Google eBookstore launches in the UK, shuns Kindle

Google has finally launched the new Google eBookstore in the UK…

Although it seems to have deliberately shut out Kindle users. The system seems to have banished all mention of the Kindle…

This is a huge hurdle, with potential Kindle buyers not knowing if the book they might be about to purchase will work on their Kindle — or just be an auto-converted mess from a PDF file. Other devices are supported, so I can only assume this is a deliberate shunning. I mean, seriously, a no-hoper like the “iriver” comes first on the list — but they don’t even mention the Kindle?

If I can’t tell the system to adapt its results to the devices I own (e.g.: tell it… “I only want to see books that I can get onto my Kindle”) then there really doesn’t seem to be any reason for a Kindle user to use the Google eBookstore instead of the Kindle Store.

The free stuff is the usual old public-domain classics, and is thus available in virtually the same range on the Kindle Store.

Google Books Search is outstanding as a scholarly research tool, and for previewing entertainment and how-to books. Hopefully the launch of the Google eBookstore in a highly literate nation such as the UK will encourage more publishers to offer substantial previews via Google Books Search. But for purchasing, it’s then nearly always going to be Amazon for me.

For self-publishers, it’s perhaps a different matter. Uploading a PDF to offer a 5% sample on Google Books Search could be useful, but only if you can get Amazon Kindle Store links on the sidebar. But that still won’t get you into the Google eBookstore, which requires that you upload both a PDF and an ePub.

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