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Old 05-12-2010, 12:03 AM   #1
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Border's eBook store to serve many devices (not just Kobo)

Border's announced Friday that its new eBook store will open for business in June, and that it will attempt to serve a wide variety of eBook readers (not just Kobo, of which it owns 20%).

Furthermore, "(d)espite Borders' close relationship with Kobo, which is a spin-off of Canadian bookseller Indigo Books & Music Inc, Borders will not limit itself to Kobo's device after it retrofits its stores to create display space for as many as 10 kinds of e-readers that will connect to its e-bookstore."

http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE6466C820100507

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Old 05-12-2010, 01:39 AM   #2
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But lemme guess, every last book it sells will be DRM-locked, right?

I wonder, by the way, why Borders or B&N or some independent hasn't created little kiosks with a screen and two slots: one where your credit card goes in, and one where your SD card full of ebooks comes out. For maybe 4 square feet of floor area, they could sell ebooks in physical bookstores. Think of those machines that can engrave tags for your pets, or the ones in airports that print business cards on demand. Why not one that puts ebooks on an SD card for you? More advanced models could have a choice of card types, or the option of mini-CDs, or even transfer directly to your device.

Of course, they'd still be DRM'd, and I still wouldn't buy them, but the idea would be cool.
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Old 05-12-2010, 02:21 AM   #3
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I wonder, by the way, why Borders or B&N or some independent hasn't created little kiosks with a screen and two slots: one where your credit card goes in, and one where your SD card full of ebooks comes out. For maybe 4 square feet of floor area, they could sell ebooks in physical bookstores.

<snip!>

Of course, they'd still be DRM'd, and I still wouldn't buy them, but the idea would be cool.
I'm guessing it's specifically because of the DRM. How do you make sure the protection is for the intended reader and only the intended reader?

I don't think any of the current DRM schemes allow for this...
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Old 05-12-2010, 03:14 AM   #4
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I'm guessing it's specifically because of the DRM. How do you make sure the protection is for the intended reader and only the intended reader?

I don't think any of the current DRM schemes allow for this...
Credit card number If you share the number, well,...
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Old 05-12-2010, 03:22 AM   #5
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Well, I thought about the eReader DRM - it does use the credit card number scheme - but if you put a kiosk in a store, people will likely think they can buy for friends, families, etc...they'll assume they can gift that SD card. That's where my mind was going...
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Old 05-12-2010, 05:03 AM   #6
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I'm guessing it's specifically because of the DRM. How do you make sure the protection is for the intended reader and only the intended reader?
The restriction, you mean?

DRM is restriction, not protection.

But in any event, simple: do away with the DRM. There are publishers selling DRM-free books and making money at it. If some of them would sign on to a kiosk system, it might give the big guys a reason to come to their senses.

Actually, something like this might be ideal for an authors' consortium like BookView Cafe. Imagine what a boon this would be for small independent bookstores that have limited space and capital: an ebook-selling system like that could increase their inventory enormously. And they'd have out-of-print books (i.e., authors' recovered backlists) that aren't on the shelves anywhere, especially not at the big chains. Want to buy Vonda McIntyre's "Dreamsnake"? (if you haven't, you should) You won't get it at Amazon, but you can get it at BVC. Or at the BVC kiosk.

For a small store, maybe a cheaper and slightly less automated model: you pick out your books at the kiosk (which is really just a cheap PC in a box) and it gives you an order number that you take to the checkout. You pay for that order along with your physical books, and the cashier pops the SD card (or other format of your choice, whatever they stock) into the computer behind the counter, picks your order number off the list of pending orders, and then gives you your chip full of books.

Sure, that would be slow for Border's at closing time, but for Fred's Friendly Bookstore, where there's rarely more than one person at the checkout (and that one person is usually jawing with Fred), it would be perfect.

I can seriously see that as a new model for the neighborhood bookstore, too: Along with physical shelves, they'd have some nice cozy seating for reading, maybe coffee and snacks, a display of new and used ebook readers (they'd take trade-ins) some accessories such as lights, covers, chargers, cards, etc., and then several ebook-selling kiosks. Many of them have the chairs, coffee, etc., already; it gets people to hang around the store, talk books with other people hanging around the store, and say "I'll have one of what he's reading." That's what bookstores used to be, before the giant chains. While I don't miss the painfully limited selection and equally limited hours, I do miss the friendly atmosphere and the feeling that I'm in a place where books are an essential part of life, not just another commodity to be shoveled into a bag and sent out the door, have a nice day, next!

Anyone with a lot more money and industry connections than me want to go in on this? :-p
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Old 05-12-2010, 05:06 AM   #7
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Quote:
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I'm guessing it's specifically because of the DRM. How do you make sure the protection is for the intended reader and only the intended reader?

I don't think any of the current DRM schemes allow for this...
Surely it wouldn't be that hard for Adobe/Bookstores to allow customers to input their Adobe ID/Password when they make the purchase, and then serve you a file that works on any device authorised to your account.
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Old 05-12-2010, 05:11 AM   #8
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But in any event, simple: do away with the DRM.
Sorry, I thought you asked the question "Why doesn't Borders do this kiosk thing" seriously.

They have no control over the DRM, beyond trying to get the publishers to buy into removing DRM. So I answered based on what we have today, not what we'd like to have.

I'd love to see DRM go far, far away and be just a distant unpleasant memory, but I just don't see it happening right now.
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Old 05-12-2010, 12:48 PM   #9
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Was hoping for this.

Was really disappointed when Borders announced the ebook store in partnership with Sony. That created a lot of hype at the time since a lot of people believed the ebook catalogue would increase dramatically with Borders behind it. That didn't pan out since the Borders-Sony ebook store just redirected users to the Sony ebook store.

Better late than never I guess and I'm glad they are focusing on selling ebooks instead of coming up with their own reader. Wished Amazon and B&N went this route.... selling ebooks instead of creating their own devices and thus introducing more types of DRM's and formats. Borders in my opinion should concentrate on selling books/ebooks at competitive prices and leave the hardware to someone else!

I own a Sony reader and would love to buy from Amazon and B&N but don't want to mess with stripping DRM's and format shifting. Always happy to hear of new places where I can choose to buy ebooks!
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Old 05-12-2010, 12:57 PM   #10
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They have no control over the DRM, beyond trying to get the publishers to buy into removing DRM.
Aside from the fact that we do, today, have publishers selling DRM-free ebooks (and my bank account is the poorer for it ... again ...) Borders would have a lot of leverage.

"You want to get your backlist in every Borders store? All those books that you have rights to, but aren't making you any money? And with no inventory management, no returns, nothing but cashing the checks? You can do it; the only catch is, no DRM."

I think enough publishers would go for it -- it would really only take one major one -- just to capture that in-store, point-of-sale traffic that the rest would follow along so as not to be left behind by a competitor.
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Old 05-12-2010, 03:12 PM   #11
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But lemme guess, every last book it sells will be DRM-locked, right?

I wonder, by the way, why Borders or B&N or some independent hasn't created little kiosks with a screen and two slots: one where your credit card goes in, and one where your SD card full of ebooks comes out. For maybe 4 square feet of floor area, they could sell ebooks in physical bookstores. Think of those machines that can engrave tags for your pets, or the ones in airports that print business cards on demand. Why not one that puts ebooks on an SD card for you? More advanced models could have a choice of card types, or the option of mini-CDs, or even transfer directly to your device.

Of course, they'd still be DRM'd, and I still wouldn't buy them, but the idea would be cool.
That's a fantastic idea.
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Old 05-14-2010, 06:58 AM   #12
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A neat idea; first of all you browse the paper sections, flick through a few pages of interesting looking books - and they you go and buy the e-version .....
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Old 05-14-2010, 01:37 PM   #13
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My question is will they require you to download software specific to their store or will ADE be enough. I do not buy ebooks from stores that make me download more extraneous software to my computer.
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Old 05-18-2010, 12:42 PM   #14
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Well June is around the corner. Hopefully we'll get more information regarding their ebook store soon!
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Old 05-18-2010, 12:53 PM   #15
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which corner ?
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