Seriously? I understand that it's intellectual property, but there has GOT to be more than 2 dollars in cost difference from the hardcover. It's disappointing both because of the fact that one of the selling points of e-books is supposed to be the cost, and I've gotten so used to reading on it, I can't bear the thought of reading a hardcover. This is from someone who used to collect books( and still do to some extent).
At this date (9/22/10), I see $14.99 for the Kindle edition, and $16.20 for the hardcover. $1.21 difference!!! That's absurd. I can't loan the Kindle edition, nor can I sell it as used book. And the publisher's costs have to be much less. The Kindle edition should be significantly less expensive than either the hardcover or the paperback. At this rate, you're limiting your market to early adopters and somewhat wealthy people who travel a lot. I'd like to buy a Kindle, but not if it will mean that I'll pay nearly the same price for the books, but get less. Get real you people!
Google "Agency System" to understand why the prices of e-books are now set by publishers and not Amazon. The retail cost for the Hardcover is $30, which Amazon is heavily discounting to $16.20 (thus cutting into their profits). The publisher is putting out the e-book at $14.99, without discounting it. Amazon does not control the price for the e-book.
I have no doubt that that is the case; I don't blame Amazon, I blame the publisher. And they think they are going to make more money, but they are not. The increased price will not be nearly enough to make up for the decrease in sales.
i just ordered a new kindle the other day. one of the reasons was to save some$. with so little price difference, you may as well get the hardcopy and have it shipped free. then you can sell it or loan it.
IMHO, there really should be a business model for e-books that includes getting the e-book for a minimal cost if you buy the hardback, like digital copy on some DVDs. Buy the physical book, get the eBook for a steal, have the best of both worlds with a book on the shelf and the convenience of the Kindle. Ebook only folks could still pay more to get it Kindle only. But even without that model, eBooks should have a bigger price difference from the "real" book. It keeps me from buying the eBook - if the price is that close, I might as well have the book as part of my library.
Sam - Kindle books can contain pictures, though they are in black and white and sometimes their quality is very bad (such is the case with the new Fantasy novel by Brian Sanderson). The Kindle works best as a text device.
So back to the original point, it isn't that the publisher is overcharging for the ebook (in their mind at least), it is that Amazon is undercharging for the hardcover. Why should the publisher get into a price war with Amazon over their own product? Amazon could sell books at a loss to bring people to the site, then make up the difference elsewhere. A publisher doesn't have that luxury.
The price of Kindle books seems to always be close to the hardcover book nowadays. But for us living in Europe it is still a bargain. Before the Kindle I had to pay international shipping rates which are 2 to 3 times stateside rates and here in Italy I always had to pay 7 Euros ($9.50) customs tax for each box from Amazon.
Lot's of good thoughts! I especially like the idea from D. Dorton about having eBooks similar to the digital copy of a DVD. Blurays now come often with a digital copy AND a regular DVD. I get everyone saying they will go to the Hardcover or paperback, it's just that, for me at least, reading on the Kindle is so much more convenient, comfortable, etc. I can even read using my phone if I'm stuck somewhere. Hopefully, over time, the financials will show that the companies stand to make more money with lower prices for the Kindle editions. However, if they see they make more by keeping the prices up, I can't blame them. In the end, it comes down to, what's the book worth to each reader. Right now, I'd have to REALLY want to read a book to pay 15 bucks for an eBook, which is cutting off my nose, etc. I'll probably get over it. Eventually. Maybe.
I am disappointed in the increase in price. The advantage is that I read more because of anytime that I am waiting I can read on my blackberry. The kindle fits perfectly into my purse and that is better than carrying a 500 page book when I am traveling. Also, I don't buy a book until I am ready to read that book. In the past I would buy new releases and then they would be on a shelf for months before I would read them. There is no hurry to buy because when I am ready to read-- it can be there in seconds. I view Amazon as my library and I can leave it on the shelf until I am ready to read. ( I do love reading a newspaper on the kindle and not having the paper mess.) Hopefully the publishers will realize that sales would increase with lower prices and then I might purchase books sooner that leave them on the selves at Amazon.
I think Apple had a lot to do with these price increases when they negotiated with publishers at the release of the IPad.
I agree with many of the comments above--total rip off to pay so much for a digital copy that can not be sold, lent, or displayed. If the book was 9.99 I would be hitting the buy button. Won't do it at 14.99. Just not worth it. The publisher could have made some money, but with their greed they aren't getting any from me.
Yes, you cannot sell, lend or archive in your home library. And pictures are not very clear. Valid points for not having a Kindle. But I travel a lot and like to read 3 or 4 books at the same time. The Kindle is a godsend with all the weight restrictions on air travel nowadays.
Now the Kindle and the hard cover price are the same. This is crazy! I ordered the hardcover earlier rather than the Kindle when there was just a two dollar differential for two reasons. First, I don't pay more than 9.99 for a Kindle book and haven't since the prices went up except for one mistake when I got my new Kindle. Second, I want to pass around this book and have it end up in the library. With all the city funding cuts, the library is getting less and less money for new books. I want them to have this one so people don't have to wait and wait!
I agree with all the discussions- I am a new Kindle owner..thinking it would be less costly ordering books on it..to find this book in particular almost the same price as the book..I can tell you I am truly disappointed...for a buck more I can have the hard copy...what is wrong with this picture?? my intentions were good...was told the kindle books are more reasonable...and really aren't?? how sad..another rip off.
I agree. I can have a larger book library on Kindle rather than using up space in my house with hard cover books. When the price of a Kindle book is too high, in my opinion, I go to the public library. I especially use the library for books I don't want to keep. I read the Washington Post on my Kindle, so I don't have to drag the hard copy newspaper to the recycle bin every week.
I was disappointed at the $12.99 cost of Kindle editions. Now tonight, as I was looking up a couple of my favorite authors to see what they would be releasing soon, I was shocked and dismayed to see that the cost has jumped to $14.99. As others have noted, it's incongruous to pay that for a book that you can neither loan nor sell. There is little to no cost in transporting or manufacturing the environmentally friendly e-book. I'm at a loss to understand this and disappointed that, now that I have paid almost $200 for a Kindle (more if you count the protective cover and other add-ons), I cannot justify the cost of ordering books for it. I've always been a fan of the public library and guess they'll be seeing more of me in the future. If I choose to forego the convenience of my Kindle and purchase a book at least I can donate it to the library when I'm finished reading it. I'm quickly coming to think of my Kindle excursion as one big rip-off.