Ebooks are crazy-expensive at the moment, often much more than a physical book, and that's simply insane. Now it looks like that might change, after the European Commission stuck its oar in. Apple and four major publishers have settled their legal wranglings with the EC, meaning retailers should now be free to discount ebooks, just like they do paperbacks. Cheaper books for all, at last.
Of course, retailers like Amazon do actually have to go and cut their prices, but one assumes they will, now that they actually can. It all stems from the deal the publishers struck over ebooks. Initially, all the publishers demanded the agency model, which essentially allows publishers to set book prices. Physical books are sold under the traditional wholesale model, which allows the retailers to set the price of the books they sell.
The good news here is that ebooks should now come inline with physical book pricing, probably. Consider there's no actual physical product attached to the purchase price, you'd think they should be cheaper than a printed book, but we'll have to wait to see whether that actually happens. Something tells me that's a pipe dream, but I could be wrong. Filling your Christmas Kindle with awesome books could soon be a heck of a lot cheaper. [EC via TNW]