iPad iBookstore to Include Project Gutenberg Catalog?

AppAdvice has followed up their $9.99 bestseller sneak-peak with more screenshots they claim come from the pre-release iPad iBooks and iBookstore, this time indicating Apple is including that massive Project Gutenberg library of free eBook content right in the app.

We mentioned Project Gutenberg last week and it's 30,000 ePub-format, iBooks friendly public domain titles and figured Apple would just let you drag them into iTunes and move them on over to iBooks. This, however, would mean they're already linked and ready to download.

Whether or not the full catalog is there, or just some subset of popular or editorial choices is unknown, and indeed everything is subject to change before the iPad ships on April 3, but we're hoping this is true and stays put.

It would be the iBooks answer to iTunes' free podcast and iTunes U, and the App Store's free apps section. And t'would be glorious.

Rene Ritchie

Rene Ritchie is one of the most respected Apple analysts in the business, reaching a combined audience of over 40 million readers a month. His YouTube channel, Vector, has over 90 thousand subscribers and 14 million views and his podcasts, including Debug, have been downloaded over 20 million times. He also regularly co-hosts MacBreak Weekly for the TWiT network and co-hosted CES Live! and Talk Mobile. Based in Montreal, Rene is a former director of product marketing, web developer, and graphic designer. He's authored several books and appeared on numerous television and radio segments to discuss Apple and the technology industry. When not working, he likes to cook, grapple, and spend time with his friends and family.

  • It's the same exact thing Barnes and Noble and Kobo do. The majority of Gutenberg titles are also available as Google Books.
    At this point including free public domain titles has become a way to fluff numbers "LOOK, we have 1 MILLION TITLES (999,998 of which are public domain.)"
  • I hope its compatible with my Mahoney and Tackleberry editions
  • Unlike Google books, many of which are poorly scanned and of questionable value, the Gutenberg library tends to be the best of the past, well written, and very clean. The last one I read on my nook was Dead Men Tell no Tales by Hornung, and it has no more than 5 scan errors in the entire book.
    That these are available on the iPad would not be new news, since they are available using Stanza, or the B&N reader, or the EReader apps, which presumably will work on the ipad. They are also freely available for download in any number of formats.
    What remains to be seen is if the iPad will allow in-app purchases of books from B&N or Amazon, and others, or if Apple is going to reserve this functionality for themselves.
    Having purchased a few books on my iPhone, the process is not onerous, but could be cleaner with in-app purchases.
    Still, reading on a backlit device for hours on end will not prove as popular as many here anticipate. It is hard on the eyes, and the iPad does not have the battery life to support it. Not planning to ditch my nook with it's eInk screen any time soon. I've totally given up reading on the iPhone since I got the nook.
  • Icebike I agree. Backlite hurts