Wed, Jun 05, 2019 - Page 14 News List

Amazon now selling e-books in traditional Chinese
亞馬遜Kindle繁中電子書上架 台灣書走向世界

A Readmoo mooInk e-reader device, which supports vertical text orientation.
讀墨mooInk 電子書閱讀器可顯示垂直閱讀版面。

Photo: Screen grab from YouTube

Amazon officially launched the traditional Chinese Kindle e-book platform on May 24. Now users have access to over 20,000 e-books in traditional Chinese through the Kindle app or Kindle-reader devices.

Of the 40,000 books published per year in Taiwan, with its population of 23 million, only 3 percent are electronic books. Amazon has previously announced its plan to move into Taiwan and enter the traditional Chinese e-book market.

Over a year ago, Amazon’s Beijing team, including its operational and technical department members, visited Taiwan to assess its market potential. They found that despite impressive publishing volumes, Taiwan’s market was too small, and exploiting its potential would present a challenge.

Although Taiwanese account for 90 percent of the sales of e-books published in Taiwan, readers of traditional Chinese books can be found all around the world. Amazon’s breaking into the traditional Chinese e-book publishing gives it access not only to Taiwan’s market, but also to consumers of traditional Chinese readers worldwide. The new platform will enable e-books to reach places paper-based books previously did not, so publications in traditional Chinese can now be distributed in large volumes throughout the globe.

With the clear potential for growth in the e-book market, many book-selling platforms have embraced e-books over the past two years. Reading this trend, publishers will be encouraged to increase publication of e-books, making the e-book market more vibrant.

Chinese-language books form an important sector for global publishing, and Amazon is one of the world’s leading e-commerce companies. Domestic e-book platform operators are optimistic about Amazon’s breaking into Taiwan’s e-book market as, with the clear upward trend in e-book sales, increasing numbers of Taiwanese books can be sold to the global Chinese-reading market through Amazon’s platform.


1. traditional Chinese phr.


(fan2 [zheng4] ti3 zhong1 wen2)

2. e-book; electronic book phr.


(dian4 zi3 shu1)

3. paper-based book phr.


(shi2 ti3 shu1; zhi2 ben3 shu1)

4. publisher n.


(chu1 ban3 shang1)

5. reading device; reader phr.


(yue4 du2 qi4)

In addition to e-book content, many major e-book platforms have also developed their own reading devices, such as the Amazon Kindle and Rakuten Kobo from overseas companies. Taiwanese e-book company Readmoo has also developed its own reader MooInk, which is optimized for reading in Chinese.

(Translated by Lin Lee-kai, Taipei Times)









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