In the third largest country in the western hemisphere, behind the Silicon Curtain, one company seems to be capturing most of the market, or at least most of the publicity. It has hired retired Lada engineers to style a retro-1950s machine which people have to buy if they want to buy its e-books. No-one in the real world is allowed to see or touch this machine, and although a software version is available on the iPhone, that too is not permitted to pass the Silicon Curtain.
How refreshing, therefore, to turn to a company whose presentation and graphic style remind one of the current century. Free of the USA and all its hangups, Shortcovers covers the world. Download its application to your iPod and you can browse through a vast list of books. The buying experience is swift, slick, and utterly consistent:
- Browse to the book you want.
- Tap on its picture.
- Tap on the "Read Excerpt" button.
- See an error message.
La verdad es que con el miedo que he adquirido acerca del Kindle, no me supondría ningún trauma que Kindle no despegara en España y que necesitáramos de otra opción.
Some people may imagine that if Amazon launches the Kindle in Europe then things might improve; but I doubt it. Amazon does not trade as a single international entity, and suppliers have to have separate contracts with Amazon USA, Amazon UK, and so on. Amazon USA doesn’t even know how to do electronic funds transfers to Europe yet. I can’t see Amazon having the skill or the will to match Apple’s international commerce infrastructure.
The case of the other two suppliers I have mentioned is more puzzling. I cannot think of any IT-related reason why they cannot present a customer with a list of items for sale that actually are for sale to the customer; but then they are experts and I am not.
Esperemos que abierta, claro