Agreed. How is it that a printed hardcover of the same book is only $1 more? I know it's got to be because the demand will likely be very high so they can charge that price, but I'm hoping it'll drop, and I'll be more likely to grab a copy.
I agree about the Kindle prices. I'm braced all the time now for the recurring apologia---"Price set by the publisher..." Amazon, if you're interested in this marketing tip, I would buy a lot more books on Kindle if they were, for instance, $6.99. And I have done so, over and over, even though I never intended to ! : (
Amazon has no say over the prices, they have tried to get the publishers to drop the price but the problem is is that the Kindle versions were cutting into the higher margins of the hard covers and the publishers and possibly the authors as well didn't want that as they thought, correctly or not, that they were losing money on the lower cost Kindle versions.
I think that the kindle versions of books that were "Cheap" were older books and publishers dumping an catalog for the ebooks. The price to print a hard copy of a book is minimal. You can "micro print (aka on demand) a book of this size for $8 - the publishers can do it for $1-$2 if that. I don't think anyone is intentionally profiting off his death, he asked for this book to be published. Things cost money. That's just the fact of life.
As a consumer, I'd like Kindle books to be $9.99 or below, but I do recognize a few things: (1) the price of the physical hardcover book is low. Amazon sets its prices on major items to barely make a profit, whereas brick-and-mortar shops have always had to make a greater margin to pay the costs of running each location. In some cases, Amazon has been willing to take a loss on popular items because it drives greater volume overall. (2) Amazon is probably charging the publisher around 30% to carry its book on Kindle. This is a typical "agency" model that Amazon uses where publishers set the price and pay a fee for being on the Kindle platform.
Based on my estimates, the publisher is making $12 on the Kindle version and $16 wholesale on the hardcover version. (This is based on my experience in the content industry; I don't know how this specific contract works, but I'm guessing I'm fairly close to the right answer.)
I think your figures are very close to reality. The biggest difference is that Amazon is making $2 on the paper book and $5 on the ebook. However, they would rather sell more ebooks at a lesser price to gain a broader share of the market. It is the publishers who are preventing them from setting their own price and selling the ebook for a $1 or $2 profit (or even at a loss if Amazon thought it would act as a loss leader to gain future market share).
$16 wholesale on the hardback and $12 wholesale on the ebook sounds like reasonable prices to me. I just wish the publishers would let Amazon set their own price on the ebook.
let me try again. This is what I'm replying to: Posted on Oct 24, 2011 6:08:52 AM PDT Alan Yong says: I thnk it's just blatant profiteering from Steve's death. It's disgusting and I will not read this biography. We should all protest from this outrage and let the book dive.
Funny I think it's costing them in the long run. I would have gladly paid $9.99 for the kindle version, I'd be reading it now. Instead I'll wait until the hard copy shows up used or at BJ's. Of course many people will choose just to download it via torrent and read it right away. Either way I think the publisher is shooting themselves in the foot. I'm not going to buy a electronic version that costs nothing to distribute when the paper version is 0.89 more.
Apple, Amazon and the Publishers are responsible for the increase in Kindle book pricing. I thought $9.99 to be robbery for an e-book and will certainly not buy any e-books that are priced higher than that. Speak with your $$ people and boycott any author, publisher and book priced over $9.99.
Stating that a physical book only costs $1-$2 more than an ebook only considers the printing costs, but it doesn't consider storage and shipping. An e-book has very very minimal storage costs; physical books have a much greater storage cost. Just in time printing still requires delivery of physical components to the factory: paper, ink, binding, machines, etc.
When you factor in all the other costs than simply printing, the price difference for a physical book and an electronic book is quite significant. Those savings, unfortunately, are not being passed on to customers. One reason why is that publishers may find that profitability of books overall is down, as fewer people are buying print media. These publishers may be subsidizing their decreased profitability in print media by ramping up the costs on ebooks. In the alternative, publishers may just like exploiting the fact that you, the consumer, have limited options to purchase their content and any media dealing with Steve Jobs will likely sell itself, regardless of the higher pricing.
"In the alternative, publishers may just like exploiting the fact that you, the consumer, have limited options to purchase their content and any media dealing with Steve Jobs will likely sell itself, regardless of the higher pricing."
The single most important option remains; the option not to buy the book at all if the price is unacceptable, regardless of how the price is derived. I can tell you that no matter how little profit is being made (even to the point of the manufacturer taking a loss), no matter how much of the price represents production costs, I'll never buy a brand new Ferrari.
It is NOT Kindle. Look at Kindle's publishing prices. Up to close to ten dollars you get somewhere around 60 or 70%. Anything above you only get half that. It is the greedy publishers trying to charge the same amount and keep the costs for storage, printing and shipping for profit. Note that Kindle often puts a note that the Publisher set the price on the book. Amazon is trying to keep the books between $1.99 and $9.95 which would be reasonable and the author would get much more for their work. The old print publishers need to change their style or they will go the way of the horse and buggy as competition eats them for lunch before they realize it.Steve Jobs
I am getting ready to return to paper books. I bought my Kindle because the price was less so I would be saving the printing of so many books. Also, I liked the option to have the book read to me. Now the price of the Kindle versions are as high as a printed copy and most books don't come with a text to speech option. Instead they are asking us to buy or spend more money to use the option we had available to us for years. I feel they have suckered us. Price the books low and have options the people like then slowly raise prices and make the people pay for the same options they had for free before. It is getting expensive to use my Kindle.