Do we need another eBook reader app? Google thinks so.

Posted: April 13, 2011 in Apple, apps, iPad, iphone, iPod, software, technology
Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

When I heard about Google Books, I figured I might as well check it out.  ( I should note its only available in the USA iTunes store, but thats not much of a deterrent to any mildly computer savvy person)  Most of their products are quite good so chances are it will be too, but in the back of my mind I couldn’t help think we’ve already got Apple iBooks, and the Kindle App, why do we need another?  What can Google bring to the table?

Well, at first glance its not originality or an easier interface.

You’d be hard pressed to figure out which reader app you are using when you launch it and dive into a book.  In a side-by-side comparison between it, the Kindle app or Apple’s own iBooks, there really is not much difference. (you can see a few screenshots of the Kindle app in an earlier blog post here )

Google Books user interface

cute see-thru pages

well laid out Settings page

The page turning is nice, seeing thru the page and reading it backwards as it turns is kinda fun.

Its a simple user interface, much like the others mentioned earlier.  And again, much the same as the others it disappears to leave you with a clean reading surface without the menubars or toolbars to distract or tear you away from your immersion in your fave book.

The “Aa” in the menu takes you to the settings page which allows you to change font, size, colour and line spacing.  The “night” setting is quite good if you prefer reading white text on a black screen.

As for getting more books on your device, thats easy.  Or at least it hopefully will be in the future, but right now, thats where it falls down for us canucks.

default loaded ebooks

damn you borders!

account settings page

When you try to go to the “Get eBbooks” you are greeted with a message stating they are not available in your location yet if you are not within the USA.

Looks like Google is taking a page from Apple’s playbook and making the rest of the world wait. (any iPad/iPhone users will know what i’m referring to there)  I’ve already read Frankenstein and Pride and Prejudice, so it seems i’m stuck with Wonderful Stories for Children until Google opens the virtual borders to us poor cousins to the north.  Until then, I’m not sure about availability of books, number of books in the Google library or how much books are going to cost.  So it is back to iBooks and Kindle for me and the rest of you Canadians, at least for now.


  1. Paul Barker says:

    if you are wondering how to get your own US iTunes account, the simple answer is find a friend in the US and set one up. Or find a free song redeem code for the US iTunes store (like this old post on ehmac suggest… or set up an account on your computer as this Apple KB article states…



  2. Simpletourist says:

    not even interested in the ones already on the market. Most certainly not interested in another


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