Amazon May Launch Netflix-Style Book Service as Part of Amazon Prime

Chris CrumBusiness

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Rumor has it that Amazon is in talks with publishers about the potential launch of a Netflix-like service for digital books. Actually, it sounds like it would simply be added on to a service the company is already offering.

Amazon currently offers access to digital movies and TV shows, along with two-day shipping as part of its Amazon Prime service. This costs $79 a year. According to a report from the Wall Street Journal, the company is considering adding this book service to this product. It would feature access to a library of older titles.

The report cites "people familiar with the matter," and there is not a whole lot more in the way of details, other than the notion that publishers are a little skeptical about the concept.

Amazon has already been bolstering its media library ahead of a pending tablet launch, which will square off against Apple's iPad. Last month, over 100,000 new titles were added to Amazon Instant Video.

“We are focused on offering our customers the very best selection and are always working to expand our already extensive list of great video content,” said Steve Oliver, director of video at Amazon.

It stands to reason that the digital book list will continue to grow rapidly thanks to Amazon's popular Kindle platform, and the ease with which authors can use it to get their works published. Not to mention the huge pool of potential readers. One in five Internet users visited Amazon sites in June.

Sales of Kindle devices were also accelerated last quarter. In its last earnings report, Amazon reported that the U.S. Kindle Store had over 950,000 books, including new releases and 110 of 111 New York Times Bestsellers.

Chris Crum

Chris Crum has been a part of the WebProNews team and the iEntry Network of B2B Publications since 2003. Follow Chris on Twitter, on StumbleUpon, on Pinterest and/or on Google: +Chris Crum.