Based on a look at the Amazon (AMZN) website and several news reports, the online retailer has put books from publisher Macmillan back onto its virtual shelves. The New York Times reports that a settlement on e-books has been reached as well. Neither company would comment on which Macmillan products were back on Amazon, whether they would remain, or what the terms of an agreement between the two companies looks like.
Macmillan and Amazon were in a dispute about what the online retailer would charge for e-book editions of the publisher's titles. Amazon's retail price for many e-books from Macmillan was $9.99, and Macmillan would like the right to raise those prices to between $12.99 and $14.99 for most of its titles.
The battle between the two companies has been driven, to some extent, by the prices that Apple (AAPL) is likely to charge for e-books purchased for its new iPad. Apple may allow publishers to set higher prices in order to undermine the hold that Amazon and its popular Kindle has on the e-book market.
The move by Amazon to restock physical and e-book versions of Macmillan books may lead observers to conclude that the e-commerce company will knuckle under on e-book prices for other publishers as well, but there is no support for that theory. Amazon has not announced settlements with other book firms like Hachette, which have objected to the e-commerce company's price policies.
Amazon still owns the e-book and e-reader markets. The low price of the $9.99 e-book has helped bring in customers so it may not readily give up that advantage, even if it is still under pressure from some publishers.
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