Google Books has been part of the core experience of what Google offers to consumers looking for media through their services. It was recently thrown together with music, movies and apps into the Google Play store. One of the lesser known ways to acquire eBooks through Google was through a reseller program. That program will remain a lesser known option as its being discontinued.
The announcement was made on the Google Books blog today that the company is Google+Book+Search%29">discontinuing its reseller program. They claim that it had "not gained the traction we hoped it would" and will be phasing it out by the end of January next year.
That may be one reason, but it also sounds like the move to Google Play may have played a factor into the decision as well. Google Play seems to be Google's bid at centralizing all of their services into one place to better compete with Apple's iTunes marketplace. Providing eBooks from one location, instead of many, would help to decrease confusion over eBook sources.
There were 16 reseller partners within the Google Books program and Google says that they will be "working closely" with them "as they transition in the coming months." Regular booksellers will remain unaffected and they will still be highlighted when users search for a book. They will also still have access to Google's affiliate program and free Books API.
While Google does not share what the "results-to-date" are for the reseller program, the company says that they have not met the needs of "many readers or booksellers." Google will also being ending their role as an eBooks wholesaler, but will still be "committed as ever to making the eBooks experience from Google the best it can be for readers around the world."
Did you use the reseller program? If so, how does this news affect you? Let us know in the comments.