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Old 04-20-2008, 09:47 AM   #1
reeder
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Questions about Sony Ebook Store

I'm new to this. If you want to buy ebooks from the Sony Connect store, do you:

1) Have to use the horrible Sony Library software that came with the PRS 505 in order to purchase and download the ebooks to the Reader? Or can I bypass it? Can I just download the ebooks to my desktop and then transfer it myself after making customizations to it?

2) Do you need a credit card to make an account at Sony to buy ebooks?

3) If I have a gift card for credit to the Sony Ebook Store, do I still need to make an account and send off personal info over the net to Sony?


Thanks for the help.
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Old 04-20-2008, 11:02 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by reeder View Post
I'm new to this. If you want to buy ebooks from the Sony Connect store, do you:

1) Have to use the horrible Sony Library software that came with the PRS 505 in order to purchase and download the ebooks to the Reader? Or can I bypass it? Can I just download the ebooks to my desktop and then transfer it myself after making customizations to it?
Yes, you must use the Sony software. Remember that all the current books Sony sells have DRM (Digital Rights Management.) The purchase and download are all through their software exclusively.

Quote:
Originally Posted by reeder View Post
2) Do you need a credit card to make an account at Sony to buy ebooks?
No. Many people have just used Sony eBook Gift Cards to buy books.

Quote:
Originally Posted by reeder View Post
3) If I have a gift card for credit to the Sony Ebook Store, do I still need to make an account and send off personal info over the net to Sony?
Yes. The DRM books are registered to one account (yours) that contains at least one PC and one Reader. I have heard that many of the people who have Sony Readers and live outside of the US have entered US addresses (Wrigley Field for example) however they did enter a valid email address through GMail or the like.

Also there are other sources of books that do not involve the Sony eBook Store or their software. Fictionwise offers Sony format books (some titles are ready for loading on the Sony Reader while others will need to be converted prior to loading), Baen supports the Reader format, and as I remember http://Steve Jordan Books was the first publisher to offer Sony format books. (All with no DRM.)

I hope this helps.
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Old 04-20-2008, 11:19 PM   #3
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Thanks for the detailed reply RWood. It is very helpful to a newbie like me. I heard people post about Sony ebooks from their store having format errors, typos and other undesired effects. Is this a frequent thing with all their ebooks? Is it unique to just them, or is that "normal" as far as digital books purchased online go?
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Old 04-20-2008, 11:45 PM   #4
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It is not "normal" for a book (or an ebook) to have errors. It happens and it happens to frequently. It is more common in ebooks than pbooks as ebook production is often the poor step child of the publishing industry.

Yes there are errors and format problems. Many publishers still put a lot of white space around the page as they would a pbook. There are times where the photographs or drawings do not show up well in an ebook that worked very well in the pbook. There are some people that will never be happy with any format other than their own for an ebook. Others are just happy to get the book at all. I have not found that the error/problem rate in ebooks to be any worse that it is in pbooks.

eBooks are a disruptive technology that the publishers have yet to adapt to. They ignore it at their own risk.
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Old 04-21-2008, 04:43 AM   #5
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I'd say about 30% of the ebooks I get, from anyone (Sony, Amazon, etc etc) have some errors.

I think a lot use automatic processes and don't even bother to look through the work once before sending it off - some of the errors are just phenomenal.
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Old 04-21-2008, 06:38 AM   #6
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I have also been finding an increasing number of errors in printed paperbacks also. I don't find any more misprints in the ebooks I have purchased than I find in the print books I purchase.
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Old 04-21-2008, 08:56 AM   #7
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I've finally figured out the difference between browsing the Sony eBook Store via your web browser and eBook Library. Your web browser displays things as they are loading so it seems faster. What eBook Library doe sis render the entire page and then display it. So you have to wait till it's all rendered before you see the page. That is the difference.
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Old 04-23-2008, 11:48 AM   #8
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I would just like to ADD, check prices before you buy!

Many time Sony ebooks are MORE expensive than Amazon.com "real books".

They says 15% off the print addition but Amazon.com might be giving 25% off the print edition. So always look before you buy.

And when ever I see that I send a nasty e-mail to sony store, it does't do any good but it makes me feel better.
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Old 04-24-2008, 05:28 PM   #9
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Wow. The Sony ebooks display at a very small print on the 505.
This is a case where I wish they'd let the buyers of the books conditionally disable the DRM once its on their device so they can customize their own print sizes to suit their eyes. Or at least disbale the part of the DRM that prevents changing the print sizes of the letters. This is pretty ridiculous as I paid for something and can't even read it comfortably.
They should have "Large Print Editions" of their ebooks since the size they come in isn't big enough for some readers.
Is this the same deal at other ebook stores like Fictionwise, ebookmall and other places? If so, I'm taking my business elsewhere.

Last edited by reeder; 04-24-2008 at 05:30 PM.
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Old 04-24-2008, 07:59 PM   #10
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What do you have your print size set on? I have the 500 and I usually read with it set on medium. Actually I prefer the size of the 'large' setting, but I save that for when I can't find my reading glasses!
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Old 04-24-2008, 08:43 PM   #11
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Largest font size. Even tried the landscape mode thingy. Bit better but not good enough.
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Old 04-24-2008, 08:45 PM   #12
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I find that some of the Sony books have a rather small font, even when I read on large.
Also they come with wide margins, which leaves a lot of white space on the page, so that there are more page turns and the battery is exhausted faster than with the books I make myself.
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Old 04-24-2008, 11:20 PM   #13
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I'm new, too, and don't live in the US. Can I just get a gift card (like prepaid from Borders) and then buy books at the Sony store?
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Old 04-26-2008, 02:02 AM   #14
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I emailed the Sony Connect Store customer service like 5 times over the past few days since I purchased ebooks from them regarding the small font issue and I really appreciate their total apathy and putting me on ignore. (Sarcasm - hello!)

I will not be giving them anymore of my business from this point on. Great going, Sony. You blew it again.
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Old 04-26-2008, 12:11 PM   #15
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Quote:
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I have also been finding an increasing number of errors in printed paperbacks also. I don't find any more misprints in the ebooks I have purchased than I find in the print books I purchase.
The publishing industry has cut back significantly on the amount of money it is willing to spend on the ditorial process. in the olden days, presses took a great deal of pride in the quality of the editorial work. Today, they hire the least expensive editors they can find and impose much too short schedules because what matters is the quarterly dividend to shareholders.

I recently purchased an expensive nonfiction book from a well-known university press and am appalled at how poorly edited it is. The editing is so bad that it is difficult to follow. But this just follows the trend in publishing -- errors are acceptable because the buying public buys the books with or without them.
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