Apple has apparently sold out its initial production of iPads. Apple began taking preorders for the iPad on March 12, promising to have the iPad ready for retail launch on April 3rd.
Big publishers will have books on the iPad and self-publishers will be there too, courtesy of Smashwords, a company that has signed a distribution deal with Apple. Mark Coker, CEO of Smashwords, said in an email to authors that his company had been working on signing a deal with Apple ever since the iPad was announced. To get their books on the iPad by launch day, Smashwords authors must have their works submitted to Smashwords’ premium catalog by March 31st. The distribution cost to get self-published books on the iPad is free. Smashwords is also adding ISBN support, as required by Apple.
Some reports have the Wall Street Journal being offered on the iPad for $17.99 a month. The paper edition of the Journal is $29 a month, while online access to the Journal is offered at $1.99 weekly. Over 30,000 classic book titles will be available for free on the iPad through volunteer-supported Project Gutenberg’s free digital library.
According to Online Media Daily, riding the hype of the iPad, Apple is also preparing to announce a new personalized, mobile advertising system. The new ad platform, which is rumored for unveiling to Madison Avenue on April 7th, has been privately described by Steve Jobs as “revolutionary” and “our next big thing.”