Once upon a time, somebody decided that books no longer needed to be made from paper anymore if an electronic device could be doing it instead. Now, eBooks are big business... and Google's getting in on the action here in Blighty with the software ready for you to download.
Amazon's Kindle may lead the way in terms of sales but Apple has fought back with its iBooks software too. Google has been playing as well but its Books haven't left the confines of Uncle Sam's back yard until now.
Deals are in place with the likes of Penguin, Random House and Hachette but on top of that, there are also two million public domain reads for you to get your hands on free (ie. the ones that are out of copyright so they and you don't have to pay a magic bean.) Hopefully Blackwell's and Gardners' Hive will be joining in soon too.
Competition-wise, this bears more resemblance to Kindle's offerings than Apple's. Here's why: Kindle offer downloads that work with WhisperSync across all Kindle related devices. So that could be an actual Kindle reader or a Kindle app for your computer, iPhone, iPad, Android phone/tablet or BlackBerry (ie. a lot of devices.) Apple's iBooks, meanwhile, only work across Apple products of which there aren't so many apart from the above mentioned.
What Google's doing is allowing you to not only read on your Android device but also iOS, the web reader and, crucially, compatible e-readers (ie. Not just one particular brand because, remember, Kindle isn't the only kid in this story.) Sweet. Especially since it'll come under renewed assault from the upcoming Kindle Fire which Amazon announced last week.
If you fancy getting in on some reading action, no need to wait - it's all live as of now. As is the new version of Android Market (for most of us) through which you'll download your reading delights.
And they all lived happily ever after!