Friday, August 14, 2009

Adobe's proprietary DRM-protected ePub / Sony

NY Times's Brad Stone writes about Sony's announcement that " the end of the year it will sell digital books only in the ePub format, an open standard created by a group including publishers like Random House and HarperCollins. and that Sony "will scrap its proprietary anticopying software in favor of technology from the software maker Adobe that restricts how often e-books can be shared or copied."

Note that Adobe's DRM-protected ePub format (in effect, a proprietary format when DRM is added to a standard container format with no native DRM) can be read by e-readers that incorporate Adobe's Digital Editions firmware (Astak's 5" Pocket Pro Reader for one).  Most e-readers will not read the DRM-protected books and PDFs.  Publishers do tend to insist on some kind of protection.

  As Teleread points out, Sony is not going to a really 'open' format (which would be non-DRM'd ePub) -- and Adobe will call the shots as more e-readers sign up for their proprietary protected format.  However, Stone's NY Times piece did point out (see above) that Sony was opting, with respect to its own anti-copying software, " in favor of technology from the software maker Adobe that restricts how often e-books can be shared or copied."

GigaOM explains the implications of Sony and Adobe's latest moves. Below are ways to Share this post if you'd like others to see it.
-- The Send to Kindle button works well only on Firefox currently.

Send to Kindle

(Older posts have older Kindle model info. For latest models, see CURRENT KINDLES page. )
If interested, you can also follow my add'l blog-related news at Facebook and Twitter
Questions & feedback are welcome in the Comment areas (tho' spam is deleted). Thanks!


  1. the current line of sony readers already support non-drm epub. by adopting adobe's drm epub in the future, it does not necessarily mean that sony will abandone support for non-drm epub.

    i would imagine that drm-epub support would be add via a firmware update.

    but as i have a sony reader now, i would be severely pissed off if the list of formats supported in a later firmware update actually takes away support of any format in a previous update.

  2. Anonymous,
    I doubt they'll take anything away! Astak will help keep things in balance.

    In mid June, Bezos announced to the Wired magazine conference that

    "In the future,’s Kindle e-book reader will display more book formats beyond its own."

    I sure hope ePub's one of them!

    Thanks for your feedback. I did realize Sony currently supports non-DRM ePub but a few of us ar pointing out that the big change from their own DRM-protected format to Adobe's, while a bit more open, is not exactly open.

    But, a good sign. To loosen Amazon's grip on them, or at least the feared grip, publishers
    are putting a lot of power now into Adobe's hands, re pricing etc. Interesting times.

  3. does that mean that kindle books can read books in EPUB Adobe® DRM format? sorry if this is a stupid question but thinking about buying a kindle and i'd like to know if I can buy books from casa del libro in that format as amazon have a pretty poor selection of books in spanish.



NOTE: TO AVOID SPAM being posted instantly, this blog uses the "DELAY" feature.

Am often away much of the day, and postings won't show up right away. Posts done to use referrer-links may never show up.

Usually, am online enough to release comments within a day though, so the hard-to-read match-text tests for commenting won't be needed this way.

Feedback and questions are welcome. Thanks for participating.

Technical Problems?
If you're having problems leaving a Comment, Google's blogger-help asks that you clear the '' cookies on your browser's Tools or Options menu bar and that will fix the Comment-box problems (until they have a permanent fix).

IF that doesn't work either, then UNcheck the "keep me signed in" box -- Google-help says that should allow your comment to post (it's a workaround to a current bug).
Apologies for the problems.

TIP: There's a size limit. If longer than 3500 characters or so, in a text editor, make two posts out of it.

[Valid RSS]