The Future of the Ebook

Macmillian Finally Gives In to Ebook Subscription Services Oyster and Scribd

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About a month ago, John Sargent, CEO of Macmillan Publishers, complained in a blog post that Amazon had an unfair stranglehold on their distribution channels, and that Macmillan might consider subscription ebook services like Oyster and Scribd. As of today, Macmillan’s finally signed on to start offering their books with the two top ebook subscription startups.

The first is Oyster, the company commonly labelled the “Netflix for books,” regardless of whether they like the label or not. The other is Scribd, which could be better described as the YouTube for books, given their mix of professionally published books and a vast library of user generated content. Read More

book club

Now That They Have Audiobooks, CEO Explains Exactly What Scribd Is

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When you think of book subscription services, if you think about them, you probably think of Oyster first, regardless of the fact that Scribd offers nearly the same service. This morning, Scribd finally gave us a reason they might pull ahead in the race to be the “Netflix for Books.”

Scribd has added 30,000 audio books to their book subscription service. Considering both leading book subscription companies have partnerships with Simon & Schuster and HarperCollins, this is the first major play to put Scribd squarely ahead of Oyster in terms of offerings. Read More

Freshly Minted

Why’d Apple Buy Beats and Booklamp? Probably to Build a Massive Subscription Platform

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Welcome to Freshly Minted, where we examine an overlooked deal or funding announcement in tech from the past week and tell you what you need to know and why it matters.

The deal: Apple acquired book analysis startup Booklamp for an alleged $10 to $15 million, likely to begin work building a book subscription platform, or something much bigger.

Apple is always stark and shady when it comes to their acquisitions. They’ve bought a number of under-the-radar startups, and when asked why, they offer up the same response:

“Apple buys smaller technology companies from time to time, and we generally do not discuss our purpose or plans.” Read More

The Future of the Ebook

Oyster Launches on Desktop, Makes Books Look More Like Blog Posts

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Oyster is on a roll lately. They’ve been signing up new publishers, launching new apps, getting good reviews — they’ve even gotten people to rightfully start calling them the “Netflix for Books.”

To add to all of that, as of this morning Oyster is launching their desktop app, making their books available wherever there’s a working browser tab. Though Read More

Freshly Minted

Freshly Minted: For This Book Subscription Platform, The Publishing World Is Their Oyster

As reading habits shift over to digital, subscription models are poised to seize a huge portion of the ebook market. (via Getty)

Welcome to Freshly Minted, where we examine an overlooked deal or funding announcement in tech from the past week, and tell you what you need to know, and why it matters.

This week’s deal: Oyster, the Netflix for books, signed a deal with Simon & Schuster that will give Oyster subscribers access to Simon & Schuster’s entire backlist.

Oyster, a service that charges $10 a month for all-you-can-read access to a library of half a million books, just added heavyweight Simon & Schuster to their list of publishers. That makes two of the Big Five companies that dominate the publishing game, and if Oyster can sign on the remaining three publishers, they could take their place among companies like Spotify and Netflix as one of the great subscription titans of the decade. Read More