The Delhi Book Fair is underway (until September 9th) and the focus this year is the growing ebook market. India is reckoned to be home to the world’s third largest publishing industry (after the US and the UK), so there’s clearly huge potential for the nation’s publishers to exploit ebooks, and for Indian readers to embrace new technology.
The ebook hype machine in India is really getting underway. The Times of India has a report in which Overdrive’s Johanna Brinton describes the Indian ebook scene as being still modest, but growing rapidly, and there’s evidence of innovation in terms of the development of apps and new ebook technology. In other words, don’t assume that Indian publishers will just blindly follow the path laid down by their western counterparts. Smart western companies would do well to keep an eye on some of the developments that will come out of Indian in the next few years.
India has around 1.2bn inhabitants, making it the second most populous country in the world (after China, which India is expected to surpass within 15 years), but social parameters vary hugely across the country. When Amazon launched new pricing mechanisms for Indian KDP sales, many authors found they were able to drop their prices, but it’s worth noting that more affluent citizens who have access to iPads and other devices are not necessarily going to be looking purely for the cheapest items.