Saturday, May 08, 2010

Waiting for an iPad ebook reader

I've been reading eBooks for years, ever since I had a Handspring Visor in 2000 and got my books from Peanut Press and Peanut Press became, and I read their books on my Pocket PC when I got that, I went through two Pocket PCs, in 2005 I got a Dell Axim X50v (still sitting on my desk), and I read many eBooks on that too. Then I got an iPhone. When apps became available it took a while, several months I think, before eReader got their act together to make an iPhone app, so in 2008 I could stop using my Pocket PC. It was great! I read even more books, really long books too, and things were good. Stanza came out which was a better app, and eBooks seemed to be coming into their own. Now *everybody* is doing eBooks. Amazon Kindle, Apple's iBooks, Barns and Noble's Nook, and the venerable eReader still exists. Things started to happen:

  • Amazon purchased Stanza.
  • Fictionwise purchased eReader.
  • Barnes and Noble purchased Fictionwise.
  • The iPad came out, and Apple started iBooks.
I emailed Fictionwise last week, to find out when they were going to do with the iPad. Other people say that Fictionwise is dead, and that they have no plans to update any eReader software for the iPad. However, this is response that I got:
We have not announced a date for native support of iPad at this time. Look for future announcements in our newsletters.
Calm down people! It took a while for eReader to get their act together to get their reader on the iPhone. I reckon it will take time for Barnes and Noble/Fictionwise/eReader to get their act together to get an eReader for the iPad. I can be patient.


Dave Robeson said...

It actually DIDN'T take them time to "get their act together" -- the iPhone eReader app was available on the first day 3rd-party apps were available. (The day before, actually, if you did a direct name search as I did.)

That's why I'M worried -- from Palm, etc. to iPhone was a fairly good-sized job. From iPhone to iPad is a relatively small job. That they haven't done it yet, when the SDK's been available since 1/27, is NOT a good sign.

Major Clanger said...

That's for the correction, I seem to remember waiting for the eReader, maybe I was just waiting for the update that allowed 3rd party apps.

I agree that I don't understand the delay - I am an iPhone app developer in my spare time, and I managed to scale my free app to iPad size over a few weekends! I hope the delay is because they want to add fancy graphics with page turning and all that jazz.

I can't quite believe that B&N would simply let these businesses die. I reckon that their full screen reader will support Fictionwise and eReader too. I really hope so as I have a lot of books in that format now!

I would write my own reader, except I don't have the code for the horrible DRM, nor do I have the time.

In any case, Fictionwise have changed their reponse to be "just wait and see" which is a little more comforting than their previous "no plans" response.