplicity of the format, but I guess I'll be switching to iBooks for reading come December. Depressing. I loved the eReader app and format.

Anyway, if you have a backup of the IPA and want to try it:

1. If it's not listed your local iTunes apps, double click on the IPA file. It will be added.
2. Connect your device via USB.
3. In iTunes, navigate to your device and switch to the "Apps" tab.
4. Check eReader
5. Click the "Apply" button.

Last edited by mdb139; 11-01-2011 at 11:13 PM.
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Old 11-02-2011, 08:54 AM   #15
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mdb, thanks! I have it up and running and working nicely.

It's my substitute for Stanza. Well, used to use it and Stanza (a book open in each) and switch between the two. That works very well in iOS 4 & 5; much better than iOS 3.1.3. Very fast to get back to the other book.

So, even with eReader working, I'm still missing Stanza. Of course, I'm complaining here rather than complaining to Amazon.

And I should be complaining to Apple (well, I suppose it's Barnes & Noble) about the removal of eReader. At least they don't pluck it from our existing devices.
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