The Hachette Book Group plans to launch an EPub3 program and will begin by releasing 16 titles in the format, an interactivity and multimedia-focused standard for enhanced e-books, between November 2012 and March 2013. The release marks Hachette’s commitment to the format and the house also plans to release all of its standard prose novels in EPub3 by March 2013.

Developed by the International Digital Publishing Forum, EPub3 makes it much easier to create fixed-format publications, like comics or complex illustrated works, as well as use audio, video, animation and interactivity in digital content. The 16 EPub3 titles Hachette plans to release include a variety of works in different genres including Po Branson’s psychology title, Nurtureshock, Elton John’s memoir Love is the Cure and William Poundstone’s business title, Are You Smart Enough to Work at Google?.” The EPub3 standard will offer readers a richer multimedia-enhanced reading experience.

Besides facilitating the development of interactive and multimedia content for enhanced e-books, Hachette Book Group president Ken Michaels said the EPub3 standard allows the content to be read on any device. “The industry needs standards like EPub3 that enable a wider range of publishing creativity in the handling of complex layouts, rich media and interactivity capabilities,” Michaels said. “This EPub3 release is an exciting step forward in our publishing program and will greatly benefit our readers as the industry fully recognizes the potential and fully adopts this important standard.”