Amazon Grabs Major e-Book Win
Get ready for $9.99 e-books
By Matt Cantor, Newser User
Posted Sep 7, 2012 9:08 AM CDT
In this Sept. 28, 2011 file photo, the Kindle Fire is displayed at a news conference, in New York.   (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)

(Newser) – An e-book price-fixing settlement is a victory for Amazon—and could pave the way to lower prices for consumers. A federal judge has approved a settlement between three publishers and the Justice Department after officials argued that a total of five publishers were teaming up with Apple to boost prices and limit Amazon's ability to discount them. Now, Amazon will be able to cut prices to earlier levels—around $9.99, or cheaper. That could exert serious pressure on the entire market, experts tell the New York Times.

"Everybody competing with Amazon in the e-book market had better fasten their seat belts," says a publishing consultant. Now, the three publishers in the settlement— HarperCollins, Simon & Schuster, and Hachette—must terminate their Apple contracts and any other deals that prevent retailers from setting prices. The publishers also face a two-year "cooling-off period" in which they can't sign new deals with similar restrictions. Two other publishers, plus Apple itself, refused to join in the settlement, meaning a trial next summer. The losers in all this? Independent bookstores, says an Authors Guild leader, who will struggle even more to compete with lowered prices.

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Sep 7, 2012 11:12 AM CDT
I will say one thing, not in defense of apple, but this mass produced bottom dollar shopping thing with products we don't need to survive we all seem to love do only benefits a very small percentage of people. I know we all want cheap e-books, but it aint like all that money is going back into our economy. Sure what apple was doing here was a bit jerky but, it isn't like this is good vs evil here, it's high price fixing for the sake of rich men's pockets vs low price market flooding for the sake of rich men's pockets. Anyone ever wonder, if the money we spent, wasn't so bottom dollar on everything, and coorporations were just a tincy bit regulated, this economy would be boomtastic? Stop buying online, go buy from your local businesses, yes that means shelling out more money for your books. But you get know high five from me for saying "WAY TO GO AMAZON, STICK IT TO APPLE" Cause it aint like Amazon is the answer to anything except cheaper for cheapest.
Sep 7, 2012 11:01 AM CDT
Apple is the new Microsoft.
Sep 7, 2012 9:40 AM CDT
There will always be printed books worth buying. I'm not sure we ever needed whatevermillion copies of harry potter and now hunger games though.