Seeming to have lost interest in competing with Amazon, Apple Books and Google Play Books, Microsoft is shutting down the ebooks category at the Microsoft Store.
Users would now no longer be able to buy, rent or pre-order ebooks from the software giant’s facility.
“Starting April 2, 2019, the books category in Microsoft Store will be closing. Unfortunately, this means that starting July 2019 your ebooks will no longer be available to read,” the company wrote in a post on its support page on Tuesday.
The move comes as part of the software giant’s strategy to help streamline focus points for Microsoft Store.
However, users would still be allowed to read their rented books through the duration of the rental period.
For users who had already placed pre-orders, the company said, the orders are being cancelled and nothing is being charged for the purchases.
“You’ll get a full refund for all book purchases. We recommend you pre-order at another digital book store,” the post said.
Microsoft would begin processing refunds back to users’ original payment methods, starting July.
ZDNet’s Mary Jo Foley, a long-time Microsoft watcher, reports that Microsoft’s ‘official reason’ for shutting down the ebooks category is its attempt to “streamline the strategic focus of the Microsoft Store.”