Google has launched Google eBooks in the US, a platform to sell digital books which will be seen as a direct opponent to Amazon.
The success of the Amazon Kindle has shown the appetite for eBooks, and Google's ongoing project to digitise every book has proven headline grabbing – not always for the right reasons.
But the search giant is now keen to leverage its massive audience in the eBook world – with Google eBooks allowing people (in the US, for now) to find and buy books from the Google eBookstore.
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It had been thought that Google would name its digital book store Google Editions - but has now plumped for Google eBooks
Discover and buy
"With Google eBooks, readers can discover and buy books from the Google eBookstore or get them from one of our independent bookseller partners," blogged Google Books product manager Abraham Murray.
"Whether you buy a Google eBook from Google or from an online bookseller, they are all stored in your online library.
"With Google eBooks, you can read books on devices from laptops to netbooks to tablets to smartphones to e-readers.
"Using the new Google eBooks Web Reader, you can buy, store and read Google eBooks in the cloud. That means you can access your ebooks like you would messages in Gmail -- using a free, password-protected Google account with unlimited ebooks storage.
"Being able to access your books from anywhere means that it doesn't matter what device you're using."
At the current time Google will only say that it is hoping to bring Google eBooks and the Google eBookstore to the UK next year.