Sony Exiting eBook Markets in Europe and Australia

Sony Closure

Now that the Sony to Kobo transition is complete in the United States and Canada, Sony has announced that they are exiting other markets too.

The Sony ebook stores in Europe and Australia are being closed down and all accounts are being sent to Kobo.

It’s not surprising given the closures in the North America market, but there was still slight hope that Sony wouldn’t give up on ebook reading for good—that is clearly not the case anymore. Their Japan store is now the only one left standing, and it probably won’t last much longer either.

This is another sad tale of Sony giving up on something that they had an integral part in starting. Now ereader fans will have even less choices in the shrinking ebook reader market.

Once again Kobo is going to be the main beneficiary. Sony is giving all of their customer accounts to Kobo. No one has ever mentioned money in all this; I wonder if Kobo is paying to receive customer accounts or if there is some kind of other deal going on. Either way it’s a major boon for Kobo.

“We are delighted to be working with Sony to reach the most passionate Readers in Europe and Australia, by bringing the Kobo world to Reader Store customers – keeping them reading their favourite stories,” said Takahito Aiki, CEO, Kobo. “Both companies share the goal of putting the most passionate booklovers at the centre of the reading experience. This means providing the best experience through innovative technology coupled with a vast and comprehensive digital reading ecosystem.”

The European Sony ebook stores in the UK, Germany, Austria, as well as the Australia store, will be closed on June 16th, 2014.

Customers will receive an email in late June with a link to transition their ebooks and account over to Kobo.

Like with the US transfer, most ebooks will make it to Kobo, but not all. So it is advisable for customers to login to their Sony accounts and download their ebooks to ensure none get lost during the transfer.

Here are the links to the FAQ’s for each market:

Kobo – FAQ

Sony (UK) – FAQ

Sony (Germany) – FAQ

Sony (Austria) – FAQ

Sony (Australia) – FAQ

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8 Responses to “Sony Exiting eBook Markets in Europe and Australia”

  1. I’m still waiting for my Sony (US) account to get transferred to Kobo. I’ve been working with Kobo Care for over a month, and once spent over an hour on the line waiting for Sony support to pick up. At least the wait time for Kobo has never been an issue.

    The latest word from Kobo, yesterday: “We have been able to determine that your case is currently in the hands of the team responsible for correcting failed migrations. Your migration will be done by the end of this week.”

    • That really stinks. Hope you get everything worked out soon. I wonder how many people that has happened to.

    • Still no transfer. Now Kobo’s stopped doing telephone customer service, so I’ve sent a reply email.

      One week to go until Sony stops doing the transfers. I’m not happy.

    • Still no transfer. Kobo’s customer support people assure me that my credit balance is safe, although temporarily inaccessible. Of course, they can’t make any assurances about my e-book library, but I’ve got that well backed-up.

      May 31 isn’t far away.

    • Got an email from Kobo. They’ve closed the ticket with no action. My account hasn’t been migrated and won’t be migrated: “we will be unable to assist you further with merging the account to Kobo.”

      They also said it was my fault because “Sony has announced it officially closed its Sony Reader store as of May 15 th/2014. They have sent a variety of emails with the details to merge accounts to Kobo over the past six months to assist you and their many other customers with this transition.”

      I’m steamed. They won’t even give me my credit balance. This, despite Sony’s assurance that, “If you transfer to Kobo before May 31, 2014, your unused credits will transfer with you, and you will be able to use your credits for future purchases at the Kobo Store.”

      • I’d be steamed too. Kobo’s customer service is notorious for being unhelpful and frustrating, but they just took it to a whole new level with this. I can’t believe they try to blame you for their incompetence. That’s just salt in the wound. I’m guess you won’t be buying any ebooks from Kobo anytime soon…

  2. It’s official. Kobo tells me there’s nothing they can do for me. I’ve lost my credit, and that’s too bad.

    They had the nerve to send me a survey asking what I thought of the customer service I got. Oh yeah, I responded.

    I’m done with Kobo.