Amazon has created a web-based Kindle app that does everything the desktop version can do, letting Chromebook users read on the plane but also bypassing Apple's cut on the iPad. The Kindle Cloud Reader only works on Safari and Google's Chrome, and uses HTML5 to download books for offline reading. It also links directly to the …
It even works offline! Very nice...
its a webapp, not ios. it's all done in-browser and not with a native app
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But what about VAT
Once the e-petition site gets a new wick try signing my e-petiton to abolish VAT on e-books. If it's on a cloud or a download it isn't a book so pays VAT, on paper it's a book so no VAT - bomkers EU ruling
Do keep up
VAT is set to be removed from eBooks in December.
How about digital property rights?
The problem with ebooks is you're not buying a book, you're buying a licence for a book. Hence you get whacked with VAT and Amazon / Apple / whomever can revoke your licence whenever they feel like, or even shutdown their service entirely with no repercussions.
If you want to be exempt from VAT, you need to be petitioning for some legal definition of digital property that ebooks (and other media) can be classified as. A person can own a such a book, they can sell / transfer their ownership to someone else in an irrevocable way. Basically they can do exactly the same things they can with their digital property as they can with physical property and be subject to the same taxes and laws.
I don't believe this is impossible either. If bitcoins can establish the concept of owner ship of currency then digital files such as books, videos, music should be possible too.
@deains, no VAT on eBooks from December
Can you quote a source for this information? I really hope it's true!
The next version of iOS will limit the amount of storage that webapps can hold locally, wipe that data after inactivity and implement various other bullshit measures to stop sites from working around local app restrictions.
...puts it outside the control of Apple
Not for very long, I'll bet. The rules are there for the benefit of Apple. No one else. Only Apple. Any attempt to bypass those rules, and remove money from official Apple coffers, will be countered VERY quickly.
I suppose Apple could get rid of their web browser on their platform... that might work.
I guess it would leave a lot of unhappy people behind, though.
Apple are in the business of selling *hardware*. If people buy an iPad because they want to read books on Amazon's cloudy Kindle site, Apple will be more than happy. The income they make from App sales is pocket change.
Seriously: remember that "We've distributed $2bn. to developers already!" line not too long ago? That's 70% of *all* iApp revenues, since the App Store went live. So Apple will have made about $600m., *total revenues* over all that time, out of which they have to pay for all their data centre infrastructure, as well as customer support, and support for developers using the iOS SDK and development tools. (And, of course, the team who maintain the App Store itself.)
Given that the iOS SDK has been around since early 2008. So that's $600 million over *three years*. Or about $200m. / year.
For a company that has over *$70 billion* in its bank account, $200m. a year isn't even in "loose change dropped down the back of a sofa" territory. It's peanuts compared to how much they make from their *hardware* sales.
Can you imagine how much Apple would have to pay to handle customer support for an iOS version of a British tabloid newspaper? Too bloody right they want a cut of the sales! But if The Sun or The Mirror go for an HTML5 web-based site instead, Apple will be just as happy: no cut of revenues, but no support (or political) headaches either.
Get it now? Apple DO NOT CARE about developers, developer communities, or Amazon's bloody Kindle. (I'm not kidding: Apple is far more willing to kill legacy software than Microsoft, who still have features in Windows that let customers run MS-DOS-era applications.)
Apple sell *hardware*. The software is just a component of that hardware. It's utterly, completely, and totally replaceable.
Actually, this is what Apple told them to do: You make an app to distribute through the App Store, then you pay the price. The price includes no access to external stores or distributions, and a 30% cut of all in-app purchases. You don't want to pay the price, fine, use a web app and deal with distribution, sales, payments, and scale yourself.
Some are making this decision to be some sort of ultimatum or display of power in anticipation of banishing competition, but it is actually a very reasonable, wise, and *common* business position.
Only the customer's experience is impacted--and that's _only_ if the web app is not properly implemented or maintained. If it offers the same experience as a native app would, then even the customer is happy.
Apple's view is that a native app would be inherently superior than a web app, and because of that most developers will opt for the latter, as most customers will clamor for it. This ultimately increases their value proposition and sales more hardware.
Note that none of this requires that *all* developers to implement native apps, only a substantial amount. I don't see that changing.
"So that's $600 million over *three years*. Or about $200m. / year."
So they'll be very keen to try and increase that revenue stream in any way they can. Any further leaking from that revenue would I doubt be welcomed.
fixed it for Sean Baggaley
Apple are in the business of selling *hardware*^W^W making money
and there was me thinking that Apple were in the business of suing people with a sideline of hardware
"Apple are in the business of selling *hardware*."
No, Apple is in the business of selling solutions. The iPod isn't just a device to play music, it's part of a mobile music solution: from purchasing (iTunes Store), organizing (iTunes), converting your CDs into MP3s/etc (iTunes), to taking your music with you (iPod). GarageBand adds to that if you want to make your own music and take it with you
The iPhone and iPad are part of mobile solutions. As are their wireless devices, laptops, iOS and OS X, etc.
Mine's the one with the Newton running an apache server
A security risk
Obviously, just like Flash the web is a security risk.
So fans can soon benefit from the safe browsing Apple proxy is what they will use.
We can't have your kids reading non Apple vetted Kindle books can we?
Re "WTF" We are to assume then that *not* getting...........
........... 30% of Amazon's action is all part of Steve's master plan?
and there was me thinking that Apple were in the business of suing everyone
I don't get it
Kindle content is already outside Apple control, Kindles, Androids and PC Apps have no connection to Apple anyway. Apple is only relevant if you use an iThing.
Not a problem here!
The hell you say ...
A Web browser can be used for viewing text content offline? Who knew?
This is pretty good though...
... because it uses the new 'HTML5' database feature, so that all your interaction is entirely within the page itself and handled invisibly by the browser. There's no manual work involved and no need to have access to and an understanding of a traditional file system. You just pin the books you want to be able to read offline and everything is done for you.
I don't actually like reading on the iPad or on any similar light-in-your-face-with-visible-pixels device, but I appreciate what Amazon have done here.