Apple CEO Steve Jobs cooking up iBook (Amazon Kindle killer)?

Apple Online Store“Steve Jobs, mercurial CEO of Apple Inc., recently gave an interview to the NY Times. In the interview Jobs shared his thoughts on a number of things including Google’s Android and Amazon’s Kindle e-book reader. When talking about the Kindle, Jobs came out and announced that Apple was busy working on a competitor to the Kindle,” Jim Lynch writes for ExtremeTech. “Here’s the relevant quote from the interview:”

Today he had a wide range of observations on the industry, including the Amazon Kindle book reader, which he said would go nowhere largely because Americans have stopped reading. “It doesn’t matter how good or bad the product is, the fact is that people don’t read anymore,” he said. “Forty percent of the people in the U.S. read one book or less last year. The whole conception is flawed at the top because people don’t read anymore.”

Lynch writes, “If you’re at all familiar with Jobs, that comment is a dead giveaway that Apple has an eBook reader in the pipeline. In the past, Jobs has made disparaging comments about competitor’s products as a smoke-screen to try and hide what Apple was busily working on behind the scenes.”

“Mark my words, if Jobs denigrates a market segment or a competitor’s product then there’s a good chance that Apple is cooking up something sweet and delicious in its kitchen, and you can bet that Jobs is the head chef in charge of it all,” Lynch writes.

“As we all know, Macbooks have replaced the old ‘iBook’ laptops that Apple used to sell. Hmmm…so it’s quite interesting that the word ‘iBook’ is now free for Apple to use as the name of their eBook reader,” Lynch writes. “A coincidence? I doubt it very much.”

Much more in the full article, including Lynch’s discussion of an Apple eBook reader software release for iPod and iPhone, here.


  1. Jim Lynch.

    Yet another tech writer asshat. These idiots are in to reading tea leaves and making up complete bullshit out of thin air.

    No, asshat, I am NOT going to mark your word for anything. Leave what you are doing and collect garbage … literally.

  2. It’s great that Apple owns the name “iBook.” But I don’t think Apple will release a device that is dedicated to reading books. Carry around yet another separate device? Apple wants the iPhone to be the ONE device everyone carries with them.

    Now, I’ve read books on my old b/w Handspring Visor. If Apple wanted to enter this market, it would just include ebook-reader software for the inevitable “tablet” (bigger screen) version of the iPod touch / iPhone. Even the current size screen would be fine for reading ebooks, since shorter lines of text makes for faster reading.

  3. iPhone and iPod Touch (and possibly the fabled tablet) will have ebook software when the SDK is released. Also, he said they changed iBook to MacBook because they wanted Mac in the name of all their computers. Makes perfect sense. No smoke screen whatsoever.

    As someone who reads, though, I would like to see ebooks available for iPhone through iTunes. May not be a large enough market though, as SJ pointed out.

  4. @prophet

    I don’t know about you, but I really wouldn’t like to try reading a book on a 3.5″ screen.

    Something similar to an iPod Touch with a 7″-9″ screen would be good, but I don’t know what battery life would be with a larger screen. I would be really pissed if I was on one of my regular 14 hour flights from NY to Hong Kong and the battery died halfway there. I’d be stuck flipping through a SkyMall catalog for 7 hours.

    However, as something like this would do double duty as a video player, maybe there’s a market.

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