Amazon started calling publishers before Steve Jobs had even left the stage at the iPad event, according to the NYT. They wanted to know what Apple promised them—and more importantly, what they promised Apple.
The deal Amazon's been trying to ink with publishers for the couple months would guarantee that books on the Kindle would be the same price as on any other reader, if not, in fact, cheaper—the incentive, a bigger chunk of revenue, though Apple's largely screwed that pooch for Amazon with their own offering, which lets publishers set their own prices, which what publishers are really after: Control. (Though Apple might have more control than expected.)
One of the tidbits with larger implications is that some publishers are running on a month-to-month contract basis with Amazon, instead of a full-blown multi-year agreement, meaning they actually have plenty of room to maneuver in negotiations, especially with Apple at their back. What some publishers might do, they told Bits, is sign the Amazon contract now, and just push a limited free app on the iPad, then switching to a full-blown paid model whenever Amazon's Kindle Touch arrives.
'Cause that'll make thing simple. [Bits]