Nook vanishes from Europe —
Can America be far behind?

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If you’re an independent author, eBook sales are (or should be) a major part of your business plan. All that in-store distribution that is almost impossible to get? That’s not an issue for your eBooks. Your eBooks can be sold globally in most cases, giving you access to an entire world of readers.

So when one of the top-three e-readers vanishes from a continent, it’s a significant event. That’s what recently happened in the UK, where the nook will cease to be a thing as of May 2016.

According to Goodreader, the UK was the last bastion of Nook-ness in Europe.

(Barnes & Noble) only sells e-readers, tablets and e-books in the United States and the UK.  The company used to run a Windows 8 reading app all over Europe, but has since abandoned it.

That same article stated that Amazon owned 95% of the e-reader device market in the UK. It’s no surprise, then, that BN threw in the towel.

Kindle currently owns around 75% of the e-reader market in the US, and 74% of of all eBooks sold, according to That link covers the market in far more detail than you will find here.

A chart from

Newsflash that is not news: Amazon owns the eBook market. They have for awhile. Amazon will continue to do so.

About 97% of our eBook sales here at Empty Set come through Amazon. All of the work we’ve pumped into having our books available on Kobo, Google Play, nook, the iBooks store, the deceased Sony e-Reader and others results in only 3% of our sales.

Frankly, it’s not worth it.

If it’s easy for us to put a product in a non-Amazon store, we’ll do that, but we’re starting to strategize for the all-Amazon world. We want our customers to be able to find our books for any platform they like, but that pursuit provides diminishing returns. Our platform-agnostic strategy has produced more work than sales.

The iPad, iPhone and any Android phone aren’t going anywhere. People will still read books on those, to some extent (although those platforms are included in our 3% non-Amazon sales). So if the nook and Kobo vanish from the great plains of the United States? It means nothing to us. Nothing at all. When it comes time to get a new device, the people who are die-hard consumers of those platforms are more than likely going to go with the only dedicated e-reader that makes sense — the Kindle.

So sayonara, nook! We hardly knew ye.


  1. BigJohn

    I hope this doesn’t mean that when you publish your self-published books, like the upcoming THE RIDER and EARTHCORE, that you won’t still offer e-pub versions of your books. Will you still?