Project Gutenberg release Mobile Edition eBooks

by Michael Cook on December 21, 2008

PG Mobile is going to be a new addition to, which will allow mobile/cell phone users to download and read eBooks. The files will be available on the normal download page of any PG eBook. Here is the full Press Release.

Look For PG Mobile – Project Gutenberg’s Mobile Edition

Why using Amazon’s proprietary Kindle when you can use your mobile phone instead? Today’s cell phones offer excellent screens and massive computing power to ensure best reading comfort. Mobile books do not weigh much and you can carry them with you wherever you are. Each Java / MIDP 2.0 enabled cell phone is sufficient – the most common computing platform in the world: There are by far more cell phones shipped worldwide than personal computers.

PG Mobile is a software that transfers the plain text format provided by Project Gutenberg onto small handset screens – together with all the features known from physical books like turning pages, page numbers and bookmarks. Just download the PG Mobile version of any eBook and read it on your phone: All Project Gutenberg mobile eBooks will soon be available for download as an additional file format in the download section of each Gutenberg title on Stay tuned!

PG Mobile is based on the common Java file format (JAR) readable on nearly all mobile handsets. The superior features of the PG Mobile reader offer benefits like landscape mode and bookmarks, among many others. There’s no book size limit, the book size is only limtated by the individual capabilities of your handset.

All mobile books can be downloaded as Java-applications and can then later be installed on the cell phone by using Bluetooth, serial connection, infrared or data cable. Additionally it will be possible to install the books directly over the air by using WAP: Just browse to and click on the JAR-link. And soon the mobile book will automatically be installed on your phone.

Please visit the homepage of the Project Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation:

PG Mobile developed by QiOO Interactive, PG Mobile – JAR-book Technology by QiOO Interactive,

QiOO Interactive is the first producer of free mobile books worldwide. As a result of a university spin-off project at the Institute of Electronic Business e.V.,, the first mobile books were created in summer 2003.

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December 22, 2008 at 1:35 am

Great approach and idea !!!!!!!!
I will start to use it as soon as I see something that interests me.
Let everyone get educated and become literate !

Mike Cook December 22, 2008 at 7:23 pm

This is certainly going to be very interesting for many people in the world – not everyone can afford a dedicated eBook reader (Kindle, Sony) or even an iPhone, so providing a format that is easy for most reasonably modern cellphone is a great thing…and I agree Richie, another option for anyone to become literate.

Edward Vielmetti December 23, 2008 at 6:55 pm

this is all well and good, but I already have a reader (my browser) and my phone does just fine reading books one chapter per “page” (4000-5000 words easily fit onto one long scrolling screen).

Mike Cook December 23, 2008 at 7:52 pm

Hi Edward, I see this as providing more options for users.

Reading as you currently do also works of course, but this new method may perhaps make things just that little bit easier…and what works for one person may not for another.

Edward Vielmetti December 23, 2008 at 9:35 pm

a review based on the existing Qioo “handibibliothek”

about two or three minutes elapsed to open a new book, and when I loaded it I got a java exception. I know this is not the released PG version, but it didn’t go all that well.

Mike Cook December 23, 2008 at 10:16 pm

Thanks for the link to your review…perhaps you got the error because you did a little too much “button-mashing” ;-)
Well, I’m sure these bugs will be ironed out for the releases.

Mark Heftler December 26, 2008 at 2:57 am

I just received a Kindle for Christmas, and couldn’t be more excited. Graduated last May with a degree in Lit, and haven’t read anything since then – luckily, I’m making reading my New Year’s Resolution. That being said, yes, the Kindle is proprietary, BUT it also happily excepts text files. I jumped on Project Gutenberg today and downloaded a number of books as text files, hooked my Kindle up via USB and slipped em right on in about 2 seconds. Now I have lots of great literature to read, all free and easy.


Mike Cook December 26, 2008 at 4:00 pm

Mark, this is one of the great things about Even if they don’t provide eBooks in a format native to your specific reading system, they do provide TXT files, and there probably isn’t a system out there that can’t read these!

Hope you enjoy your Kindle.

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