Apple has experimented with a new section of their iBookstore called ‘Breakout Books‘. This program has been tested in the Australian and New Zealand market for the last last. It showcases ebooks written by independent authors that have generally four and five star reviews. Breakout Books will help emerging authors and established veterans get their time in the sun.
The featured books section is organized into four categories: Romance, Sci-Fi & Fantasy, Mysteries & Thrillers, and More to Explore. On average there is around 70 books in the section. Each one tends to cost substantially less than ebooks released by major publishers, with titles ranging from $2 to $5. Most of the ebooks originate from Smashwords, which is the leading self-publishing portal for self-published authors. Currently, the company is contributing 50 of the 70 ebooks offered in the new program.
Apple commented that “Although the iBookstore has always carried and supported self-published ebooks, today’s launch signifies an escalated commitment on the part of Apple, whose iBookstore currently sells books in 50 countries. The iBookstore first piloted the Breakout Books feature in their Australian store and has since implemented similar features in Canada and the U.K.”
Mark Coker, CEO of Smashwords told us that “Apple is helping to shape a brighter, more democratized future for book publishing. More writers will have the freedom to publish and more readers will have the freedom to discover and enjoy a greater diversity of high-quality books than ever before.”
Michael Kozlowski has been writing about audiobooks and e-readers for the past twelve years. His articles have been picked up by major and local news sources and websites such as the CBC, CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and the New York Times. He Lives in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.