Plans to make Sony eReaders available for purchase from independent bookstores in time for this holiday season will not come to fruition despite the best efforts of the American Booksellers Association and others in the book industry. Work is ongoing, however, to provide indie booksellers with the ability to sell eReaders sometime in the future.
In August, Sony held a press conference at which it announced that it was cooperating with ABA, other retailers, and a variety of traditional and digital publishers to make available a universe of reading material in EPUB format compatible with Sony eReaders. At the same time, it was announced that plans were underway to make Sony eReaders available for purchase from independent bookstores in time for the holidays. Those plans were derailed by the fact that Sony won't handle direct orders for small quantities. ABA, which has been working non-stop to broker an arrangement that would enable its members to sell eReaders, stressed that it will be continuing its efforts.
Meanwhile, media reports indicate that eReader may be in short supply overall this holiday season. Last week, the Wall Street Journal reported that Sony had announced orders for its new Daily Edition Reader -- which the company said in August would arrive in time for the holiday -- are now expected to ship December 18 through January 8, and an actual delivery date couldn't be guaranteed.