Amazon, Barnes & Noble announce iPad app plans

Book publishers are getting ready for a battle of the iPad apps, with Amazon and Barnes & Noble already developing their own apps.

Despite not having any access to the giant iPhone-like device, developers from companies big and small are planning their apps for the iPad. Apple has released the software needed to build the apps, which can be used on a Mac.

However the real fight of the competing apps come from the eBook and publishing sector, where things could get ugly. and Barnes & Noble are reportedly both working on apps for buying and reading electronic books on the iPad, even though both companies sell their own e-reading devices and Apple will offer its own iBooks app.

According to The New York Times Barnes & Noble’s 14-strong digital unit has been working on creating an iPad app from the company’s already existing iPhone app.

Barnes & Noble’s vice president of digital products, Douglas Gottlieb, told the NYT that the app will let users flip through books quickly with finger swipes, as well as customise fonts in a variety of colours and sizes. Mr. Gottlieb said the company was talking to other publishers about adding multimedia to digital books

Amazon’s Kindle app for the iPad is pretty similar and also lets users turn pages with their fingers, according to the NYT. But this has been met with more hysteria online, where idiots fail to recognize that just because Amazon id developing an app for the iPad, it’s not telling you not to buy the Kindle.

Both Amazon and Barnes & Noble will be running against the app demoed three weeks ago by Penguin where, you guessed it, you can turn pages by sliding your finger.

“The iPad represents the first real opportunity to create a paid distribution model that will be attractive to consumers”, said Penguin CEO John Makinson at demo. “The psychology of payment on tablets is different to the psychology on a PC”. Translated, that essentially means: “people don’t know they can steal stuff on a tablet, yet”.

A Penguin representative told TechEye today “It’s all good! As many entry points into reading as possible I say..”

The iPad will be available from 3rd April from all the usual Apple places. Follow someone with a black shirt and poor taste if unsure where to go.