Authors need their own mobs, right? AuthorMob -- a new service that creates iPhone and iPad apps to promote authors and their eBooks -- unveiled itself this week at BookExpo America (BEA), North America’s largest book industry event.

Building Networks Through Increased Functionality

With AuthorMob, publishers and authors can sell and promote their content through apps designed for two of the biggest mobile devices and smartphones, the iPad and iPhone.

Whether you’re an established author, publishing company, or a self-published author, AuthorMob users can use their apps to develop social networks, provide access to blogs, news and media feeds, as well as enhance reading experiences by offering customizable reader controls.

Users can send timed, geotargeted messages to their most avid, influential readers, even when their app isn’t open. Events get shared on Facebook and Twitter.

Users can connect apps to their blog, Twitter, and Facebook feeds. Fans will get updated news from multiple sources on their phone.

AuthorMob’s services also include functionality that allows for geo-targeted messages, a personal bookshelf, which promotes new releases, offers free samples and bonus materials aimed at enticing readers to browse, buy and download books. Users can upload photos, videos, and bios via the AuthorMob web-based app builder and can have their personal full-featured app up-and-running in minutes.

Using eBook Growth to Promote Authors

Capitalizing on the growth of the eBook and eReader market, which has seen wholesale eBook sales surge by 261 percent from January 2009, AuthorMob hopes to help authors and publishers alike reap revenue and rewards, while creating revenue for themselves.

Three pricing plans are available and start at US$ 499 for application development and US$ 29/month for hosting, which includes the first 1,000 fans that install your app, and 100 push notifications per month (after that charge of US$ 0.01 per install or message apply). The standard plan includes up to 10 eBooks, with the Publisher plan allowing for up to 1000 eBooks.

AuthorMob is currently developing Android and BlackBerry versions that permit their same app to run on the vast majority of mobile devices on the market.