More than five months after the release of the iPad, Apple has finally made paid electronic books available via the iTunes platform for Aussies. Unfortunately, there don't seem to be any discounts involved for most titles.
Apple told publishing blog ebookish that thousands of titles had been added to the iBookstore, which previously only offered free public domain titles to Australian account holders. Publishers who have taken the bait include Hachette, Hardie Grant, HarperCollins, Macmillan, Murdoch Books and Wiley. However, there's little or no discounting despite the much lower production costs, and not much evidence of standardised pricing.
One of the reasons digital music took off was that it offered a better deal to consumers. That's not evident in Apple's approach here, where new release titles are cheaper as hardbacks in many instances. As Nick over at Gizmodo succintly put it: "Trying to charge a premium for a small, DRM filled file is absurd."