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To wonder how on earth kindle books can be as much or more than printed books?

(38 Posts)
dollywashers Thu 22-Aug-13 21:41:15

Sorry for the long thread title. But how can some kindle books possibly cost so much. I just don't get it. Surely they should cost significantly less than books?

CorrieDale Thu 22-Aug-13 21:42:26

I think vat has something to do with it.

ihearsounds Thu 22-Aug-13 21:45:22

I dont get it either. I'm sure when I bought my ebook years ago, they were sold on the basis that ebooks would be cheaper etc. But not always the case. It's also amazing that retailers vary costs so much, and just like actual books you have to shop around..The other thing that annoys me at times as well is that at least with actual books you can flog them when you have finished with them.

badguider Thu 22-Aug-13 21:47:10

it costs almost nothing per book to print a paper copy, you're paying for the intellectual property really plus marketing and publishing/editing etc.

Since e-books are subjec to vat at 20% i wouldn't be surprised at all that this cancels out the price of a paperback to be produced (they're ususally cheaper than hardbacks)

littlemisswise Thu 22-Aug-13 21:47:16

I think Corrie is right. Ebooks have vat on and printed books don't IIRC, so that's where 20% goes.

JeanPaget Thu 22-Aug-13 21:47:20

Yep, VAT is payable on e-books but not paper books. Also, a large % of the cost of books is paying the author/publisher, not just pure printing costs.

TBH although I've seen a kindle version cost the same as a paperback, I've never seen one cost more.

There's certainly been some issues with Apple being accused of price fixing e-books though...

JeanPaget Thu 22-Aug-13 21:48:09

Sorry, that was a bit of cross post.

dollywashers Thu 22-Aug-13 21:51:29

Oh I didn't know that about VAT. Recently come across two books on amazon that were more than the printed version.

ilovesooty Thu 22-Aug-13 21:53:35

Yes, it's the VAT. If you look on the Amazon site at the smaller print they tell you.

HazelnutinCaramel Thu 22-Aug-13 21:57:38

It's the VAT plus the publisher still has to pay for editing, production, marketing, distribution etc. and not forgetting the author, who will want the same royalty as a print version.

Lazyjaney Thu 22-Aug-13 22:34:39 there is a cartel now and suckers will pay those amounts.

whois Thu 22-Aug-13 22:37:28

To pay the author, published, distributor.

It's not like it actually costs £8.99 to print a poor quality paperback.

comingalongnicely Thu 22-Aug-13 22:37:28

It's absolute rubbish and it's holding E-Books back.

All books nowadays are written, stored & printed from computers. Why would you pay the same for an E-book as you would for a paper one? I certainly don't!! The E-book removes any need for the publisher to print, store, stock etc. It's a con. The authors get next to nothing of the sale price in either case, which is why many of them now release their own books online and skip the publisher.

If you have no conscience you can always download a libraries worth of 80's & 90's bookd from Pirate Bay in 20 minutes anyway.

Mimishimi Thu 22-Aug-13 22:37:55

I think the price has increased as more people are using them whereas before it was still an unknown markets.Presumably it does cost quite a bit to get people to put them in digital form as well.

Lazysuzanne Thu 22-Aug-13 22:45:53

alot of the time you can get a used copy on amazon for one penny (plus £2.80 postage) I rarely buy kindle book, I just use it to download samples to see if I'm likely to want to read the book

Phlojo Thu 22-Aug-13 22:49:22

I use my kindle almost exclusively for out-of-copyright and heavily discounted titles. If I have to pay the price of a book, I want a book.

mummytime Thu 22-Aug-13 22:53:57

Its also the publishers, they want to charge just as much for ebooks, to encourage people to keep buying paper ones. They also pay the Authors pretty much exactly the same for ebooks as paper ones, so they make far more profit. The VAT is relatively little although it can explain why ebooks can cost more.

MuddlingMackem Thu 22-Aug-13 23:01:33

YANBU. I was thinking this myself just the other day.

I refuse to pay full paperback price for a digital version, if I'm shelling out that kind of money then, like Phlojo I want a real book to put on my bookshelf.

Even allowing for VAT and the intellectual property rights, ebooks don't cost in transportation costs, storage costs, paper costs or printing costs so no way should they cost the same as a paperback.

Sallyingforth Thu 22-Aug-13 23:18:17

I'm shelling out that kind of money then, like Phlojo I want a real book to put on my bookshelf.
That's all very well, but how many books can you slip into your handbag on a plane?

fackinell Thu 22-Aug-13 23:39:07

Amazon takes 75% fee of books under the price of £1.99. The Authors have to stay above that if they want a decent share. No excuse for an ebook being much more than that though.

OnTheBottomWithAWomensWeekly Fri 23-Aug-13 00:05:02

you can download brand new books from tuebl, or from your local library (probably). There is little need to buy pricey books from amazon.

GruffBillyGoat Fri 23-Aug-13 01:15:23

Have people had the same issue with Kobo? I buy all my books directly from them and have never paid more than $5, but then again as another poster mentioned on a different thread, books are really expensive in New Zealand.

If you are a fan of the classics then there are hundreds of free books available because their copyright has expired.

Swanlike Fri 23-Aug-13 01:39:12

Amazon and Apple will also usually take a fairly hefty percentage of the sale price of each ebook sold. Ebooks have their own production costs and do have storage and distribution costs and then there are additional costs which you don't have so much with printed books to prevent piracy and illegal file sharing.

MooncupGoddess Fri 23-Aug-13 07:36:33

The cost of printing a paperback is usually only 10% or so of the cover price... then maybe 5% for warehousing, shipping etc. So less than the 20% VAT charged on e-books.

Lazyjaney Fri 23-Aug-13 07:56:24

The US government has been taking Apple and major publishers to court on this, there is a cartel.

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