When the iPad launched in Australia earlier this year – delayed and delayed after the US release – it did so without one of its ‘revolutionary’ features: iBook purchases. Now, local publishers appear to have gotten on board, with a range of new books added to the platform to sit alongside the free Project Gutenberg titles.
Apple is yet to officially announce the arrival of paid books, but if you open iBooks on your iPad or iPhone (itself a free download from the App Store), you’ll see some of the newly-available titles. The range is relatively limited currently, but there is a good selection of Australian titles from John Howard’s autobiography Lazarus Rising to the John Marsden Tomorrow series.
While many of the titles are also available via Amazon’s Kindle e-book platform (and possibly come in a bit cheaper thanks to the current exchange rate), it’s good to have a localised store to access new Australian and international titles.
The iBookstore is appearing as expected on the iPhone, but has some bugs on the iPad. If you open the app and see only free content on the Featured page, tap on Release Date, and once that page has opened, tap back on Featured. You’ll see all the featured books that Apple presumably wants you to know about once it gets around to announcing the store’s opening.