Thursday, February 14, 2013

Inkling makes its Google-friendly digital publishing tools free to everyone

By  - Feb 12, 2013 - paidContent

Inkling habitat Campbell Biology
photo: Inkling
Summary: ProChef InklingStarting Tuesday, Inkling is making its free digital publishing platform, Habitat, available to everyone. The company is also introducing an enterprise product, with publishers including Pearson and Wolters-Kluwer as launch clients.
Inkling has spent three years and $30 million to build Inkling Habitat, a cloud-based set of digital publishing tools that let users create and collaborate on high-quality, interactive ebooks. Last year, the San Francisco-based startup opened the platform up to a few publishers. Starting Tuesday, it is available to anybody for free and includes the
Google search integration that Inkling launched in January.

In Inkling Habitat, the company’s founder and CEO, Matt MacInnis, sees an opportunity to take the digital reading revolution beyond Amazon and Kindle. He believes Amazon is totally reliant on text-based titles that make up only a fraction of the total book publishing market, and calls Apple’s iBooks Author — free software that’s supposed to let anyone create interactive ebooks for the iBookstore — a flop. “Our message to the industry is that the first bit of digital publishing was great,” he told me, “but the real stuff is just beginning.” It’s early days for Inkling, which has only 400 titles in its store so far compared to Amazon’s millions of Kindle titles. But MacInnis is convinced that the next step is illustrated: Textbooks, travel guides, cookbooks, how-to books, and so on. And it’s this area, he believes, where Inkling — not Amazon — will dominate.

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