Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) is launching its iBookstore in Japan, bringing its popular e-book store to the country for the first time and featuring titles from numerous local publishers, the company announced today.
Apple's digital e-book storefront is now available in 51 countries and the iPad maker said that its iBooks app has been downloaded 130 million times worldwide.
Interactive e-books on the iPad allow authors to engage with readers in ways not available to traditional text-only e-books. While Apple has long lagged Amazon.com's (NASDAQ:AMZN) catalog in domestic e-book titles, the e-tail giant has less of a first mover advantage in Japan. Amazon first launched its Japanese Kindle Store in October, which includes its Kindle e-reader hardware as well as localized e-books.
Apple continues to expand country availability of its various content stores as complementary offerings to boost device sales, with the Japanese launch of iBooks being the latest example.
Fool contributor Evan Niu, CFA, owns shares of Apple. The Motley Fool recommends Amazon.com and Apple. The Motley Fool owns shares of Amazon.com and Apple. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.