Why Kobo Should Do ePub Author

This is a follow-up to: Now All eBook Eyes Turn To Kobo

The short version is that it would be good for Kobo first and for everyone else second.

1) Adobe can’t do it. And if they did, it would be for an elite, just as InDesign is, with its whopping price of $699.00. That is a tool made for the classes, not for the masses.

2) Kobo would benefit first of all by giving people a tool that would do the conversion Kobo itself currently does of changing ePub into their own Kepub format. This would free up resources at Kobo.

3) Kobo could also sort out the metadata mess. This tool would help everyone input the metadata that Kobo currently has to fix over and over and over again from assorted sources. This would again free up resources at Kobo.

4) Kobo would especially benefit by attracting writers. I would do this by pricing it at $99.00 for anyone — but free for those who publish at Kobo. Amazon currently attracts the most self-publishing writers. This would be Kobo’s opportunity to level the field.

5) Kobo would have a huge competitive advantage against both Sony and Barnes & Noble. Although the tool would output standards-compliant ePub 3 which could also be published at those stores, the chances are that most writers won’t bother since it would be a simple button-click to upload to Kobo via the app.

6) Kobo would finally be seen as having a leadership position in eBooks. Right now, Kobo is easy to fall off the radar — as it did in my case. Such a tool would change that, permanently.

I could go on, but I think these points alone should be compelling enough for Kobo’s executives to seriously consider the wisdom of developing such a tool.

There is a void out there right now. Kobo can fill it and win.


  1. […] Mike Cane hat auf The Digital Reader ein paar Punkte zusammengetragen, warum es aus seiner Sicht gut wäre, wenn sich Kobo dieser Aufgabe annehmen würde. Zum einen würde es Kobo einen Wettbewerbsvorteil gegenüber Sony und Barnes & Noble bringen – sowie eine führende Position im eBook-Sektor insgesamt. Zum anderen könnte es – trotz der offenen Format-Ausrichtung – Autoren und Verleger an sich binden. […]

  2. Jörn21 January, 2012

    Very good idea: I would buy it!

  3. Alexander Inglis22 January, 2012

    Thinking of Kobo in terms of the value of its ebook store is also a shift in attitude and another subtle measure of Kobo’s ongoing evolution.

  4. Peter23 January, 2012

    Not sure a Rakuten-managed kobo can pull it off.

    Look at the customer reviews -or searches, or website visits- for buy.com, play.com, linkshare. All went downhill fast after Rakuten bought them out.

    Hopefully the people at kobo will bail and end up working somewhere they have a chance to do what they do best.


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