Apple reworking iBooks app to get back into the digital books

Apple-Books-Revamp-iOS-11-3

Apple is reportedly tweaking its e-book offering to better take on Amazon, the current leader of the digital book market. The new app, due to be released in coming months, will include a simpler interface that better highlights books now being read and a redesigned digital book store that looks more like the new App Store launched a year ago, according to people familiar with its development. This new app will have tabs where you can view the books you're now reading, along with a tab dedicated to audiobooks. The company has hired a former Audible and Barnes & Noble executive to lead these efforts. It would also mark a potential comeback for Apple after the US Justice Department sued the company and publishers for working together to raise book prices and fined Apple $450 million. There's also a new digital book store within the app that's said to be similarly created to Apple's current App Store, which received a drastic redesign in iOS 11.

"This will be the biggest upgrade to Apple's e-book service in several years", Gurman pointed out, noting how, prior to the DOJ lawsuit and subsequent fine, e-books were actually a key part of the company's services business. Clearly Apple doesn't want to miss the chance to capitalize on the e-book and audiobook market, which has become increasingly popular but is also now dominated by Amazon.

The e-commerce giant had just over 83 percent of the USA e-book market in early 2017, up from 74 percent in October 2015, according to AuthorEarnings, which tracks book sales for writers and other industry participants. If the new report is true, Apple's push to modernize iBooks could significantly increase the level of competition in online books. An Apple spokesman declined to comment. Amazon churns out new versions of Kindle devices at or near to cost and tries to make money selling content. In contrast, Amazon launched a thoroughly updated Kindle mobile app in October 2017.

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