The Bookseller reveal that the UK Academic bookseller Blackwell has reaffirmed its commitment to launch the instore Espresso Book Machine on 17th April.
The first machine will be installed as a pilot in its flagship Charing Cross branch on a pilot basis, producing books on demand for customers while they browse the shelves or enjoy a coffee. Blackwell had announced the move last year and many feared that the organisation departures and current climate would have impacted the decision but it clearly hasn’t and it will certainly by one to watch.
The placement within store and the promotion around its launch will be interesting to watch. We would have it in the shop window and in the face of the public but again we probably wouldn’t have chosen Charing Cross as the first store and probably picked Oxford.
The important things are that it is the first real move to a distribute and print model as opposed to print and distribute one and the other is to see the reaction of the public to POD books on the point of access and quality. Some would say that it’s a return to the days when a bookstore always had a press in the back!.
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