Amazon’s Print and Ebook Bundling

Recently I posted on the discussions about bundling a free copy of ebooks into every print edition sold. Now Amazon has announced that they will be launching a program like that in October.

Called Kindle Matchbook, the offer is not going to be available on every title. Instead, they need to negotiate with individual publishers. They have predicted that 10,000 titles will be available on that program by its launch date.

Now, Amazon has already taken flack for merely predicting that 10K number. But by now, everyone should know that Amazon’s spin often turns out to be self-fulfilling. The real question is why now, and why Amazon?

Of course the idea is timely and readers love it, so it works. If it helps authors expand their reach, that is useful too. For now, though, the impact seems to be limited to well-known authors or well-known titles (even ones that are decades old). For Amazon, though, it’s a way to enhance their date collection. Depending on whether you abhor big data as an invasion of privacy or think big data on reading trends can be helpful, that might sound greatly overreaching or just plain great.

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