News, commentary, and fiction by Barb Hendee, co-author of the Noble Dead saga (www.NobleDead.org); author of the Mist-Torn Witches series, the Vampire Memories series, and more.

The Apple [Re-]Experiment

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HW1We’ve decided to give Apple another try as an additional vendor for Tales from the world of the Noble Dead Saga, though this latest re-experiment still raises some red flags. Apple’s software approach to delivering ebooks to their store is rather burdensome and convoluted; it puts this attempt at risk in a specific way, but Homeward, I: The Game Piece is now available though the iTunes store.

PURCHASE AT: Amazon.com [AZW/KINDLE] BarnesandNoble.com [EPUB/NOOK] KoboBooks.com [EPUB] iTunes.Apple.com

You will need to have iTunes installed on  your computer or use an iOS device for the Apple/iTunes (lower-right) link to work. Of course you can also go through your installed iTunes and search out the title in the books section. If no price wars are started across our chosen vendors, we will continue by putting up the rest of our “Tales” on the iTunes store. So, why are we concerned about a potential price war? Well…

  1. Apple does not allow direct publishing authors to set a specific price for an ebook; all of our other chosen vendors do so.
  2. Apple uses what they call “tiers” that set a specific price for each tier; none of our other chosen vendor do this.
  3. The tier prices are very old school and do not match the set, clean, price point we use across all other chosen vendors.

At the iTunes portal, we must choose a “tier” for pricing based on the old “.99” advertising trick; not so at our other chosen vendors. You know the trick where instead of just a straight $3.00 you list “$2.99” so that first number makes people feel as if they are paying less. Yeah, right, we don’t fall for that either, so we don’t use it on our readers. But we’re stuck with it at the iTunes/Apple online store.

Our other vendors do not lower our set prices on their own. The only clause in our contracts with them that allow them to do so is if another vendor carrying our products offers the same product at a lower price. Whether or not one cent difference at iTunes will cause a cascading price war, where other vendors have the right to offer an even lower price.. and lower and lower as they try to outdo each other… is yet to be seen. That’s what happened in barely 4 hours when Google Books changed the price our very first (and last) listing with them. If it happens again, we will have to reverse and pull all offerings at iTunes.

So fingers crossed and we’ll see how it goes. For now, those of you who prefer to use Apple technology and applications can purchase our earliest Tales release and tell us how it goes.

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