Initially, Google partnered with Sony to provide around one million free public domain e-books to their store.
Now Google has aligned itself with UK-based Interead, the company behind the Cool-er e-reader, and will provide the same number of free e-books to their online store.
Granted, who is going to be reading these public domain books? Academics? School kids? Everyone knows that Amazon has the selection and pricing down pat. This is the sad fact of the matter.
Also, while the Cool-er e-store is now well stocked, you may not want to read them on the Cool-er's own e-reader. The review that came in from Gizmodo earlier this year indicated that problems abound. My biggest complaint, from what I can see in the review, is the computer-like font. The Sony and Kindle both mimic print type (easier on the eyes, I do think). The Cool-er's functionality looks entirely primitive, too. As Gizmodo says:
As if it wasn't obvious enough from its appearance, the Cool-er is designed to be the iPod of eBook readers. It succeeds in looking like an iPod and being available in a lot of colors, but fails in usability and design.Apparently the Cool-er is releasing a wireless version in the not-so-distant future. Hopefully this new model will be far easier to use. A device can easily enough look like an iPod but if it doesn't have the intuitive response of an Apple machine, the iPod of e-readers it is not.
[EDIT: Quillblog linked to this post! Happy day! Zoe Whittall is now writing (and blogging) for Quill, a very happy occurrence, if I may say so. I'm a rabid, obsessive fan of her novel Bottle Rocket Hearts. Expect to see a review of her latest, Holding Still For As Long As Possible, up here soon.]