Sunday, July 19, 2015

Exclusive – Entitle eBook Subscription Service Shutting Down


Entitle is one of the many companies now participating in the entire Netflix for e-books concept. They never managed to standout in a crowded marketplace that includes Amazon, Scribd and Oyster and never generated enough revenue to stay in business.  Starting July 21st 2015, Entitle will be closing and they are recommending their existing customers join Scribd.

Entitle, formerly named eReatah, allowed members to read two books a month  $9.99, $14.99 for 3 books/month, and $19.99 for 4 books/month Members will own and have permanent access to any books they download regardless of their subscription status with Entitle, and these books can be read on up to six devices. Members can read books on the newly-launched Entitle e-reading app for iPad, iPhone and Android devices.

There are over 200,000 titles on the Entitle platform from over a thousand publishers, including Simon & Schuster, HarperCollins Publishers, Kensington Books, Berrett-Koehler, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Workman Publishing, Sourcebooks, Open Road Media, RosettaBooks and many more. Entitle is the only eBook subscription company to secure content deals with more than one of the major corporate publishers, and has titles such as Doctor Sleep, Life of Pi, Duck Dynasty's Si-ology 101, Beautiful Ruins, Miracles and Massacres, The Perks of Being A Wallflower, The Storyteller, The Bully Pulpit, Happy, Happy, Happy, Remy, Beautiful Beginning and many more. A few months ago the company became the first subscription service by launching a paid e-book store.

Scribd and Oyster have garnered the lion-share of Silicon Valley investment capital, but Entitle was only able to raise $5.4 million when they first launched. The lack of revenue over the course of the last four years basically destroyed the company.

It is no surprise that Entitle is closing, many industry experts are in agreement that the current e-book subscription system is deeply flawed. Not enough publishers have not committed front-list titles that are on the current New York Times bestseller lists. Instead, they only contribute older titles that have been around for a few years and any serious reader has already borrowed them from the library or bought it.

Tim Hely Hutchinson, chief of Hachette UK simply sees the current generation of e-book websites as not being viable. ""people are always pitching new models to me, and the first thing I say is that the existing model works really well. I don't believe in subscription. I don't see how it would do anything other than cannibalize the business we already have. I know other people take a different view. Within the limits of the law, I hope [HarperCollins UK c.e.o.] Charlie Redmayne will explain it to me, because I don't get it." Neither is he interested in selling direct—"I don't think the consumer wants it. The last thing I think we should be doing it undermining our customers, the retailers.""

Meanwhile Hachette Livre chairman and c.e.o. Arnaud Nourry said in a recent interview that e-book subscription sites are a flawed idea. "Offering subscriptions at a monthly fee that is lower than the price of one book is absurd," he said. "For the consumer, it makes no sense. People who read two or three books a month represent an infinitesimal minority. And there are bookshops. If I seem like a dinosaur, so be it. My colleagues at Penguin Random House say the same thing."

eBook Sales Increase 25% in the Netherlands

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e-Book sales have plateaued in North America and the United Kingdom, but other markets are starting to takeoff. The Netherlands is one country where digital content is starting to enjoy growth.

The Netherlands has seen a 25% increase in e-book sales compared to the same period in 2014. One of the big proponents of growth are e-book subscription sites such as Elly’s Choice. Subscriptions accounted for 38% of total e-book sales last quarter.

25% growth seems really solid upon first glance, but you have to look at the total book market to put it it in prospective. Right now print accounts for 94% of total book sales, so e-books have a long way to go before they start to garner meaningful revenue.

How to Remove Special Offers from your Kindle


Amazon branded e-readers are more affordable if you opt into their Special Offers program.  This is the companies built in advertising system that serves you targeted campaigns on your homescreen and navigation bar. Some people have received a Fire Tablet or Kindle as a gift and want to remove these obtrusive ads or maybe you just had enough of them.

Removing the Special Offers from your Kindle device is fairly straight forward. You have to visit your Amazon Account Page and login using the user credentials you registered your Kindle with. By default, Your Content is highlighted, which gives you a rundown of all of the e-books you purchased. You want to click on the Your Devices tab and then select your e-reader.   There will be a field on the bottom that says “Special Offers – Subscribed – Edit and if you click on Edit. The cost depends on what model of the Kindle you have, but normally ranges between $15 and $30.

Have you removed the ads in your Kindle? Do you mind them? Drop a comment below.

Kobo Aura Now Available for $99



Kobo and their retail partners have permanently lowered the price of the Kobo Aura to $99. This is a great e-reader because the screen is entirely flush with the bezel, allowing for a more fluid touchscreen experience.

The primary reason the discount is now perpetual is because of the recent release of the Kobo Glo HD. The new device is $139, which is the same price the Aura has been selling for.  You simply can’t have a device that was released in 2013 selling for the same price as the latest and greatest, so Kobo was forced to slash the price.

Canadians can get the Aura for $99 at Chapters/Indigo  and if you order it today the bookseller is throwing in a free $10 giftcard that you can use to buy an e-book. If you live overseas you can get the e-reader from Shop e-Readers who does international shipping.

I wonder if the price discount by Kobo means that the Aura will be discontinued soon.

10 Free Kindle Books and eBook Deals – Sunday, July 19th

Here’s another weekly roundup of 10 free Kindle ebooks for your reading enjoyment. The Kindle ebooks are free as of July 19th, 2015. Please note that most of these titles are free for a limited-time only and will expire in a few days or hours. Owning a Kindle is not required to read these free […]

10 Free Kobo eBooks and Kobo Discount Codes

Lately I’ve been posting a list of 10 free Kindle ebooks each week, usually on Sundays. I used to post lists of free Kobo ebooks too, but somewhere along the line Kobo removed their free ebooks section and made it practically impossible to find free ebooks on their website. Kobo has been redesigning their website […]