Sony Reader Team Up With Google Books & The Dylan Thomas PrizeWritten by Helen Lynch on July 28, 2010 · Filed under Tech
Last week Sony UK announced a literary double whammy by not only unveiling their own category in this year’s Dylan Thomas Prize – the Sony Reader Award for Unpublished Writers, but also launching a new public domain ebooks collaboration with Google, with access to over 500,000 free titles.
The Dylan Thomas Prize is an annual international award for published fiction writers under 30 and the new Sony Reader award aims to acknowledge unpublished authors of the same age group. Submissions are requested in ebook format and the winner’s book will be published on the Sony Reader platform. There is also a £5,000 cash prize.
Sony Reader Award for Unpublished Writers submissions close on 31st August and the winner will be announced at the Dylan Thomas Prize Award Ceremony in December.
While not quite as exciting for undiscovered talents, the new Google Books platform on the Sony Reader website offers eReader users a huge catalogue of free content, which is searchable by author, title and ISBN number. The eBooks are available in standard open EPUB format to allow for optimal viewing on Sony’s range of ebook devices while also being compatible with many other eReaders.
Added to Sony’s bookstore and their existing free catalogues, such as Project Gutenberg and local library rentals, this seriously improves the content choices for Reader owners, taking titles available to well over 600,000! By comparison, Amazon and their Kindle ebook reading devices currently offer around 400,000 English language books, not including newspaper and magazine subscriptions, while the iPad iBookstore offers “tens of thousands of titles”.
Abraham Murray, the product manager for Google Books said “We created Google Books with the vision that everyone around the globe should have the tools to explore the great published works of mankind. Working with Sony to bring public domain books to a broader audience is exciting because we believe open platforms for discovering and reading books are important, both culturally and technologically.”
It’s good to see such commitment to public domain publishing. Combined with their range of colour options on the Sony Reader series as well as expandable memory, dictionary and annotation tools and touchscreen functionality, Sony are proving their commitment to the electronic bookworms of the world.