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Angry Apple makes hollow threat to bar Kindle, other ebook apps...


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Lifeisabeach

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RONE View Post
Yes, Apple colluded with publishers to raise eBook prices. But do you understand why they did it? It was because Amazon was selling books at a loss to stifle competition. So don't go saying that Apple was harming competition! I would say without a second thought that there is more competition in the eBook industry now than there was 4 years ago.
That may or not be a myth. I've read that they sold some books at a loss, but overall they are profitable on them. There's is nothing illegal about it anyway. And in the realm of a "free" market that you long for, there wouldn't be any laws allowed to regulate it anyway, right? Apple's collusion eliminated Amazon's (and indeed, anyone's) ability to use price as a competitive tactic. Apple didn't want to compete on price so they colluded to take away Amazon's (and everyone's) ability to do so.

Also, to further elaborate on why I frown on Apple's refusal to allow 3rd parties to sell ebooks (and other media) directly via an app... some people are increasingly using an iPad as their sole computer. Without doubt, that will increase in time as iOS becomes more capable. But, and correct me if I'm wrong, in such a scenario, it is impossible to buy ebooks and other media from anyone but Apple except through Safari, and you can't get it on your iPad without syncing over a computer. If the iPad is your computer, then you are stuck in Apple's ecosystem. And if OS X heads in this same direction over time (I'm not convinced it will, but who knows for sure?), then what? Switch to another OS? HAH! MS would likely just follow suit, and Linux isn't going to cut it for a lot of people for a lot of reasons.

The argument can be made that the Kindle and Nook don't allow 3rd party stores, but then they NEVER have. These are also truly more like "consumption" devices than the iPad is. Really, they are little more than ereaders with an LCD screen instead of eink. Maybe the iPad isn't "quite" beyond being a mere consumption device, but it's getting there, and again, for many people it is there.


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Originally Posted by vansmith View Post
I don't see how that's the case. How is the unchecked selling of untenable mortgages a product of over-regulation? The governments of the world didn't tell banks and financial institutions to sell bad rates (read that as "unmanageable") nor did the government tell these groups to take part in shady financial practices that ultimately hurts millions. Companies can find ways around things which would suggest the opposite of what you're saying which is the need for closer oversight. A perfect example of this - Canadian banks, during the peak of the financial crisis, received nothing in support because they've always been well regulated (source). In fact, they were still turning profits (albeit considerably smaller) during the peak of the global downturn.
Ford Motor Company didn't receive any support during the financial crisis because their executives saw the direction things were heading, and chose to be proactive and prepared. They came out of the financial situation stronger than they went in - all WITHOUT the government telling them what to do.

You can't regulate enough to protect poor choices by consumers (and I wouldn't want to, anyway). Ultimately, the fault lays with the consumers who were getting way in over their heads because they didn't do their research and the executives/decision-makers of companies who didn't plan for potential changes in the future. Every regulatory change I see to 'protect' someone lasts for a generation, until the new youth reaches that same age, then they come up with their own new, stupid choices. As an example, look at the number of ridiculous warning labels on every appliance you buy nowadays, and yet people still manage to do something new and dumb with it to hurt themselves. Same thing goes for financial regulations.

Quote:
Originally Posted by vansmith View Post
Regulating the actions of groups that are heavily invested in the social good (as banks are) is never a bad thing. And let's not forget the flip side to your argument - the governments were regulating financial institutions when the economy was strong. True, they may have been able to make more but really, there's something to be said for consistency in financial markets and not "let's hope for the best" that comes with ruthless deregulation. You can also enjoy regulation while being free - Canada's economy is heavily regulated in comparison and it is, by some measures, freer (whatever this means) than the American economy (source).
How is an electronics company "heavily invested in the social good"? This doesn't pertain to Apple at all.
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A minor point - the credit rating of the government is wholly exclusive of their regulatory practices. One is about managing their own money (credit rating) and the other is about regulating the spending of other people's money (regulations). The former was significantly hurt by the inability of some groups to regulate their own practices and not an intrinsic fault.
The two go hand in hand. Did our credit rating drop as a sequela to the financial crisis that occurred despite government regulations on businesses? Yes.
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Originally Posted by vansmith View Post
Then you don't actually disagree with me?
As I said, I have never believed a truly free market economy can work in today's society. It doesn't mean I don't want less regulation, nor that I'm not against more regulation.
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Originally Posted by vansmith View Post
Collective good over the individual(s) good. On top of that, all regulations restrict how businesses can engage in their various practices (that's what they're designed for).
I don't view it as the government's job to force ethics and morals on people. Apparently we vote different party lines.



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Originally Posted by lifeisabeach View Post
That may or not be a myth. I've read that they sold some books at a loss, but overall they are profitable on them. There's is nothing illegal about it anyway. And in the realm of a "free" market that you long for, there wouldn't be any laws allowed to regulate it anyway, right? Apple's collusion eliminated Amazon's (and indeed, anyone's) ability to use price as a competitive tactic. Apple didn't want to compete on price so they colluded to take away Amazon's (and everyone's) ability to do so.
I think it was pretty well known that Amazon was losing several dollars on every new bestseller eBook they sold (Article from '09 touching on Amazon's losses.). And as I specified prior to your post, I have never believed a truly free market economy can work in today's society. It doesn't mean I don't want less regulation, though, or that I'm not against more regulation.
Quote:
Originally Posted by lifeisabeach View Post
Also, to further elaborate on why I frown on Apple's refusal to allow 3rd parties to sell ebooks (and other media) directly via an app... some people are increasingly using an iPad as their sole computer. Without doubt, that will increase in time as iOS becomes more capable. But, and correct me if I'm wrong, in such a scenario, it is impossible to buy ebooks and other media from anyone but Apple except through Safari, and you can't get it on your iPad without syncing over a computer. If the iPad is your computer, then you are stuck in Apple's ecosystem. And if OS X heads in this same direction over time (I'm not convinced it will, but who knows for sure?), then what? Switch to another OS? HAH! MS would likely just follow suit, and Linux isn't going to cut it for a lot of people for a lot of reasons.
Ok, I'll correct you. You're wrong. You can open any book in Safari and transfer it to iBooks, Marvin, Kindle, or whatever eBook reader you want to use. And even if Apple did restrict such a thing, let the demand drive their choices. Poor business practice = fewer purchases = lost revenue = changed business practices. (Look at the recent Microsoft XBox One announcement for examples of that!)
Quote:
Originally Posted by lifeisabeach View Post
The argument can be made that the Kindle and Nook don't allow 3rd party stores, but then they NEVER have. These are also truly more like "consumption" devices than the iPad is. Really, they are little more than ereaders with an LCD screen instead of eink. Maybe the iPad isn't "quite" beyond being a mere consumption device, but it's getting there, and again, for many people it is there.
This is a very interesting point that I hadn't considered. What you've pointed out is akin to saying that it would be ok for the government to suddenly decide that Amazon has to allow for the sale of eBooks from the iBookstore on their devices. And what about the Kindle Fire? No different. Apple allowed, by its own choice, to have the Kindle app, etc in the App Store because it knew it would be able to make money from them. Take away that incentive, and why should a company continue to allow the app? They shouldn't have to, yet the government wants to force them to do exactly that.
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Agree with lifeisabeach. Such a decision would only serve to cement my decision to stay with a Kindle or Android tablet. It would push me toward an Android phone in lieu of iOS and possibly back to Windows (or give Linux another go) with my next computer purchase.

If Microsoft had hatched a plan with the introduction of Win 3.1 or Win95 that afforded them a 30% cut of everything that could be sold to work and run in Windows, MS would not exist today.

This feeling that they deserve a 30% cut of everyone else's work because they created the operating system is, as far as I am concerned, the height of greed.
Quote:
Originally Posted by RavingMac View Post
As I am heavily invested in Amazon media (mostly Kindle eBooks) any move to prevent me accessing it on my iPad would cause me to exercise my free-market choice to switch to another platform.

I agree completely with both of these comments.

I have an iPad Mini, which I use so I can read Kindle, Nook, Kobo and other eBooks (amongst other things). I would be very unhappy having to carry at least 4 separate eReaders in order to do this.

Why should Apple be entitled to anything at all in return for people using their OS in order to use someone else's content? They wrote the OS and created the device. They were paid for both of those. That should be enough.

How we use the products should be up to us
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nighthawk4 View Post
I agree completely with both of these comments.

I have an iPad Mini, which I use so I can read Kindle, Nook, Kobo and other eBooks (amongst other things). I would be very unhappy having to carry at least 4 separate eReaders in order to do this.

Why should Apple be entitled to anything at all in return for people using their OS in order to use someone else's content? They wrote the OS and created the device. They were paid for both of those. That should be enough.

How we use the products should be up to us
The app developers agreed to the terms of service and the price they'd have to pay. What I'm hearing from you is no different than signing a mortgage on a house and then being pissed about the terms afterward.

Is it also not fair that Apple requires carriers to pay more for their phones than other companies do?
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RONE View Post
Ford Motor Company didn't receive any support during the financial crisis because their executives saw the direction things were heading, and chose to be proactive and prepared. They came out of the financial situation stronger than they went in - all WITHOUT the government telling them what to do.
That makes it sound as if Ford operated beyond the boundaries that is regulation. They're success was, and always will be, in part due to regulations which ensure that they don't do stupid things that are thought to be wise through the lens of greed.

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You can't regulate enough to protect poor choices by consumers (and I wouldn't want to, anyway). Ultimately, the fault lays with the consumers who were getting way in over their heads because they didn't do their research and the executives/decision-makers of companies who didn't plan for potential changes in the future.
The issue here is you are creating a binary in which you have no regulation on one hand and excessive regulation on the other.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RONE View Post
Every regulatory change I see to 'protect' someone lasts for a generation, until the new youth reaches that same age, then they come up with their own new, stupid choices. As an example, look at the number of ridiculous warning labels on every appliance you buy nowadays, and yet people still manage to do something new and dumb with it to hurt themselves. Same thing goes for financial regulations.
And warnings/regulations have never saved anyone from something? You're making a tenuous logical link between the presence of warning labels and personal ignorance. So, is the answer to simply remove all labels? That's a risky game to play that leads to nothing beneficial.


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How is an electronics company "heavily invested in the social good"? This doesn't pertain to Apple at all.
You were talking about the federal credit rating and I responded by talking about financial institutions. It was entirely relevant.

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Originally Posted by vansmith View Post
That makes it sound as if Ford operated beyond the boundaries that is regulation. They're success was, and always will be, in part due to regulations which ensure that they don't do stupid things that are thought to be wise through the lens of greed.
The other car manufactures managed to do stupid things that were thought to be wise through the lens of greed, despite those regulations which "saved" Ford. I don't buy that those regulations saved them. Ford did some serious restructuring prior to the financial collapse to mitigate the impending damage without any guidance from the government.
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The issue here is you are creating a binary in which you have no regulation on one hand and excessive regulation on the other.
But I don't want more than a minimum of regulation. If I asked for excessive regulation at some point previously, it was a typo.
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Originally Posted by vansmith View Post
And warnings/regulations have never saved anyone from something? You're making a tenuous logical link between the presence of warning labels and personal ignorance. So, is the answer to simply remove all labels? That's a risky game to play that leads to nothing beneficial.
Survival of the fittest. It worked pretty darn well for the past, say, 4.5 billion years. You really think we have somehow developed something in the last few thousand years that somehow trumps the work being done by cold, cruel mother nature over all that time. Sympathy only gets in the way of progress. Perfect example: Wolves do not suffer from hip dysplasia. Can you say that about man's best friend? Another example: AIDS resistance in humans is now being documented in northern Africa (less because of sympathy, than because the sympathetic outpouring couldn't treat the disease. Either way, same end result.).

Yes, warnings have saved some people, right up until the next generation grows up and expects warning labels to tell them everything to be careful of... common sense no longer necessary. Have you read the first few pages of a lawnmower's instruction manual? "Caution, blades sharp." "Caution, do not put fingers or toes under mower deck when mower running." "Caution, ..." It's ridiculous, and that's the way everything the government gets a hold of goes. Taxe code? Ha!

Last example... people running red lights. 10-15 years ago when north/southbound traffice got a red light the east/westbound traffic immediately got a green light. This worked fine for quite a while, until people began running red lights. So the length of yellow lights was increased in an effort to increase safety. This worked for a while, then people began running red lights again so a delay was instituted between the change of one direction to red and the counter-direction to green. This again worked for a while, until people realized the delay was present and that they could enter the intersection even just after the light changed and make it through. Now they've increased the delay between light changes even more, and again it worked for a while, until people realized the delay was longer so they'd be even more brazen about running the red light. It's already illegal to enter the intersection after the light has turned red, so what more regulation is needed to fix that problem? Maybe instill more common sense in drivers? Maybe shorten the lights back to how they were and let some people learn a proper lesson? We cannot regulate people into intelligence.
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Originally Posted by vansmith View Post
You were talking about the federal credit rating and I responded by talking about financial institutions. It was entirely relevant.
We can keep taking these hop, skips, and jumps to see where we end up, but I'm guessing it'd be a long way from Apple and Amazon by the time we got done! lol I managed to bring up evolution in my reply. I can't wait to see where you take it now.
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I think it was pretty well known that Amazon was losing several dollars on every new bestseller eBook they sold (Article from '09 touching on Amazon's losses.).
Yes, which is why I said they sell "some" ebooks at a loss. Thing is, the general public (myself included until recently) thinks they sell ALL ebooks at a loss because of statements like "...Amazon was selling books at a loss to stifle competition." As it turns out, that's not true. They just have some loss leaders that seems to be a pretty common practice.

Quote:
Ok, I'll correct you. You're wrong. You can open any book in Safari and transfer it to iBooks, Marvin, Kindle, or whatever eBook reader you want to use. And even if Apple did restrict such a thing, let the demand drive their choices. Poor business practice = fewer purchases = lost revenue = changed business practices. (Look at the recent Microsoft XBox One announcement for examples of that!)
Fair enough, I was wrong then. I thought everything was sandboxed to the point you couldn't move downloads around like that. I've never really tried, although now that I think about it, I use a 3rd party browser (Mercury) instead of Safari, so maybe Mercury is what's hobbled? Or maybe it's just that I don't download anything via a browser on my iPad. I definitely don't do ebooks yet. Yeah yeah... I don't actually have a pony in this fight, but I'm arguing against Apple more on the principle of how I want to be able to use my iPad.


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Yes, which is why I said they sell "some" ebooks at a loss. Thing is, the general public (myself included until recently) thinks they sell ALL ebooks at a loss because of statements like "...Amazon was selling books at a loss to stifle competition." As it turns out, that's not true. They just have some loss leaders that seems to be a pretty common practice.
My statement was true, and I stand behind it. I didn't say they were selling all books at a loss. In fact, it was never disclosed how many books they were losing money on, but it was AT LEAST the bestsellers (And what books do people most commonly buy? The ones that are selling the best!). They were creating an ecosystem and expectation of bestsellers having a price-point that was not sustainable to new companies trying to enter the market, or even to compete. This stifled new competition because who would buy a book for $15 when you could, with a couple mouse clicks and key taps, buy it for $10. This is very different from Best Buy or some other brick and mortar store having a Black Friday sale with a couple loss leaders, and then only having a couple of those inventory items in stock - "while supplies last." Amazon was selling, at minimum, all books in a market with very high sales volumes (definition of "bestsellers") with no limit on inventory. This would be akin to Best Buy selling every Sony TV in stock at below their price, and not limiting it to stock on hand. Who could compete with that?

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Fair enough, I was wrong then. I thought everything was sandboxed to the point you couldn't move downloads around like that. I've never really tried, although now that I think about it, I use a 3rd party browser (Mercury) instead of Safari, so maybe Mercury is what's hobbled? Or maybe it's just that I don't download anything via a browser on my iPad. I definitely don't do ebooks yet. Yeah yeah... I don't actually have a pony in this fight, but I'm arguing against Apple more on the principle of how I want to be able to use my iPad.
I've never used Mercury, but my guess is that it's a limitation of the programming of Mercury to not include API's for opening the files in other apps.

Nothing wrong with arguing for what you want/believe in.
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...

Ok, I'll correct you. You're wrong. You can open any book in Safari and transfer it to iBooks, Marvin, Kindle, or whatever eBook reader you want to use. ....
Ok, would really like to know how to open an ebook bought from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Apple, etc. or an online ebook rental from your local Library in Safari without using their specified app and then move it to whichever reader app you want to use and without circumventing the DRM contained in each of those formats.

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I want to interject a slightly off-topic plug here

Baen Ebooks

Baen Books (SF Publishing House) sells all their eBooks DRM free, and they allow you to redownload if you need to change reader format.
I have no connection with them, but they are my first choice for buying eBooks. They also have an extensive free library worth looking at.

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Baen - Great Sci-Fi house

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Originally Posted by RavingMac View Post
I want to interject a slightly off-topic plug here

Baen Ebooks

Baen Books (SF Publishing House) sells all their eBooks DRM free, and they allow you to redownload if you need to change reader format.
I have no connection with them, but they are my first choice for buying eBooks. They also have an extensive free library worth looking at.
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Baen - Great Sci-Fi house
Now you guys have my attention! I've been considering getting a Kobo ereader (the Aura HD) and I've always been partial to science fiction. I will definitely have to keep this place in mind. Much appreciated for the heads up!


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Definitely try their free library. Lots of older Dave Weber titles there.

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Watch out! Baen is addictive...
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Originally Posted by bobtomay View Post
Ok, would really like to know how to open an ebook bought from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Apple, etc. or an online ebook rental from your local Library in Safari without using their specified app and then move it to whichever reader app you want to use and without circumventing the DRM contained in each of those formats.
Circumvent DRM? No. Purchase non-DRM titles in Safari on the iPad and open them in your e-reader of choice? Absolutely. Circumventing DRM is an entirely different discussion that you can't do on ANY tablet at this point, so that's not really relevant to this discussion. And RavingMac beat me to it... Baen Ebooks sells DRM-free titles which you can simply purchase in Safari on the iPad and then open up in your e-reader. The whole point of DRM is to stop that from happening, so good luck seeing a big manufacturer having a way to do that baked right in to their OS.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RavingMac View Post
I want to interject a slightly off-topic plug here

Baen Ebooks

Baen Books (SF Publishing House) sells all their eBooks DRM free, and they allow you to redownload if you need to change reader format.
I have no connection with them, but they are my first choice for buying eBooks. They also have an extensive free library worth looking at.
I do love David Weber's work. I'm just a few books from finishing the entire Honor Harrington universe, and I'm patiently waiting for the next Safehold book (due out in January I believe).
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