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eBook Knowledge Center

Advantages of eBooks over Print books:

  • They occupy less space than a print book i.e., an eReader (at the size of print book) can hold thousands of eBooks. EBooks can also be downloaded from the internet and read from the device.
  • E-Readers are compact so they can be carried anywhere.
  • Assistive technologies like text to speech. Screen readers are available in eBooks and thus they can be helpful to people with disabilities (Print books lack these facilities).
  • Multimedia support. eBooks can contain embedded audio and video which print books cannot contain.
  • Search facility and linked content for easy navigation and dictionaries for finding meanings of words quickly.
  • When an e-book is returned, it goes back into circulation immediately with no time spent waiting for the user to return it. Ebooks spend no time in a book drop waiting to be checked in and no time waiting to be shelved. And there is no staff time or cost required for check in, check out, or shelving not to mention shelf reading.
  • eBooks can be used immediately but some waiting is necessary for print books.

What is the difference between a fixed-layout and reflowable eBook?

Fixed-layout or sometimes referred to as pixel perfect layout is a layout technique where pagination is fixed and text is positioned on a page rather than allowed to reflow (adapt to screen size). Fixed-layout files resemble PDFs (source file supplied) where text is positioned precisely on a page by the creator. They are suitable for Children Books, Comic Books, Magazines, manga, tour guides etc., where position of text, background art are very important. Where as in a reflowable format, text takes up the available space on the device (reflows or adapts).

Is ISBN necessary for my eBook?

You need not require an ISBN to publish your book via KDP (Kindle Direct Publishing). Amazon assigns a 10 digit unique identification number called ASIN (Amazon Standard Identification Number) while publishing. However, it is required to publish your book on Apple iBookstore. It should also be noted that print ISBN cannot be used for eBooks. They must be purchased separately for eBooks if you intend to use one.

What is DRM and do my Books need DRM?

DRM stands for Digital Rights Management. It is a way to protect copyrighted content by embedding a code directly into the eBook. It can also be applied to Movies, Music etc. There are disadvantages associated with DRM. The buyer may not be able to read the eBook on other eReader (or may be able to read the eBook only on limited number of devices), cannot print or share the file. You may decide to use DRM or not by taking the above disadvantages into account. All the major retailers like Apple, Amazon and B & N allow you to use their own DRMs while publishing through them. Also note that DRM can be broken/cracked at the user end even if it’s applied.