Wiley partners with ebook bundling BitLit

Wiley partners with ebook bundling BitLit

Vancouver-based BitLit has added Wiley to its growing list of ebook-bundling partner publishers, offering deeply discounted DRM-free ebooks to print-book owners.

In this newly announced partnership, readers who own Wiley print books, including Wrox and Sybex imprint titles, will be able to use BitLit's service to download DRM-free editions of those books for 90 percent off the digital list price.

In a prepared statement, Wiley's Peter Balis, vice-president and business development director, said: "BitLit aligns with the Wiley vision of giving our customers the information they want, in the form they want, whenever they want it. For over 200 years, Wiley has evolved to meet the needs of our customers and offering our ebooks as bundles is another step in that journey."

BitLit c.e.o. Peter Hudson, in making the announcement of Wiley's inclusion in the programme, said: "Over the past year, BitLit has seen strong user demand for bundling of technical books and we’re happy to be able to meet that demand with the addition of titles from Wiley. We’re excited that Wiley shares the BitLit vision that readers should be able to read what they want, how they want."

Mary Alice Elcock, BitLit vice-president of marketing and publisher relations, adds that BitLit's roster of "STEM" offerings is growing -- that's science, technology, engineering, and math -- and includes titles, "most of which aren't available through Amazon."

BitLit, which has twice been shortlisted for a FutureBook Innovation Award, was last in the news with a November announcement of Elsevier as a partner, also opting for DRM-free delivery of its ebooks, and joining technical publishers O'Reilly and Packt on the BitLit platform.

With Wiley onboard, BitLit's list of ebook-bundling partners now numbers more than 260 publishers, with roughly 80,000 titles available for bundling, the company says. Each participating publisher provides to BitLit all or part of its catalog, sets the prices on each ebook edition of a print book, and chooses what, if any, digital rights management (DRM) software features it wants used.

A reader can claim the ebook edition of a print book that he or she owns by writing his or her name (in ink) on the copyright page of the print book and snapping a picture of it using a smartphone. BitLit's vision technology then uses the that image to verify ownership and fulfill the customer's order of the ebook under whatever terms the publisher has selected.

In addition, readers can send images of whole shelves of books -- which BitLit calls "shelfies" -- to the company, which will analyze the spines for available ebook editions through its services. More about this is here on FutureBook.

As reported by Sarah Shaffi, BitLit received funding last May from former Kobo c.e.o. Michael Serbinis' Three Angels Capital new venture fund.