Kobo Offers Ebooks to Southwest Airlines Passengers

In Global Trade Talk by Dennis Abrams

Southwest Airlines

Ebookseller Kobo is offering free ebooks and previews to Southwest Airlines passengers through the airline’s inflight entertainment portal.

By Dennis Abrams

Kobo Logo

Kobo and Southwest Airlines have cooperated to offer an in-flight reading platform, which launched on May 6 and includes both full books and extended previews of top titles and new releases across all genres. Participating publishers include Penguin Random House, HarperCollins Publishers LLC, Simon & Schuster, Inc., Hachette Book Group, Macmillan Publishers, Kensington Publishing Corp., ECW Press, Open Road Media, Bauer Communications and others.

(Digital Book World reports that the service currently offers 140 titles, of which 85% are full-text editions. That number is expected to grow.)

Once onboard a Southwest Airlines flight, customers can use their own Wi-Fi enabled devices to connect to the entertainment portal and access to hundreds of top-selling titles in Kobo’s library.

And if the passenger doesn’t have time to finish their book? After landing, they will receive an email from Kobo with information on how to purchase the book at their destination.

“Since day one, we have been driven by the singular goal of making digital reading easier – allowing booklovers to read more wherever and whenever they want,” said Michael Tamblyn, President and Chief Content Officer, Rakuten Kobo. “Working with GEE allows us to take this passion for empowering readers to the skies, making a favorite in-flight pastime easier than ever.”

“We’re very excited to partner with Kobo to provide a unique in-flight digital eBook experience,” added Alexis Steinman, SVP of Digital Products at GEE. “Reading is one of the most popular forms of entertainment for airline passengers, and GEE’s partnership with a leading eBook platform will provide value both to our customer Southwest, and to its passengers.

About the Author

Dennis Abrams

Dennis Abrams is a contributing editor for Publishing Perspectives, responsible for news, children's publishing and media. He's also a restaurant critic, literary blogger, and the author of "The Play's The Thing," a complete YA guide to the plays of William Shakespeare published by Pentian, as well as more than 30 YA biographies and histories for Chelsea House publishers.