Apple is now offering an alternative to the traditional publisher. The company this week opened a new portal for independent authors to self-publish their books for the iBooks Store open to iPad (and soon iPhone) customers.
Apple’s iTunes Connect program has a section where authors can self-publish their work under certain formatting requirements. The books must be made in the ePub format like the rest of the offerings in the iBooks Store.
Apple’s iPad launched simultaneously with the iBooks Store, and several major publishers such as Penguin, Harper Collins and Hachette Book Group, have signed up to publish their books on the iPad. Apple later announced in March that the iBooks Store would be available for iPhone users as soon as iPhone OS 4 launches in the summer.
With iBooks and the iPad, Apple’s biggest target is Amazon, who hosts its popular Amazon e-book store and sells the dedicated Kindle e-reader. Amazon, too, allows authors to self-publish books through their market."