Google gearing up to launch E-book service called Google Editions

Reports are coming in that Google is planning to launch its anticipated E-book service called Google Editions. The idea behind the service is a bit different from the major competitors in that the books can be purchased through a variety of online retailers and can be accessed anywhere through a Google account.

It’s unclear at this point whether or not Google is planning a dedicated hardware reader like the Kindle, but given the emerging popularity of smartphones and tablet computers (including the upcoming Chrome tablet?), chances are they will just release a series of apps for multiple platforms and devices.

While no specific date has been set, Google Editions is slated to launch in the US by the end of the year, and internationally sometime in Q1 of 2011.

[via WSJ]