Harry Potter eBooks Arrive in iBooks as Enhanced Editions

harrypotter_hero_us[1]When the first legal Harry Potter ebooks were released in 2012, Pottermore was careful to remain platform-neutral and sell ebooks which could be loaded on to any major ebook platform.

Now it looks like they’re playing favorites, and developing ebooks for specific platforms. Apple has announced the release of a new set of Harry Potter novels. Only available in iBooks, the ebooks feature “full original text, interactive animations, and elaborate artwork” as well as margin notes from the author.

Or at least that is what the press release claims; I bought one and I’m not sure there’s enough new content to make buying a new ebook worth the cost (then again, I’m cheap).

I got the first book in the series (it cost me $10) and so far I have only found a few simple animated GIFs which did not look all that more amazing than a static image.

Edit: I just found TNM’s story about the new ebooks, which included this GIF (thanks, Doug!):


There’s about one GIF per chapter, and most only run about two or three seconds on a loop. A couple towards the end of the book are more elaborate, but they are the exception.

I also found a couple annotations from the author (only two in five chapters scanned). Here’s what they look like:

You can find the ebooks in iBooks app on the iPhone, iPad, or for the Mac. In the US, they are ten dollars each.

Nate Hoffelder

View posts by Nate Hoffelder
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader. He has been blogging about indie authors since 2010 while learning new tech skills weekly. He fixes author sites, and shares what he learns on The Digital Reader's blog. In his spare time, he fosters dogs for A Forever Home, a local rescue group.


  1. Tom Semple8 October, 2015

    It seems these are in IBA format, not ePub: you cannot change the font or theme.

    I’m puzzled why you purchased the first book, if you are, as you say, ‘cheap’. As everyone knows, the fifth book is by far the best value here, being some 870 pages (in US Edition), for the same price. The first book has only 309 pages.

    1. Nate Hoffelder8 October, 2015

      I wanted to see what was in it, and that was the top of the list.

  2. R9 October, 2015

    They are not selling these enhanced editions on pottermore? I don’t understand.

    1. Nate Hoffelder9 October, 2015

      @ R

      No, sorry. The ebooks are Apple’s own proprietary ebook format. Which is strange, because they don’t do much that can’t be duplicated in Epub (Kindle doesn’t like GIFs, so that is out).

  3. fabrizio venerandi9 October, 2015

    afaik nobody can’t sell iba outside apple store

  4. Bradley Metrock9 October, 2015

    Great news. iBooks Author has enjoyed three updates from Apple over the last 12 months and is now almost entirely unrecognizable from what it was back in 2012. And this type of support from Apple (with more to come) is very well received.

  5. […] filings and offers a revealing explanation for Pottermore's recent decisions to distribute enhanced ebooks to iBooks and to let Audible, B&N, and other retailers sell its […]

  6. […] the latest publisher to take advantage of features exclusive to iBooks. Last October Pottermore published enhanced editions of the Harry Potter series in […]

  7. […] first enhanced Harry Potter ebooks were released for iBooks in late 2015, but the new one is being developed for Amazon's Kindle in Motion, and will feature […]


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