Frequently Asked Questions

What is the process for getting a custom eReader app suite?
First, we want to get to know you, your organization, and your goals for your eReader. Once details and expectations have been ironed out, we will present you with a project proposal including a time estimate. If you have special development needs beyond what is included in our basic pricing, we will also include a quote in the project proposal. When that has been agreed upon, we will start working on your apps. Turn around for completed eReader apps published to the app stores is typically 3-4 weeks.
How do app updates work?
Whenever we make performance improvements and add features for any client, all clients receive the benefits. In addition, this does not even require resubmission of your app to the app store. When users open your apps after an update has been published, the new code is downloaded in the background. The next time they come back, wala, things are better. (Of course, clients may opt-out of these free updates. But why?)
What is the difference between the Toad Reader platform and the Toad Reader apps?
The Toad Reader platform is a white label, customizable eReader platform. Clients pay for our services and can then provide beautiful eReader apps with their eBooks to their users.
The Toad Reader apps (iOS, Android and web) are free eReader apps with great Christian eBooks for anyone to use. They exist to provide free reading of wonderful books, and as a demonstration of the Toad Reader platform.
Why not just Kindle?
You can certainly sell your books via Kindle, however Kindle is not yours. Having your own eReader allows you as an organization, institution or business to have professional presentation and control over content and details. Use this to facilitate a subscription service, provide book sets which accompany online learning, or simply keep users in your ecosystem of literature.
And then there is the cost. While getting your own white label eReader does involve an upfront cost, our 1.5% charge on book sales and subscription fees (details) blows Kindle’s 30-65% charges out of the water.
Do you support DRM (Digital Rights Management)?
Our app suite setup provides a solution better than DRM protection. Given that our servers only deliver EPUBs to our apps internally after authenticating the user and confirming his/her access, and since there are no export or download options, your content is protected from unauthorized use. In other words, our approach of NOT delivering the EPUB files directly to users precludes the need of encoding those EPUBs with some sort of DRM solution.
We compare it to protecting your computer against viruses. If you have a Windows machine, then you will want to have the latest, greatest virus protection software. This is like a DRM solution. But if you have a Chromebook, you do not need virus protection software in the first place, given how that operating system is built.
Is it better to sell books through in-app purchases or an e-commerce site?
There is an advantage to each.
In-app purchases make it easiest for users who already have your app downloaded to purchase additional books. The downside, however, is that Apple and Google will take a 30% fee from all in-app purchases. In addition, building out your apps with in-app purchases is more involved and thus comes with additional up-front costs. Contact us for a custom quote.
On the other hand, selling books through an e-commerce website avoids the fees from Apple and Google. It also allows those using your web app to make purchases. The downside is that your apps cannot directly send users to your e-commerce site to make these purchases, per the rules set by Apple and Google. Instead, this approach must fuel sales through email campaigns, your website, and other marketing approaches.
Do you support in-app purchases?
Yes, though this service involves additional up-front costs. Contact us for a custom quote.
Do you provide an e-commerce site as a part of your services?
No. Our clients sell books in a variety of different ways (one-off sales, subscriptions, bundled with online courses, etc). That being the case, we have focussed our energies on providing the best distribution service possible, and leave sales to you.
(See the question about in-app purchases above for an exception.)
Can I launch a eBook subscription service through Toad Reader?
Of course! Our simple and fair pricing works the same whether you sell your books individually or through a monthly subscription.
How is the monthly fee calculated?
The monthly fee is calculated from eBook sales or the number of active users, whichever is greater. The eBook sales calculation is easy: 1.5% of your total eBook revenue (whether from one-off book sales or subscription fees). The active users calcuation is $100 for the first 400 active users plus $0.25 per active user after that.
An “active user” is defined as any user opening an eBook in a given month.
Examples
For $3,000 in eBook sales with 300 active users, a client would pay $100 for the given month.
For $50,000 in eBook sales with 700 active users, a client would pay $750 for the given month ($50,000 x 1.5%).
For no eBook sales and 1,000 active users, a client would pay $250 for the given month (1,000 x $0.25).
How much does it cost if I distribute books for free?
You save the most with our simple and fair pricing, paying just $0.25 per active user per month. This makes our service great for non-profits, internal publication distribution, and promotional give-away books.