GBS: Google Editions to Launch This Summer

Jessica A. Vascellaro and Jeffrey A. Trachtenberg, Google to Launch Digital Books by Early Summer, Wall Street Journal:

Google Inc. will begin selling digital books as early as late June or July, a company representative said Tuesday, jumping into a battle that already involves Inc., Apple Inc. and Barnes & Noble Inc.

Chris Palma, Google’s manager for strategic-partner development, announced the timetable at a panel on Google’s plans sponsored by the Book Industry Study Group in New York. The event, held at Random House’s Manhattan offices, was entitled: “The Book on Google: Is the Future of Publishing in the Cloud?” …

Google says users will be able to buy digital copies of books they discover through its book-search service. It will also allow book retailers—even independent shops—to sell Google Editions on their own sites, taking the bulk of the revenue. Google is still deciding whether it will follow the model where publishers set the retail price or where Google sets retail prices.

These aren’t books under the settlement; these will be e-books that publishers have explicitly authorized Google to sell. But it is clear that Google is ramping up its books infrastructure, and is working to establish that the company is very serious about the book business.

Jennifer Howard at The Chronicle of Higher Education reports: Southern Methodist U. Puts Its Press on the Chopping Block. My response:

Maybe Google Editions will buy it? Douglas Fevens, Halifax, Nova Scotia— The University of Wisconsin, Google, & Me

…or maybe the University should just give the Press to Google Editions after all a number of libraries have given Google Books their entire library collections (even volumes that weren’t their’s to give).

The article gives a launch date as “late June or July”. Perhaps Google was counting on an early decision by Judge Chin?

Douglas Fevens, Halifax, Nova Scotia — The University of Wisconsin, Google, & Me

Here’s another article on Google Editions:

And here is a message Google is sending to the “partners” who have submitted partial or entire books to Google Book Search:

Dear Partner,

Our team is working hard on preparations for the upcoming launch of Google Editions, allowing Google Books Partners to sell digital access to their content with Google.

As part of this work, we’re happy to announce that it is now possible to submit ePub files through your Google Books Partner Program account. ePub is an open-standard file format for digital books. ePub files are not required for Google Editions, but they allow us to offer a reflowable text experience for users on mobile phones or other devices with small screens.

We encourage you to submit your ePub files by August 6 so we can work to make them available at the public launch later this year. Simply follow the steps outlined here to submit them: .

Please also keep in mind that if you have high quality PDFs, you should provide them along with any ePub files - even if the book has already been scanned from a print copy or you provided a lower quality PDF in the past. Submitting a high quality PDF enhances the image quality and enables readers to have the option of viewing the original print layout of your book. You can submit PDFs through the Uploader tool in your account by following the instructions here: .

In summary, here’s a quick checklist for you to make sure you’re ready for Google Editions: 1) Confirm that you’ve enabled Google Editions for your titles. You can do this by going to the Google Editions tab of your Partner Program Account ( and following the instructions. If you have not yet clicked to agree to the Addendum, please do so. 2) Review your settings for titles, including the pricing, territories, and other options. You can confirm and update all of these settings on the Show Books page of the Google Editions tab, either for individual books or in bulk using a spreadsheet. 3) Submit high-quality PDFs and ePub files through your Partner Program account.

Don’t hesitate to let us know if you have any questions!


The Google Books Team