Potter on a reader
After many delays, you can now buy Harry Potter books for your e-reader. The J.K. Rowling-run Harry Potter site Pottermore.com began selling the digital versions yesterday. Even though the site claims to be in a beta version and won’t accept new members until next month, the Pottermore shop is open for business and will indeed take your cash. Prices range from $7.99 – 9.99 per book, or you can buy the whole series at a 10% discount ($57.54), and the files are compatible with “all leading eReaders.”. Audio versions are also available.
By selling the e-books on her own site, Ms. Rowling will keep most of the revenue, rather than sharing much of it with her publishers as is usually the case. On Tuesday afternoon, consumers were able to buy Harry Potter digital books via links on bookstores operated by Sony Corp., Amazon.comInc., and Barnes & Noble Inc. The digital editions download directly onto the Sony Reader, Kindle and Nook from the Pottermore site. The retailers will get a cut of the sales.
Noticeably absent from that list of alternate sellers is Apple, which probably wants to take its usual 30% off the top of Rowling’s profits. If you want to read one of the books on an iDevice, you can. You just have to use a third party app to do it.
It seems as though Amazon may have overextended itself during Tuesday’s Potter launch. U.S. customers browsing the Kindle book store for ANY book were greeted with a series of buttons that read, “This title is not available for customers from: United States.” The option to actually purchase a book is back online now, but I can’t help but wonder how much cash Amazon lost in those first few hours after the Potter series was on sale.