With rumors of an Apple tablet picking up momentum by the week, many have been quick to proclaim that the as of yet unreleased tablet will be a Kindle killer, with some speculation focusing on whether or not Apple might even launch an iTunes store for e-books.
With the iPhone app store already heavily populated with e-book readers and their accompanying marketplaces, it makes little to no sense for Apple to throw resources at a project in order to compete with apps that already handle all of Apple’s dirty work. Apple cares more about developers creating e-book apps for the iPhone, and perhaps tablet, than it does about actually being the driving creative force behind an e-book marketplace.
And putting the final nail in the Apple/e-bookstore speculation comes a report from Dan Frommer of Silicon Alley Insider who recently spoke to a well-placed source within the e-book business. According to the report, Frommer is all but 100% sure that third party e-book sellers such as Amazon and Barns & Nobles will be left to their own devices to duke it out for e-book supremacy. And as long as people keep purchasing iPhones, Apple could probably care less about who comes out victorious.
Also, e-books, at least for now, occupy a niche within the iTunes App Store, and Apple doesn’t really deal with niches. As Steve Jobs famously said, “People don’t read anymore”, and until reading becomes as big of an online business as music is, I’m sure that Jobs and Apple will gladly sit this round out.