The Alliance of Independent Authors published an excellent article on February 5 by Giacomo Giammatteo which conclusively shows that Apple treats authors much better than Amazon. Their services, like coupons, promotions, and pricing, are much better. But the main advantage is that Apple always pays 70% and Amazon rarely does.
But Amazon sells so much more
This is still true for many, but Apple is solidly in control of the second spot according to Giacomo (and in my experience). In my stats, I have to remember that even though Apple’s sales look pathetic when compared with Kindle, over half the income from Draft2Digital, almost all of Lulu, and much of the Smashwords income come from the iBookstore.
But Apple does so much better overseas
In addition, much of my sales through Apple come from overseas. Apple sells in 51 territories outside the US, whereas Amazon only sells in 12. Plus, Apple gives me 70% everywhere and Amazon rarely does.
More importantly, Apple allows me individual control over pricing to each country with no percentage losses. This is a big deal in countries like Mexico, India, Brazil, and others where American pricing is simply over the top for their economies.
But Apple does not charge for downloads
For books like mine, which commonly run 20 megabytes, this is a huge difference. On a practical level, it means that Amazon only pays me 35% most of the time. With Apple, anything up to 2 gigabytes is free—and they support ePUB3. So, I can seriously consider embedding small videos and the like when necessary.
Plus Apple supports ePUB3 with embedded fonts, so I have much greater control over the look and readability of my books. Kindle’s books always look like cheap, junk design—because that’s all they will accept. Even Kindle’s new fixed layout textbooks are only PDFs which require very careful design.
But Apple requires a Mac for uploading
This is a relatively small issue. Finding a book designer who uses a Mac is not difficult. Plus, Draft2Digital, Lulu, and Smashwords do not require Macs for uploads. So, this is really a non-issue.
You need to seriously consider adding Apple to your mix
All of these factors mean that in the long-run Apple is likely to match surpass Amazon in ebook sales, especially around the world. Bottomline? Apple treats us much better now. This will probably continue for the foreseeable future.