Harrison Weber is TNW's Features Editor in NYC. Part writer, part designer. Stay in touch: Twitter @harrisonweber, Google+ and Email. Harrison Weber is TNW's Features Editor in NYC. Part writer, part designer. Stay in touch: Twitter @harrisonweber, Google+ and Email.
Expanding upon what is now surely one of the most important roles of Flipboard, commerce, the magazine-like app has partnered with Apple (yes, Apple) to launch a slightly surprising new section: “Books.”
Flipboard’s Books category, only available for iPad and iPhone users, is packed with books you can buy from the iBookstore. Flipboard tells TNW that “it’s like browsing a bookstore in Flipboard,” with a strong emphasis on discovery.
To be clear, you are not reading these books in Flipboard, only
shopping for discovering them. Flipboard’s book listings only include the publisher’s description, link, and cover art, which takes you directly to the iBookstore.
This launch comes over a year after Flipboard CEO Mike McCue hinted that “you may be able to flip through a selection of books, movies and TV shows in your Flipboard app soon.” Now, we know at least one piece of that premonition is accurate.
The new section also enables Flipboard users to flip through the latest books by category, of which there are 25, “from Bestsellers to History to Children & Teens,” explains Flipboard. The partnership exposes one of Apple’s greatest weaknesses across most of its digital stores: there are no methods for content discovery, and that’s what Flipboard does best.
According to Christina Mace-Turner, head of publisher partnerships at Flipboard, “buying a book is simple, but finding a book that interests you is hard.”
Conversely, this partnership with Apple, along with a previously announced deal with Levis, showcases just how interested brands are in integrating their products with Flipboard’s popular service.
The new book section is now available in ten countries, with 25 customized and localized sections for the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, Brazil, France, Germany, The Netherlands, Italy, and Spain. Reportedly part of the iBookstore affiliate program, Flipboard takes a 5% cut of book sales.
➤ Flipboard, via the App Store
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