Picture of Apple iPad with eBooks on it from Apple iBook Store

It depends on whether you want to publish and jump through all the hoops Apple requires. Those hoops include:

Technical Requirements to publish on Apple:

  • An Intel-based Mac running OS X 10.5.8 or later
  • At least 1 GB RAM
  • QuickTime 7.0.3 or later.
  • At least 10 GB of available hard drive space
  • A broadband internet connection with an upload rate of 1 MB/sec or faster is recommended.

If that wasn’t enough, you also need to have:

  • A US Tax ID
  • A ISBN which costs $125 for one or $250 for ten
  • A valid iTunes account with a credit card on file
  • And, your book must be in the ePub format

And the kicker, from their application message before you apply “Apple does not pay partners until they meet payment requirements and earning thresholds in each territory.”

Since they don’t tell you what their payment requirements are for each territory, you could wait years before you saw a dime.

Personally, I’ll pass because these restrictions are meant to keep independent Authors out of their system. Sure you can use a third party aggregator but why should an Author have to do this? Amazon or Barnes and Noble make it EZ for Authors to self-publish. So why is Apple being such a turd?

My guess is they don’t want the bookkeeping headache. Which is totally without merit because there is software that will do this. Nope, it’s my thought they made a deal with the “big boy” publishing houses. And, I just may be right because the European Commission launched (12-06-11) an investigation into Apple and five mainstream publishing houses (Hachette Livre, HarperCollins, Simon & Schuster, Pearson’s Penguin and the owner of the Macmillan imprint, Verlagsgruppe Georg von Holtzbrinck,) who might have conspired to fix prices.

Apparently, they’re trying to stop Amazon from having such a large market share of Authors selling ebooks. Which brings me to my next point:

Apple has a very small share of the ebook market

Why?

Because Amazon saw the writing on the wall years ago and bought:

  1. Mobi ten years ago – which was a smart idea because it kept it out of the other ebook retailers.
  2. Lexcycle which gave them Stanza which might have proved a stiff competitor
  3. The Book Depository, an global onliner retailer of print

I’m not going to get into a discussion if this is a good thing or not but it does point out the fact, Amazon has the largest share of ebooks sold with all the rest (Nook, Apple, Sony) coming in a very distance second, third and fourth.

You would think because Apple is a distant third, they would be more user friendly to Authors. And maybe they will in the future but for right now, they aren’t. So go ahead and publish on Apple if you can meet their requirements. Me, I’m going to wait until they become more Author friendly.

graphic of Judith Tramayne's signature in her article 'Should you self publish in Apples iBook Store'

P.S. Should you want to jump through the hoops, you can publish a great looking ePUB by with my Kindle and ePUB eBook Video Course.