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Old 12-15-2009, 11:15 AM   #1
onewayherway
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kobobooks.com review

Just checked out shortcovers new name and site called kobobooks.com.
It is an improvement for browsing books. There are now sections like mystery, romance etc.
There is now a link to free books but all the free books appear to be web based or mobile. Not for ereaders. This is not an improvement to those who use ereaders. I can get the same books at manybooks, feedbooks, gutenberg all in epub format.
I am enjoying the 24 days of deals though and trying new authors because of it.
So out of 5 I would give kobobooks.com a 3. Meets my book purchasing needs but the fuss about the freebooks is not such a big deal.
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Old 12-15-2009, 11:43 AM   #2
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I dislike the new name. There is a cellphone brand here called Koodo which sounds very similar. I think the name is silly. And I still would like someone to answer my question about wish lists. I posted it here and in an IM to the guy from Shortcovers who posts here and they have all ignored me.
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Old 12-15-2009, 11:52 AM   #3
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Just got this email today. The website is better, but very similar. I, too, dislike the new name. It seemingly has nothing to do with books and is just more pointless web 2.0 gibberish.
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Old 12-15-2009, 12:00 PM   #4
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kobo is just book re-arranged which sort of makes their new name bookbooks.com
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Old 12-15-2009, 12:11 PM   #5
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Thanks for the review of our new site!

We are loading 1.8M titles from the Internet Archive into our system right now, all of which will be available for download in ePub and/or PDF (depending on the title). That should help with your free book addiction

Jordan Christensen
Product Manager, Kobo

Quote:
Originally Posted by onewayherway View Post
Just checked out shortcovers new name and site called kobobooks.com.
It is an improvement for browsing books. There are now sections like mystery, romance etc.
There is now a link to free books but all the free books appear to be web based or mobile. Not for ereaders. This is not an improvement to those who use ereaders. I can get the same books at manybooks, feedbooks, gutenberg all in epub format.
I am enjoying the 24 days of deals though and trying new authors because of it.
So out of 5 I would give kobobooks.com a 3. Meets my book purchasing needs but the fuss about the freebooks is not such a big deal.
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Old 12-15-2009, 12:12 PM   #6
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LOL, I just came back to post that Kobo is "Book." Still kind of stupid, but at least it DOES mean something.
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Old 12-15-2009, 12:13 PM   #7
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Sorry for the delay getting back to you ficbot - we've been swamped with switching to the new site. I replied to your PM, but consider emailing help@kobobooks.com if you want a faster reply.

Yours,
Jordan Christensen
Product Manager, kobo

Quote:
Originally Posted by ficbot View Post
I dislike the new name. There is a cellphone brand here called Koodo which sounds very similar. I think the name is silly. And I still would like someone to answer my question about wish lists. I posted it here and in an IM to the guy from Shortcovers who posts here and they have all ignored me.
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Old 12-15-2009, 12:17 PM   #8
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I see usability issues with their new name.

They don't own http://kobo.com, and their branding focuses only on 'Kobo', not on 'Kobo Books' - so I see a lot of people typing kobo.com into their address bars to get to their book store.

The same issue exists with search - a lot of people navigate to a website using Google, and they are going to type in Kobo ('Kobo Books' is longer to type) but Kobo Books won't be the top search result.

Why make it harder for people to find you? Shortcovers was a unique, easy-to-remember name. Longer to type, but hard to get wrong.
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Old 12-15-2009, 12:34 PM   #9
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I expect we'll be the top search result for Kobo pretty soon - takes a little while for Google to propagate our search ranking over from Shortcovers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by anurag View Post
I see usability issues with their new name.

They don't own http://kobo.com, and their branding focuses only on 'Kobo', not on 'Kobo Books' - so I see a lot of people typing kobo.com into their address bars to get to their book store.

The same issue exists with search - a lot of people navigate to a website using Google, and they are going to type in Kobo ('Kobo Books' is longer to type) but Kobo Books won't be the top search result.

Why make it harder for people to find you? Shortcovers was a unique, easy-to-remember name. Longer to type, but hard to get wrong.
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Old 12-15-2009, 12:42 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JCShortcovers View Post
I expect we'll be the top search result for Kobo pretty soon - takes a little while for Google to propagate our search ranking over from Shortcovers.
I'm sure you're trying already, but you should probably purchase http://kobo.com as well, even if it costs you significantly more than $9.99

But as far as the new website is concerned, I like the new design and content. The category lists are nice, and I like that you now display more info (including the available formats) on the result list pages - major usability improvement.

Last edited by anurag; 12-15-2009 at 12:45 PM.
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Old 12-15-2009, 04:39 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anurag View Post
But as far as the new website is concerned, I like the new design and content. The category lists are nice, and I like that you now display more info (including the available formats) on the result list pages - major usability improvement.
Thanks - hopefully the new structure will help you crawl us easier as well!
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Old 12-15-2009, 04:48 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by onewayherway View Post
Just checked out shortcovers new name and site called kobobooks.com.
It is an improvement for browsing books. There are now sections like mystery, romance etc.
There is now a link to free books but all the free books appear to be web based or mobile. Not for ereaders.
The first one I spotted says it's available in epub--but wants me to download ADE. Sigh. And maybe requires a kobo registration, but I suppose I should expect that, even for free ebooks.
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Old 12-15-2009, 05:04 PM   #13
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The FAQ has some problems.

"In order to read an eBook using Adobe ® Digital Editions, it must be an ePub."
Or a PDF. If you don't carry PDFs, that's fine (great, in fact), but I don't like false info in FAQs. Could be edited to , "In order to read an eBook from kobobookscom using ADE..."

"Our Gutenberg titles can be printed out using ADE. Other eBooks which are DRM-protected cannot be printed at this time."
I know what DRM is. Other readers may not. It's a good idea to define the terms in your FAQs.

A mention that the non-Gutenberg books on your site are all DRM'd would be nice; that'd let me know not to bother with the place. ADE is currently unavailable to me, and I'm not sure I want to bother having any DRM software on the shiny new computer.

From the About eBooks page: "eBooks come in a variety of formats, though most commonly they are found as PDFs or as ePubs."
What formats *do you carry*. Unless you're going to discuss the abstract concept of ebooks in PDF, ePub, Mobi, Lit, pdb, and so on... just say what formats are available through Kobobooks. Mention which of them are tied to specific devices.

Anyone who knows what a file format is, wants more info than "ebooks are commonly PDF or ePub."
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Old 12-15-2009, 05:20 PM   #14
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Thanks Elfwreck - I'll see what I can do to get our FAQ clarified.
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Old 12-15-2009, 05:41 PM   #15
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I might be slow but most books says available for Web, Mobile. Why not tell me the format like other ebookstores (B&N being the exception). Is it an ePub, PDF, Lit, Mobi format?
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