E-book services come and go. With the current state of the economy, even some of the biggest publishers and services are struggling to survive in the market. Scribd has just heavily reduced its e-book service. Oyster, at one point an industry giant, has just announced its complete closure.
For self-publishers, these e-book platforms are a saving grace for distribution, so committing to a service only to find that it’s gone under can be extremely frustrating! Fortunately, we’ve compiled a list of services you can rely on to stay open this year and many more years to come.
Amazon’s Kindle Unlimited
As one of the most well-known e-book stores worldwide and a leader in e-reader technology, this giant in media distribution definitely isn’t going anywhere soon. It was one of the original trailblazers of the e-book movement, with its initial launch taking place in 2007. Since then, it’s released numerous devices, led the way in introducing smart technology to the e-reader platform, enjoyed numerous years of commercial success and constantly provided a comprehensive collection of books.
Amazon is also acclaimed for its self-publishing services. It allows authors from all over the world to share their work by allowing them to upload it onto the Kindle Store in a wide range of formats. Check out the Amazon site for more information on this.
The Kindle led the way in convenient reading by syncing the device directly with the store and allowing you to use WiFi to purchase books when travelling. While it remains a leader in the industry to this day, this seemingly harmless feature has almost been its downfall. The company has had its fair share of hacking scandals and still has significant risks, so if you’re a Kindle Fire user, it’s wise to use a VPN in order to stay safe.
It seems like Google is taking over the world, and their reach seems unstoppable. They even going into space exploration! In spite of grand ambitions, fans of their e-book service will be pleased to know that the store is still looking to enjoy a long and fruitful existence.
Unlike most of its competitors, who require you to buy a device or pay a monthly fee for unlimited access, the Google Books store can be searched by anyone. Purchases can be easily made by simply linking a PayPal account. There’s also a “Google Play Books” app, which is available on most platforms and allows you to browse and purchase e-books for free. It’s also easy to publish your book and have it hosted, so it’s a great to know the service will continue to stick around in the future.
When it comes to commercial success, Apple is definitely a company that can be depended on. Their 2010 move into e-books received mixed reviews, but has held up strong and looks to continue offering the service for a long time to come.
Its self-publishing feature, iBooks Author, has been a massive success with many new writers. You can apply to have your work released on the iBooks store by filling in an application and downloading iTunes producer. Alternatively, you can publish directly via iTunes Connect. All information on this can be found by signing up here. You can even put them up for free, which is a great feature for developing writers looking to test the water.
Some people resent the fact the software and purchased books can only be accessed through an Apple device. As the company continues to tweak the format it supports to be increasingly exclusive, it seems like a small drawback for an otherwise completely legitimate service. Users can also view their own PDFs via the app. This means they still have the freedom to read books from other sources.
B&N Nook Store
Two massive companies in the industry have come together to create a service that has flourished since its conception 5 years ago. Retail giant Barnes & Noble, paired up with famed software developers Amazon, have created their very own brand of e-reader. Originally available only for American readers, 2012 saw the company secure partnerships with retailers in the UK, making the company a true contender in the international e-book market.
Subscribers to this service can enjoy extra benefits such as being able to read for one hour each day without charge in any B&N store. Similarly, there is now free reading app, available on most mobile platforms, which allows users to read one chapter a day. This project is called “Readouts.”
With two industry front-runners in charge of the development and distribution, you can rest assured your Nook will continue to provide readers with quality books for a long time to come.
These four services have been leading names in the e-book subscription world since their creation. Even though they have changed in format, and developed as companies, they continue to be dependable services for book lovers and authors alike! Check them out now for access to fantastic resources that are sure to be sticking around for years to come.
Are there any other services that you think will do especially well in the future? What do you think makes a stable service? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.