Amazon Acquires Lexcycle

Lexcycle announced today that it has been acquired by Amazon. Lexcycle is the developer of the popular iPhone app Stanza. While Lexcycle is currently promising no “changes in the Stanza application or user experience as a result of the acquisition,” I’m not sure I believe that. Am I still going to be able to download books for free from Project Gutenberg and Feedbooks? Why would Amazon want to continue developing Stanza, which could be seen as a direct competitor with their own Kindle app? I don’t have anything against Amazon, but it has been great to be able to download free classics like The Woman in White, Persuasion, and A Tale of Two Cities (among others I plan to read) in a perfectly readable format for free. After all, I can find them online for free. The format in Stanza makes the text more readable than using a computer to read. I would hate to see Stanza change, but I don’t see how it won’t. It doesn’t make sense to me for Amazon not to at least stop offering free books—they’re all about making a profit from reading, aren’t they?

One thought on “Amazon Acquires Lexcycle

  1. Hmmmm… I'm begining to feel like Amazon has the midas' touch of ebooks — if midas' touch was the swine flu instead of gold.

    Yes, I may be biased—but only because I enjoy my eBooks and every time I turn around amazon is doing something to undercut my reading experience.

    Their product is shoddy at best, and instead of improving it they have a pattern of monopolizing the business and killing technology that does work. I only hope they don't do this with Stanza….

    The thing I like about Stanza as is is the availability to purchase from a large amount of retailers–if one iphone store doesn't have my book, another does. Comparitive shopping–it's that simple.

    In addition, some retailers have really stepped up the reading experience. Take for example BooksOnBoard ( it's listed on the top spot in Stanza catalog).

    BooksOnBoard has developed a QikClik technology that takes 3 clicks from selection to download, so I don't have to go through the huge hassle of most retailers (including Amazon) which made me hesitant on ereading in early on.

    With Amazon taking over Lexcycle what will happen to technological advances like this? Will we be left with the same old Kindle problems ? will all the good advances be swept under the rug in order for Amazon to stay on top?

    Personally, I just want my reading experience to keep improving. There are still alot of bugs that need to be worked out to make it simpler, but I'm afraid that if Amazon keeps aquiring rather than making advances –the readers will be the ones left with the short end of the stick

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