EPUB is the key format for creation, distribution and delivery of e-books. It is an XML-based format for reflowable digital books and publications developed by the International Digital Publishing Forum (IDPF).
EPUB allows publishers to produce and send a single digital publication file through distribution, and offers consumers interoperability between software/hardware for unencrypted reflowable digital books and other publications. A growing number of ebook platforms support the EPUB format. Most devices and software platforms – iPad, NOOK, Kobo and so on – support EPUB, with the main exception being the Amazon Kindle.
Along with many other members of the IDPF, EDItEUR took part in the working groups that helped shape EPUB 3. Unlike its predecessor, this new version is suitable for a wide gamut of published product types – magazines, textbooks, corporate publishing – as well as the text-dominated trade books supported by the original 2007 standard. It also supports global languages much better than EPUB 2, is suitable for use in Japan and China, or in Arabic and Hebrew, and on a much wider range of devices and screen sizes.
- Graham Bell presents the main advantages of EPUB 3 over EPUB 2 at the E-books and E-content 2012 conference and University College London (May 2012)
The latest version of the EPUB standard, EPUB 3, is also a highly accessible format for those with various forms of print impairment – see EDItEUR’s Enabling Technologies Framework project for further details.