Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is giving discounts on several popular e-books from Hachette Book Group, which is a publisher that is in disputes with Amazon.com. Apple is currently promoting a sales on several Hachette titles under a “Popular Pre-Orders: $9.99 or Less” section in the book section of iTunes. The section includes upcoming titles from major authors like Robert Galbraith (J.K. Rowling’s pen name), James Patterson, and Michael Connelly.
Amazon and Hachette have been in disputes after negotiations over profit-sharing failed. Amazon.com refused to take pre-order sales of Hachette books as a result. Amazon.com also ceased discounting existing Hachette titles, which is leading to much higher prices.
It is possible that Hachette is lowing wholesale prices on its own titles to challenge Amazon. Or possibly, Apple lowered the retail price on its own and is losing margins to beat Amazon.
It is highly unlikely that Amazon and Hachette will make any kind of settlement in the near future.