Thursday, May 26, 2011

More than 3 million free e-books online as Google's e-book store grows

The Independent - Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Google's library of free e-books is expanding rapidly.
Claudio Bravo/

Within just six months of launching, Google has added over one million titles to its e-book store, Google eBooks, putting its total number of free e-books in excess of 3 million.
"Free ebooks aren’t the only thing on the rise," said Google product manager Abe Murray. "At launch, there were just over 100 independent booksellers selling Google eBooks - now there are more than 250. And while we had just over 5,000 publishers participating when Google eBooks first hit the cloud, we now have more than 7,000 - a 40% increase in half a year."

Readers are voraciously consuming free e-books on line via the Google Books Web Reader, on mobile devices via free applications and on compatible e-readers, said Google.

Downloads of the company’s Google Books apps for iOS, Android and Chrome have exceeded 2.5 million since December.  

Google isn't the only one bringing free e-books to the masses. Sites such as Free-eBooks, FreeBookSpot, Many Books, Scribd, and of course Project Gutenberg offer free, downloadable e-books.

In May online retailer Amazon announced that sales of digital books for its Kindle e-reader had surpassed sales of print books on its websites.

Google will be sharing additional facts and figures about its e-book store at BookExpo America on May 24-26.

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