eBook Selection Comparison for Amazon, Barnes&Noble and Sony

I’ve received an interesting press release this morning from Social Trade LLC about http://ebookchoice.com/. It’s a new website that compares ebook availability and pricing across Amazon Kindle, Barnes&Noble and Sony PRS ebook stores. Personally I think that this website is a great idea. eBook selection is in my opinion the #1 feature of eBook reader. After all what good is an eReader if you can’t read your favorite books on it. ebookchoice.com gives customers the ability to quickly compare ebook selection before they decide which device to buy.

Along with the press release they’ve provided some interesting statistics about availability of certain books and their pricing:

Amazon, Barnes&Noble and Sony bestseller availability breakdown
Amazon, Barnes&Noble and Sony bestseller availability breakdown

As you can see the coverage for these selected book sets is similar with Amazon having a slight advantage. Of 326 books represented in this table 145 are available on Amazon Kindle, 134 you could find in Barnes&Noble store and 135 on Sony PRS-600. ebookchoice.com did another comparison that included 504 prize-winning fiction and non-fiction books from the past few decades. In this comparison Amazon Kindle came out a little bit ahead of the competition as well with 191 books available, followed by Sony with 175 books, Barnes and Noble had 167 books available.

It could and should be much better. Ideally the coverage should be 100%.

Amazon, Barnes&Noble, Sony eBook price distributions
Amazon, Barnes&Noble, Sony eBook price distributions

These picture pretty much speaks for itself. Amazon and B&N have similar average price but B&N has a bit more variance while Amazon sticks to $9.99 price point. Sony is a bit more expensive on average and has even more variance in prices.

The website itself is still work in progress though: as I’ve tried to use it this morning, some pages would show MySQL errors and I could only see links to Amazon Kindle books. The coverage is not 100% complete either. I’ve tried searching for Frank Herbert’s “Dune” that I have on my Kindle and ebookchoice.com didn’t have a clue the book existed at all. I believe that these quirks will be worked out with time and the website will realize it’s full potential and become a truly useful and comprehensive resource.

5 thoughts on “eBook Selection Comparison for Amazon, Barnes&Noble and Sony”

  1. I searched for sci fi and fantasy on this website and absolutely nothing came up except a few very obscure books. I don’t think this website is ready to use and I’m not sure I trust their statistics, although they certainly are interesting.

  2. I am green to e-readers. If I buy a particular brand of e reader am I locked in to buying books from their download only?

  3. Annette,
    With Amazon – you are locked with Kindle.
    With Sony I guess you can use other DRM ePub-capable eReaders (not just Sony) but I’m not sure how it works in reality

  4. Annette,

    with the Kindle you are not limited to getting all your books from Amazon.

    the built-in store is limited to Amazon, but you can load other books via USB or e-mail to the kindle (at $0.15/MB for e-mail)

    I currently have ~250 e-books for my kindle, less than a quarter of them are from amazon.

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