Their latest idea is launching a Netflix-style rental store…only Amazon will rent digital books. Older titles would be offered, with limitations placed on the amount of books Amazon users could read per month free of charge.
Amazon’s subscription library service will also be available to Amazon Prime members, adding book rentals to its present $79 per year service.
The site behind popular Kindle e-reader also has plans to release a tablet-style computer, which is aimed for release by end of 2011, which may coincide with its proposed digital book rental concept.
However, ideas of book rentals are raising concern among publishers as to how overall book sales and their present relationships with bookstores would be affected, while sources from The Wall Street Journal are skeptical as to the success of a digital book rental service.
At present, Amazon allows students to rent textbooks and let users share books for up to 14 days on Kindle.