Google Editions to launch in US this year, Europe next year

Google Editions to launch in US this year, Europe next year

<p>Google Editions will launch in the US this year, with international launches to follow soon after in 2011, delegates at Tools of Change Frankfurt have heard. Google Editions will be available on multiple devices, including the iPad, online via a Google &#39;web reader&#39;, but will not be available on Amazon&#39;s Kindle device at launch.</p><p>Abraham Murray, product manager on Google&#39;s Books team, said at launch in the US there would be over 400,000 paid-for titles available from &quot;publisher partners&quot;, along with 2m public domain titles, but that more titles would be made available once the service opened internationally. He said the company was working with more than 35,000 publisher partners, in more than 100 countries, and added that he hoped to launch in &quot;much of Europe in first half of the following year&quot;. </p><p>First announced at Frankfurt 2009, Google originally earmarked sumer 2010 for launch, but has kept quiet on an official launch date sparking speculation that the service was proving problematic to get off the ground, and might even be shelved. &quot;We are really looking forward to getting it out of the door,&quot; Murray confessed.</p><p>Once bought, Google Editions will be available for reading on multiple devices, and anywhere in the world. &quot;Territorial rights will govern the sale, but not the access,&quot; he said.</p><p>However, access on the dominant e-book device, Amazon&#39;s Kindle, will not be available at launch despite Murray saying Google Editions was an open platform and <span class="status-body"><span class="status-content"><span class="entry-content">open to collaboration with any hardware manufacturers and partners</span></span></span>.</p><p>Murray said Google would work with US publishers on &quot;agency model&quot; terms, though admitted this was not a model Google had sought and hinted that it might be subject to change. &quot;We will meet the needs of the market, and we are accepting the agency model in the US, but we haven&#39;t gone after it, and as that plays out we will follow.&quot;</p><p>Murray said Google was &quot;delivering a platform for e-books that will be synched across all retailers&quot;, adding that books would &quot;follow the user, won&#39;t get lost or stuck at the store, and will be ever-present in a digital library&quot;. Google will also offer a web-based reader, though at launch this won&#39;t be available for offline reading.</p><p>Murray added: &quot;We are enabling booksellers to sell the content instead of going out of business, and enabling readers to buy and read on any device, and be assured that the content will still be around.&quot; He said: &quot;Nobody else is giving the bookseller a chance as we move to e-books.&quot; </p>