In the Wall Street Journal (Feb 11), JEFFREY A. TRACHTENBERG has an article about an experiment by Random House to begin selling books one chapter at a time. This seems to follow the model that has become popular in the music industry.
Random House Publishing Group’s experiment appears to be the first time a major consumer publisher has offered a title on a chapter-by-chapter basis. It will sell the six chapters and epilogue of “Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die” for $2.99 each.
The move comes at a time when retailers and publishers are looking for clues into how readers want to access digital content. Most recently, Amazon Inc. announced that it was buying audiobook seller Audible Inc. for about $280 million. Late last year, Amazon introduced its Kindle electronic-book reader, a device with built-in wireless Internet access that quickly sold out upon debut.
Publishers are convinced that as it becomes easier to download books, and screen technology improves, an ever-larger number of readers will opt to receive digital content.