Saturday, December 8, 2007

Why are eBooks overpriced?

I was intrigued by a review of the book Programming the universe in the New York Times. I decided I would like to read it over the christmas vacations on my notebook. The paperback version is going for about $17 at Amazon. The eBook version (pdf)? $17. Just at the same price.
I'm taking more time to think about it. I'd buy the eBook if it were going for the same price as a movie ticket - $9.95 or half the price of the paperback version, I'd say. After all I'd read it on my computer - eBooks do not come printed on paper! Now I understand why eBooks haven't caught up. There are plenty of nice eBooks devices around now - Amazon's Kindle to name a very recent one. But publishers are not comfortable with this new field. We the readers have yet to wait for someone like Apple who started to sell legal music for 99 cents.
Well I've made up my mind. I'll borrow the book at the public library and will go see the movie Enchanted with the money I didn't spent on it. Sigh. I really like being able to read books on my computer and browse them at will - today or years later. When will eBooks be half the price of a paperback version? Or the price of a movie ticket?

Wait a moment. Should I ask Santa for a $399 Kindle this christmas? Mike just pointed to me that Amazon sells a Kindle version of "Programming the Universe" for about $8. That sounds great. Can I get a PDF version for my laptop for that price someday too?

No comments: