Amazon is thinking of embedding ads in e-books as well as paperbacks printed by its BookSurge, print-on-demand service. Two documents submitted to the US Patent Office reveal the company's plans.
Its dream entails adding banner ads on top of and skyscrape ads beside text on selected pages. The embeded ads could be context senstive so you might find yourself staring at promotions for New Zealand bacon in Animal Farm or Prozac in your copy of the Virgin Suicides. Alternatively the ads might be based on your Amazon profile to target you specifically.
While that could be irritating, there's a plus side. Amazon seems to be toying with tiered pricing - pay less for an ad-supported edition or stump up a bit more for a bother free book. A similar system looks set to be introduced for on-demand dead tree paperbacks from BookSurge.
We're still waiting for the Kindle to come to these shores but would you be bothered by ads intruding into your reading? Or would the chance of getting a cheaper read be worth the hassle? If you need convincing about e-books in general try our 5 Reasons Why You Need A Kindle and review of Sony's alternative.