There are many advantages to ebooks — they are accessible instantaneously, very portable and they don’t require any trees to be cut down. But there is something magical about physical books and there are very few consumers who would trade in their entire bookshelf for the digital alternative. Luckily there are platforms such as Shelfie, which enable readers to have their cake and eat it too. Shelfie is an app, created by Bitlit, that lets users obtain free or discounted ebooks of physical volumes they already own.
To begin, users download the free app to their smartphone and create a profile. Then they snap a picture of their bookshelf and upload the image. The platform then searches its database and finds out which books are available. Shelfie then provides free copies of eligible books that the user has already purchased, courtesy of various partnerships with publishers. The platform already has over 100,000 ebooks available, which can be downloaded and read on any device. In addition, users can browse each others’ bookshelves to obtain recommendations and inspiration for their next purchase.
Could a similar service be offered for music and film lovers?