Ebook readership is growing every day, as more and more people buy Kindles and other ebook readers. Now, Apple has brought its own entry to market -- the iPad, which will give another boost to the ebook phenomenon.
Things are looking rosy for electronic publishing, but there is one small problem -- nobody seems to know what a good ebook price is. Amazon is the largest ebook seller, and they have kept the price at $9.99 for most of their titles, simply because they think consumers will balk at anything priced higher than that. Macmillan, a huge publisher, wanted to price some of their ebooks higher, but Amazon said no. The situation got tense, and Amazon pulled all Macmillan titles from its electronic shelves last Friday. However, Amazon has now given in (see story here) and is allowing Macmillan to charge higher prices for bestselling titles.
There's a very good analysis of the situation from an author's point of view here. It's long, but the author gives a lot of good information about pricing in the ebook universe, and how much money trickles back to the author. Every writer needs to be up to speed on this issue, because ebooks are the fastest growing part of the publishing industry, and they will only get bigger as time goes on. The company that figures out the correct ebook price will benefit greatly.