Amazon’s new Kindle 2 is getting a lot of buzz now, but a Canadian bookseller is confident it can give smart phone users the same experience without the hefty price tag, PC World reports. Shortcovers is set to launch soon as an application for the iPhone, BlackBerry, and Google’s Android operating system. Shortcovers is owned and operated by Indigo Books & Music, the largest book retailer in Canada. While phone-based eBook readers have been available in places like Apple’s App Store for a while, it’s Shortcovers’ close ties to the publishing industry that set it apart from the pack. Because of the company’s connections with major publishers, it’s been able to secure the rights to new books that are often tough to find on other services. Shortcovers says it’ll have about 50,000 full books available upon launch, with another 200,000 individual chapters and excerpts in its library.
Compared to the Kindle, Shortcovers comes up a little short with the bells and whistles. You won’t find a built-in dictionary, for example, nor will you be able to highlight text. The program’s advantage, though, is its convenience: It’s already right there in your pocket, so there’s no need to tote around a second device…

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