Amazon Kindle -- A Year Later?

Just about any book light with a flexible neck will work fine with the Kindle. I used the Mighty Bright, I think, $14 or so.

I had a clip-on light and it was too fiddly and annoyingly in the way. I love my headlamp though.

SommerMatt wrote:
muraii wrote:

So everyone's agog about the Paperwhite, and make reference to how it improves on book lights with an unlit Kindle. For those of us not upgrading to a Paperwhite in the foreseeable future, what can you recommend in the way of Kindle book lighting?

I have the official Kindle/Amazon lighted case for my Kindle Keyboard 3G. Works fairly well, and they're (relatively) dirt cheap now -- $17.50.

I'll need to keep looking. Maybe I'll go ebay. Everything I see on Amazon is in the $40+ range.

muraii wrote:
SommerMatt wrote:
muraii wrote:

So everyone's agog about the Paperwhite, and make reference to how it improves on book lights with an unlit Kindle. For those of us not upgrading to a Paperwhite in the foreseeable future, what can you recommend in the way of Kindle book lighting?

I have the official Kindle/Amazon lighted case for my Kindle Keyboard 3G. Works fairly well, and they're (relatively) dirt cheap now -- $17.50.

I'll need to keep looking. Maybe I'll go ebay. Everything I see on Amazon is in the $40+ range.

http://www.amazon.com/Kindle-Leather...

SommerMatt wrote:
muraii wrote:
SommerMatt wrote:
muraii wrote:

So everyone's agog about the Paperwhite, and make reference to how it improves on book lights with an unlit Kindle. For those of us not upgrading to a Paperwhite in the foreseeable future, what can you recommend in the way of Kindle book lighting?

I have the official Kindle/Amazon lighted case for my Kindle Keyboard 3G. Works fairly well, and they're (relatively) dirt cheap now -- $17.50.

I'll need to keep looking. Maybe I'll go ebay. Everything I see on Amazon is in the $40+ range.

http://www.amazon.com/Kindle-Leather...

Thank ye, but that's an unlighted case. I searched for "kindle lighted case" and the cheapest I see (new) is $39.99. That would work for mine, I think, as I don't have a keyboard.

As I have a case already, though, I might just opt for the Magic Bright as noted above, or something like it. I did try one book light and it was a junkfest.

muraii wrote:
SommerMatt wrote:
muraii wrote:
SommerMatt wrote:
muraii wrote:

So everyone's agog about the Paperwhite, and make reference to how it improves on book lights with an unlit Kindle. For those of us not upgrading to a Paperwhite in the foreseeable future, what can you recommend in the way of Kindle book lighting?

I have the official Kindle/Amazon lighted case for my Kindle Keyboard 3G. Works fairly well, and they're (relatively) dirt cheap now -- $17.50.

I'll need to keep looking. Maybe I'll go ebay. Everything I see on Amazon is in the $40+ range.

http://www.amazon.com/Kindle-Leather...

Thank ye, but that's an unlighted case. I searched for "kindle lighted case" and the cheapest I see (new) is $39.99. That would work for mine, I think, as I don't have a keyboard.

As I have a case already, though, I might just opt for the Magic Bright as noted above, or something like it. I did try one book light and it was a junkfest.

Whoops. My bad.

It's the publishers being unable or unwilling to adjust their pricing based on the new formats. Amazon notes any titles where prices are set by the publisher. 100% of the times where a price is set higher than it should be, it's set by the publisher.

I make up for this by borrowing from the library where I can, and refusing to buy kindle versions that I can get cheaper in paper. There are just too many other ways to get cheap books that I just won't pay their prices.

farley3k wrote:

They really have to fix their pricing.

"They" being... who? Snow Crash's kindle pricing was set by Random House, as it says on the Amazon page for it. Random House is more than happy to have you buy their paper product rather than the e-book as they make money either way and likely don't care if e-books succeed. Amazon lost the battle to set all prices themselves as I recall, though there's been a few turnarounds lately.

Beyond that, unless you're talking technical references or textbooks (which can become/are designed to become obsolete) age has never particularly reduced the price of physical books. Certainly e-books lack a secondary market and second-hand books tend to be cheaper than newly-printed examples of the same work, but if you walk into a Barns & Noble or other local non-used bookstore I think you'll find The Hobbit is ever bit as expensive as A Wizard of Earthsea.

I'm glad the Earthsea books are at last available on Kindle. That only happened recently.

I just wish they'd publish some of my other fantasy favorites like the Black Company and the Fionavar Tapestry.

BadKen wrote:

I just wish they'd publish some of my other fantasy favorites like the Black Company and the Fionavar Tapestry.

You can NOT get ebooks of the Black Company novels from baen books: http://www.baenebooks.com/s-157-glen-cook.aspx

They provide multiple formats, DRM free, including mobi for your kindle (you can even have them send directly to your kindle's email address).

EDIT: huh, looking again I see you can't - plenty of Cook's other stuff, but not those.

bnpederson wrote:
farley3k wrote:

They really have to fix their pricing.

"They" being... who? Snow Crash's kindle pricing was set by Random House, as it says on the Amazon page for it. Random House is more than happy to have you buy their paper product rather than the e-book as they make money either way....

Except not, because I can buy a used copy of the paper version for a buck or two and then they get no money from me. I would tend to think that they would prefer to get some money from me than no money from me.

They really have to fix their pricing. I just saw that "Snow Crash" was on their 25 list for only $7.99. The book came out in 1992! It is over 20 years old. It is really worth almost as much as a current paperback? Say Peter F. Hamilton's "Great North Road" which came out Jan 1, 2013 - and sells for $12.99?

Perhaps one could argue the merits of the book make it worth that much but purely in terms of recouping costs and paying the author a reasonable amount - no clear it isn't.

I like my Kindle Paperwhite but their pricing basically means I won't buy anything but new stuff for it. I can go buy Snow Crash for a couple bucks used why would I pay $8?

I know that e-readers are hot right now but I really think they need to change their pricing if they want to keep people buying stuff on them.

Anyway, I hope my library figures out a good lending strategy so I can get books there instead. Something like the Douglas County Colorado model would be interesting.

"The Douglas County Libraries pioneering model for purchasing ebooks directly from publishers is gaining a significant amount of traction.
Colorado’s Marmot Library Network, Anythink Libraries, and Wake County Public Libraries in North Carolina will all soon begin working with the DCL model. The news comes less than two months after San Mateo-based Califa Group, the largest library network in California, also announced plans to adopt DCL’s library-owned, library-managed ebook model. eiNetwork libraries in Pennsylvania’s Allegheny County also recently began working with Marmot, Anythink and WCPL on a branch of the VuFind open source platform for online library catalogs, and are monitoring the work being done on the DCL model, although they do not have any immediate plans to adopt it.

Anythink is one of many systems adopting the DCL Model
And, already this year, DCL has brought several new publishers into the fold, including Dzanc Books, children’s book publishers Gareth Stevens and Crabtree Publishing, educational materials provider Infobase Learning, cooperative publishing house Book View Café, mystery publisher Poisoned Pen Press, and ebook self-publisher Book Brewer.
DCL Director Jamie LaRue said that legal framework documents that DCL developed in conjunction with Mary Minow at LibraryLaw.com have helped facilitate discussions with publishers since January.
“Putting that common-understanding legal framework in place has saved us a lot of time with publishers,” LaRue told LJ. “It always begins when the publisher says ‘well, you just want to give it away, right?’ And we say, ‘No. we attach Digital Rights Management and we restrict [circulation] to one user at a time, just as we have always done.’”
This misunderstanding about ebook circulation at libraries appears to be a common one. In February, after leading an American Library Association delegation to New York to discuss ebook lending with representatives from Penguin, Macmillan, Random House, Simon & Schuster and Perseus, ALA President Molly Raphael noted that “some publishers had the impression that libraries lend to whomever visited their respective websites, thus making collections available virtually worldwide without restriction,” according to an ALA release.
LaRue said assuring publishers that DLC uses the industry-standard Adobe Content Server DRM tools, and that the library system buys multiple copies of ebooks based on demand from their community, makes the arrangement sound more familiar to publishers.
Integrated Vu
The expansion of the DCL ebook model to Marmot, AnyThink, WCPL and eiNetwork was the result of a separate project. In 2011, DCL had begun using VuFind+, a version of the VuFind open source OPAC and library resource portal that Colorado’s Marmot system had enhanced “with modern search capabilities, faceted navigation, location-sensitive holdings displays, social web features, links to the Prospector regional union catalog, and integrated obituary discovery,” Marmot Director Jimmy Thomas wrote in the organization’s latest annual report.
DCL’s developers, naturally, had then begun enhancing VuFind+ to work more seamlessly with all of the new ebooks that they were storing on their own servers.
These enhancements by Marmot and DCL have since been merged into one new version of VuFind+, which was quickly adopted by Anythink, as well as WCPL and eiNetwork. Trying the DCL ebook model at these other libraries is a natural next step.
Thomas said that in a recent conversation he told LaRue, “what you and Douglas County are doing with ebooks is a very cool demonstration project. I’d like to prove that the concept is scalable, I’d like to see if I can make it work with 21 more libraries in the state, in a multi-type consortium setting.”
Ebooks purchased direct from publishers will supplement each library’s existing Overdrive content.
The DCL model has been quick to generate interest throughout the library community, but by virtue of its origin at DCL, Colorado is becoming the nerve center of the growing concept. After Thomas and LaRue shared information about their plans with other groups in the state, the E-voke Committee was formed to focus on “ebooks and their future in Colorado, with an eye open to other forms of E-content (audio, video, other).”
The group includes representatives from DCL, Marmot, the Colorado State Library, the Colorado Library Consortium, the Colorado Alliance of Research Libraries, and Auraria Library. Their website, evoke.cvlsites.org, already includes a simple “How to Do It” page, including links to letters, forms and agreements to send to publishers, an annotated, regularly updated list of publishers that have already demonstrated willingness to sell econtent, links to server and ebook authoring support software, and documents detailing technical aspects of the system, such as a recommended server farm layout.
However this movement evolves, Thomas said that he and the rest of the group felt that libraries simply had to stay involved during the rapid growth of the ebook market.
“What’s clear is that we have to do something,” he said. “Whether we make mistakes and get bloodied doing something that’s completely crazy doesn’t matter, because moving forward in this arena is hugely important to readers.”
As LJ has reported, other libraries and organizations are currently considering DCL’s library-owned, library-managed ebook model, including Lyrasis, the State Library of North Carolina, the South Carolina State Library, the Queens Library, the Tampa Bay Library Consortium, and others. LaRue told LJ that a coalition of public libraries in Dallas, and the state librarian of Massachusetts have also recently expressed interest.
Currently, the DCL model still has library systems and multi-type library consortia dealing with publishers on a one-to-one basis. Accustomed to working with distributors, the largest publishers may be unwilling to accept this model. But, as a growing number of libraries test the concept, their aggregate buying power is going to start drawing attention.
“Clearly publishers don’t want to develop a delivery system for just one library at a time,” LaRue said. “They need to know that it’s a model that has gained some traction and has some money behind it. …Everytime somebody comes on line and says they’re interested, we say ‘here’s a list of all the publishers we’ve dealt with.’ So [those publishers] are getting a good boost of business, and they’re seeing that they’re being well respected, and that being in this market means some immediate pickup.”
To hear more about the DCL model, check out Library Journal’s upcoming webcast “eBooks: a New Paradigm in Douglas County, or a New Twist on the Past?“ on Tuesday, June 12.

bnpederson wrote:
farley3k wrote:

They really have to fix their pricing.

"They" being... who? Snow Crash's kindle pricing was set by Random House, as it says on the Amazon page for it. Random House is more than happy to have you buy their paper product rather than the e-book as they make money either way and likely don't care if e-books succeed. Amazon lost the battle to set all prices themselves as I recall, though there's been a few turnarounds lately.

Beyond that, unless you're talking technical references or textbooks (which can become/are designed to become obsolete) age has never particularly reduced the price of physical books. Certainly e-books lack a secondary market and second-hand books tend to be cheaper than newly-printed examples of the same work, but if you walk into a Barns & Noble or other local non-used bookstore I think you'll find The Hobbit is ever bit as expensive as A Wizard of Earthsea.

1. Yes They is the publisher. However one would be delusional to think that Amazon doesn't hold any sway in the pricing decision.

2. Age certainly reduces the price people are willing to pay. Yes new copies still cost as much but there is a huge used market. That is a market publishers get none of! If they were smart they would price older items competativly to used prices.

farley3k wrote:
bnpederson wrote:
farley3k wrote:

They really have to fix their pricing.

"They" being... who? Snow Crash's kindle pricing was set by Random House, as it says on the Amazon page for it. Random House is more than happy to have you buy their paper product rather than the e-book as they make money either way and likely don't care if e-books succeed. Amazon lost the battle to set all prices themselves as I recall, though there's been a few turnarounds lately.

Beyond that, unless you're talking technical references or textbooks (which can become/are designed to become obsolete) age has never particularly reduced the price of physical books. Certainly e-books lack a secondary market and second-hand books tend to be cheaper than newly-printed examples of the same work, but if you walk into a Barns & Noble or other local non-used bookstore I think you'll find The Hobbit is ever bit as expensive as A Wizard of Earthsea.

1. Yes They is the publisher. However one would be delusional to think that Amazon doesn't hold any sway in the pricing decision.

2. Age certainly reduces the price people are willing to pay. Yes new copies still cost as much but there is a huge used market. That is a market publishers get none of! If they were smart they would price older items competativly to used prices.

I don't think publishers believe they're in competition with the used book market. In other words I don't see when they'll replace pricing or allow for more thorough "lending" of books while the people who choose e-readers are still people who prefer it as a bit of a luxury. Most people still read paper books and have no issues with prices because that market is more fluid for them.

Is there the same complaint that it costs $9.99 for a copy of Abbey Road on iTunes? It's older than Snow Crash but costs the same as brand new albums. You can even get used copies of the CDs for a couple bucks. Or even looking at printed books: a new copy of Snow Crash at Barnes & Noble will set you back $10.98 in paperback, while the just-released paperback of Death Comes to Pemberley will also cost you $10.98.

I think "age certainly reduces the price people are willing to pay" should perhaps better be rephrased as "age certainly reduces the price farley3k is willing to pay".

I don't think publishers believe they're in competition with the used book market.

Because they're not. The book market and the used book market have been around for long enough for both industries to know that they're not really competing with one another.

Yep. If you were Kindling back when it was a new thing, you'd have seen that hardcovers were always 10 bucks, and paperbacks were typically a dollar or two off. I can't remember the digital copies ever being as expensive as the printed versions until they lost their ability to set their own prices.

farley3k wrote:
bnpederson wrote:
farley3k wrote:

They really have to fix their pricing.

"They" being... who? Snow Crash's kindle pricing was set by Random House, as it says on the Amazon page for it. Random House is more than happy to have you buy their paper product rather than the e-book as they make money either way and likely don't care if e-books succeed. Amazon lost the battle to set all prices themselves as I recall, though there's been a few turnarounds lately.

Beyond that, unless you're talking technical references or textbooks (which can become/are designed to become obsolete) age has never particularly reduced the price of physical books. Certainly e-books lack a secondary market and second-hand books tend to be cheaper than newly-printed examples of the same work, but if you walk into a Barns & Noble or other local non-used bookstore I think you'll find The Hobbit is ever bit as expensive as A Wizard of Earthsea.

1. Yes They is the publisher. However one would be delusional to think that Amazon doesn't hold any sway in the pricing decision.

There was a series of lawsuits regarding price fixing, some of which are ongoing, involving Apple and a group of publishers. Amazon was brought in to testify exactly this, that they don't have much sway on pricing.

Edit: clarity

Yeah, there was a big deal a couple of years ago where one of the big publishers pulled all of their books from Amazon for a while until Amazon agreed to let them set their own prices. That's when the "this price was set by the publisher" started.

ClockworkHouse wrote:

Because they're not. The book market and the used book market have been around for long enough for both industries to know that they're not really competing with one another.

How do you figure? If I set out to buy a copy of A Clash for Kings today, I can either buy a new copy or a used copy. I will definitely buy one or the other, and I will definitely not buy both.

That seems to be pretty much the dictionary definition of "competition" to me.

Because the publishers have long ago accounted for that in their sales models.

farley3k wrote:

They really have to fix their pricing. I just saw that "Snow Crash" was on their 25 list for only $7.99. The book came out in 1992! It is over 20 years old. It is really worth almost as much as a current paperback? Say Peter F. Hamilton's "Great North Road" which came out Jan 1, 2013 - and sells for $12.99?

Yes, because Stephenson remains a popular author, and Snow Crash is one of his popular books. Most books have a bit of an expiration date because their authors sell a few novels and fade away out of the public eyes. Their books lose value as time passes. But an author who stays popular will always pull in new readers for their older books. The price will remain elevated until they fade out, and that hasn't happened with Stephenson.

I don't know what the math is like for everyone else, but I buy a Kindle book when I want a digital copy. If it isn't something I care to own in hardcover, forever, it gets purchased on the Kindle. Novels rarely make the "physical copy" cut. The cost difference isn't worth the time it takes me to get to the store to buy a used copy of a book I don't wish to permanently own.

Even if I'm buying a physical copy I'll get it new from Amazon or from a local new-book store rather than search it out in a used book lot. I tend to want a specific book or series of books and used book stores are terrible for that. If I'm looking for something random to read before a plane flight I'll wander into the used book store down the block, otherwise prime and Kindle are my solutions.

TheHipGamer wrote:

I don't know what the math is like for everyone else, but I buy a Kindle book when I want a digital copy. If it isn't something I care to own in hardcover, forever, it gets purchased on the Kindle. Novels rarely make the "physical copy" cut. The cost difference isn't worth the time it takes me to get to the store to buy a used copy of a book I don't wish to permanently own.

I agree with this. I buy a Kindle copy to get the Kindle convienance. Price isn't really a factor, generally.

TheCounselor wrote:

Price isn't really a factor, generally.

For me price isn't really a factor beyond making me irritated I am paying a higher price than physical, but I still do it.

I usually wait until the price drops.

I'm still trying to convince my wife (and myself) to go digital and snatch up a Kindle Paperwhite. I love the features that they include, (X-ray, estimated time to finish the book, dictionary, etc.) but we just can't seem to pull the trigger. One, the price to get the device, but then to buy books on it instead of the books we already have is kind of a hurdle. So it keeps us on the fence. And two, we still don't have a tablet, so we're always debating about just getting an iPad or Kindle Fire (HD or not) and then we're in that "analysis paralysis" mode and just give up the gun.

But it seems the Kindle Paperwhite is the way to go, just for an eReader and we are both fast approaching that shift where we are fed up with physical books overrunning our house.

The thing they've done lately for some books I like is Whispersync for Voice. If you have a Kindle version and an audiobook version from Audible (which is owned by Amazon) then it will keep the two in sync. Listen to the audiobook on the drive home then pick up the Kindle and the text is synced to wherever you got in the audiobook. Read some at night and when you get in the car the next day the audiobook starts where your reading stopped.

The cynical part of me thinks "yeah, that's just so you'll buy the same book twice". The geek in me thinks "that is so frikkin' cool".

Even though my wife has a Kindle I was skeptical of how much I'd actually like reading on one until I had one of my own. But I finally pulled the trigger and now the few paper books left on my pile are gathering dust because I simply like reading on the Kindle so much more. And being able to get and start reading a new book the moment I finish my current one is incredibly nice. If you're on the fence and can afford to try one I say do it. And definitely get a Paperwhite. e-Ink is worlds better than reading on any LCD unless you have a need for color display (textbooks, for example).

Ended up replacing my first gen Nook with a Paperwhite over the holidays and I love the thing. I'd started using the Kindle app on my phone cause I couldn't even download the Nook app from the B&N website (I'm in Japan) and am in love with the syncing that the app does with my Kindle. The first gen Nook was OK, but when I first got it I couldn't connect to the B&N store even using WiFi. And for a while I couldn't even buy books from the B&N website from my computer without using a VPN. Kinda soured me on the company and the device.

On ebook pricing...I've come to the conclusion that 5 bucks is my pricepoint for things digital. Books, music, movies, give it to me for 5 bucks and I'll buy. Physical copies of things, I'll up the pricepoint to about 10 bucks. Amazon is pretty good about having daily deals for books and doing a monthly "100 books for under 5 dollars" thingy. I'm wondering if Amazon will get around to doing something similar with what they did with their music recently: customers who'd bought a physical CD in the past 12 years got an mp3 copy of that CD added to their Amazon music collection. I'd probably start buying physical books again if I were credited an ebook copy with it.