Information Today
Volume 19, Issue 5 May 2002
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OverDrive Introduces Digital Kiosk

OverDrive, Inc., a provider of e-book, digital rights management (DRM), and media marketplace solutions, has introduced Digital Kiosk, an all-in-one online vending machine for the sale of protected digital content. OverDrive supplies complete merchant account services and DRM technology with each ready-made Digital Kiosk, enabling publishers and retailers to protect and sell e-books, audiobooks, music, and digital media over the Web.

Digital Kiosks provide a complete retail system with a catalog, a shopping cart, real-time credit card processing, secure hosting, and 24/7 technical support. According to the announcement, anyone can open a Digital Kiosk to merchandise, protect, and sell e-books, newsletters, reports, journals, music, video, and audiobooks using DRM technologies from Microsoft Corp. and Adobe Systems, Inc. Digital Kiosk shoppers can purchase and download products to PCs; laptops; Pocket PCs; and portable media players, such as Windows Media Player.

"Now any publisher can sell e-book and digital audiobook products directly from their own Web site," said Steve Potash, OverDrive CEO. "The one-time setup fee for a fully featured Digital Kiosk is less than $5,000, including DRM, and [is] ready to generate revenue immediately. Kiosks also include a retail account with OverDrive Content Reserve (http://www.con
tentreserve.com), providing access to an extensive inventory of resalable premium content from over 300 publishers, including HarperCollins, Random House, and McGraw-Hill."

Digital Kiosks feature a Direct Buy Link in which each product has its own unique URL. Publishers, agents, and authors can promote product sales by applying a Direct Buy Link to a specific title in Web pages, e-mail, print ads, and materials.

Digital Kiosk also includes the following:

  • Professionally designed Kiosk templates (skins) branded with company name and logo

  • Support for international use, including processing of global currencies

  • Flexible merchandising and promotions for featured titles

  • Web-based administration and management of the Digital Kiosk store

  • Real-time merchant credit card services for MasterCard, Visa, and American Express

  • DRM services for suppliers who wish to manage licensing rights and protect content
According to the announcement, Digital Kiosks are the result of OverDrive's success in providing media marketplace solutions, including retail storefronts for divisions of London-based WHSmith, Paris-based Vivendi Universal, and Follett Corp. in the U.S. OverDrive is a partner with Microsoft and Adobe Systems and is a principal member of the Open eBook Forum, which is focused on driving specifications and standards for the electronic publishing industry.

Source: OverDrive, Inc., Cleveland, 216/573-6886; http://www.overdrive.com.

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