Amazon launches new subscription service
After witnessing growing interest in paid content in China, Amazon Kindle officially unveiled a new subscription service on Tuesday that offers all-you-can-read digital books for 12 yuan ($1.84) per month.
The service called Kindle Unlimited gives Chinese subscribers access to more than 44,000 e-books. Subscribers can read the e-books on any Kindle device or any device, including smartphones and tablet computers, with Amazon’s Kindle app installed.
The service is aimed to provide Chinese customers a more flexible way to read and to foster China’s nascent e-book market, said Gu Fan, the head of Kindle content product management at Amazon China.
Amazon launched its Kindle e-book store in China in December 2012. It saw the number of active paid readers per month shoot up about 37 times by the end of 2015.
The Kindle Unlimited service was launched when China saw a drop in the number of books being read by its people.
Zhu Ning, an economist, who recently published a book named The Guaranteed Bubble, said the number of books read by Chinese people is “embarrassingly low”.
However, for the sustainable development of the subscription service, Kindle needs to get more publishers and authors to participate.
Zou Jihua, director of digital media division of China South Booky Culture Media Co Ltd, a Tianjin-based publisher, saw partnering with Kindle more of a way of marketing books rather than directly making big money by selling e-books.