Shelfie, which tried a number of approaches to sell bundled e-book and print packages, will close at the end of today.
In an email sent to users on January 30, the company announced that it will be “ceasing operations on January 31.” Shelfie was the brainchild of Canadian engineer Peter Hudson, who formed the Bitlit Media company, which created the Shelfie app, four years ago in Vancouver. The goal was to find a way for readers to get a heavily discounted or free copy of an e-book by taking a picture of the print books on their bookshelf. After submitting the picture, readers would then be allowed to get an e-book of the title.
Hudson was able to get more than 1,000 publishers to participate in the program, and in 2015 added a recommendation engine. The company also engaged in a number of partnerships and promotions in an attempt to build consumer awareness about the product, but apparently without success.
In its note to users, the company said its servers will shut down on January 31 at which point “your Shelfie app will cease to function in a meaningful way.”