May 27 2009
Random House and Penguin are creating mobile platforms for their ebooks. Of course, this means just one more DRM but who cares about that right? Joe Wickert noted on twitter an article that announced Random House had launched its own iPhone App.
Most significant of all for Random House is the launch, today, of its own app. Download it to your iPhone or iPod and any book from the Random House e-book list can be yours. The app allows you to customise the size of the text and the colour of the text, the font, the look, the feel of the electronic page. It’s reading all right, but not as we know it. With 2,500 Random House titles available by the end of the year, many with ‘rich’ content, these steroidal ‘super-books’ are making a serious play for literary attention and our cash.
This is great, but the fact is I can’t find the app anywhere in the iPhone store. Neither can Joe Wickert.
Bookseller.com reported Penguin has partnered with Mobcast, the operators of mobile platform Gospoken.com. GoSpoken has relationships with Vodafone, 3UK, and Orange. There is also a Blackberry App. No Iphone or Android App yet. The format is said to be “epub” but after calling GoSpoken, I was informed that the epublished document is wrapped in a special format designed for the mobile platform. There is no way to download the books onto your computer and the purchases are tied to your phone number. If you change handsets, you can recapture your purchases, but you cannot transfer them yourself. GoSpoken also contains the entire Macmillan ebook catalog. An Iphone App is in the works.