I hate to say it but, as much of a gadget-lover as I am, I've never been a fan of reading books on my computer or E-Reader. There's something about the feel and full, earthy smell of a real, honest-to-goodness paper book that no gadget has yet been able to match. That's why I still do all of my book shopping at real book stores.
Fortunately for Google, most of the world doesn't share my bizarre love of antiquated reading technology. When their new book store launches in the first half of next year (Yahoo! Tech) there will be close to half a million Google Editions for sale. In true Google form, once purchased users will be able to access their books on any electronic device with access to the Internet. Your book purchases will be stored with your Gmail account.
After you access your new books for the first time, you won't even need to be online to read them. I don't want to sound like I'm showing favoritism, but Google's new service sounds like a much better deal than Amazon's. If I buy a Google Edition of Steven Brust's "To Reign In Hell" I'll be able to access it on my G1, my desktop, my netbook, or even my Archos 5. That's great convenience, coupled with what's soon to be the best selection of any online book store in the world.
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Again, I'm firmly dedicated to paper books, but this still sounds like a fantastic idea to me. Giving more people easier access to great books whenever they want them is unquestionably a Good Thing. Keep on keepin' on, Google.