Indian readers are now gearing up to ebooks. At the recently concluded New Delhi World Book Fair, a new ereader was launched. Here’s more about this new ereader. The iReader App was launched at New Delhi World Book Fair 2018 by Zhang Jianxin, Hon. Cultural Counselor, The Embassy of the People's Republic of China and Subhash Goyal, Member, National Tourism Advisory Council, Ministry of Tourism, Govt. of India. The launch was organised by Kaushal Goyal, Managing Director of GBD Overseas Pvt. Ltd. as agents for and on behalf of iReader Technology Co Ltd, China. The event was presided over and conducted by Kartik R Kushvah, Secretary, Delhi State Booksellers' & Publishers' Association. It was very well attended by major Indian publishers & readers.

Here, Kaushal Goyal shares more info about the same, in conversation with Varsha Verma.

AABP: How is iReader placed vis-a-vis its competitors?

Kaushal: iReader is number 1 in China and South-East Asia. Now they are entering Indian market with an eye on selling English, Hindi & Urdu books of Indian publishers not only in India but all over Asia and the world. Kindle is the only competitor of iReader. They will officially enter Indian market in June-July 2018. By then, they will manage to get enough Indian eBooks with the help of GBD.

AABP: What is its USP?

Kaushal: The USP Of iReader is that it is user friendly; simple but stunning; healthy -protects your eyes while reading; very smart- iReader can work itself; different formats support-TXT, UMD, PDF, EPUB, OFFIC are all supported very well; and has 500 million users worldwide.

AABP: What are your targets for the coming year?

Kaushal: iReader would like to capture India market as it enters in July 2018. By the year end, we would have 100+ million Indian users of iReader. iReader has collaborated with OPPO & VIVO phones for India and all their new phones will come with pre-loaded iReader App. For any other smartphones, iReader App can be downloaded free from Google Pay or Apply Playstore in less than a minute.

AABP: Who would be your major target audience? Any institutional sales?

Kaushal: To start with our major target are the young people: between the age group of 18-40 years. At present no institutional sales but can think about it after 6 months or so.

AABP: In your opinion, is India ready for the tech revolution and ereaders? What percentage of the total population is tech-savvy?

Kaushal: Yes, India is very much ready for technology revolution. Narendra Modi, Hon. Prime Minister of India supports Digital India. By iReader App on smartphones, anybody and everybody would be able to read eBooks on their phones without having to buy an iReader/Kindle device. eBooks are 50-60% cheaper than printed books. We did a survey of 500 college students and 73% prefer to read eBooks on their phones as they can read more books at less price. Many ebooks are also free so they get a digital library of their own.

AABP: Do you think people will switch over ebooks soon?

Kaushal: With support from Government of India, very soon we are going to be fully digital. Movie-tickets; bus, train & air-tickets are booked digitally; most payments are nowadays made digitally via Paytm, BHIM & other such Apps; most of the shopping is done online from Amazon, Flipkart, Myntra, Paytm etc. The same way, slowly but surely, people will switch over to eBooks.

AABP: What are your future plans?

Kaushal: Initially we are going to upload Indian publishers books in Hindi, English & Urdu but from January 2019 onwards, we plan to add other regional language books as well: like Bengali, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam and Marathi. There is a huge scope in the regional languages as we would be the first to add these Indian regional language eBooks.



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