Scribd is the self-described “world’s largest digital library, where readers can discover books and written works of all kinds.” Scribd Subscriptions is the company’s new $8.99/month service that offers unlimited book reading. The YC S06 company is great for sharing documents, like school notes and research, court filings, and recipes. Scribd co-founder and CEO Trip Adler also recently discussed the future of e-reader technology on wearable devices like Google Glass.
Scribd Subscriptions seeks to be Netflix for books. HarperCollins Publishers is the first of the five largest U.S. publishers to join the service, according to Scribd’s blog. Subscribers receive “unlimited access to most of HarperCollins’ back catalog, as well as an assortment of other books from smaller publishers.” The service is available worldwide and supports offline reading using mobile apps on iOS App Store and Google Play. Scribd Subscriptions is available for a free one-month trial membership.
Evernote and similar services are great for collecting information. Scribd is useful for searching and sharing research. Publishing on Scribd is a simple process. Any document that can be printed to pdf can be uploaded and shared. Entire document text can then be searched. Documents can also be embedded on other websites and blogs.
Students of all ages will especially find value in sharing class notes. There’s literally hundreds of user-contributed documents about almost any topic. Scribd has notes and reports for college undergrads studying Kurt Vonnegut’s Harrison Bergeron through PhD candidates researching Namibia. Keyword searches can be done across the contents of all Scribd documents. Contributor uploads can be browsed to find related documents.
Edgar Allen Poe or one of Aesop’s Fables sounds like a good way to enjoy a few free minutes. E-readers are a type of app that might be popular on wearable devices (“wearables”). Poetry and short stories in particular seem like something people may enjoy on a smartwatch. That said, wearables keep being mentioned in all sorts of discussions.
In an interview with Fast Company, Scribd co-founder Trip Adler suggested “reading goggles” may be the future of e-readers. Mr. Adler says ”We’re growing as a company, so we’ll see if we’re actually going to go to that level and become a hardware company. I don’t know at this point. But this might be the kind of thing we do down the road.”