At long last, Google Books is ready for business.
The web bookstore opened Monday and offers some of the 15 million books Google spent the past six years scanning. About 4,000 publishers are letting Google carry many of their recently released books as well. Indie booksellers are hoping the pre-holiday start-up will boost business.
The Associated Press reports that e-books are expected to generate almost $1 billion in U.S. sales this year and climb to $1.7 billion by 2012 as more people buy electronic readers and computer tablets such as the iPad, according to Forrester Research. The research group expects a total of 15 million e-readers and tablets to have been sold in the U.S. by the end of the year.
You can read Google's books on any device with a web browser. Just don't try to download one on your Kindle.