Frequently Asked Questions - Content

Anything! However, Stanza is especially designed for reading large bodies of text where formatting is not an integral part of the reading experience. It is more appropriate for reading novels, stories, essays, and news articles. Graphics-heavy content like textbooks and multimedia web sites will be difficult to read using Stanza.

Stanza iPhone and iPod Touch currently supports the eReader DRM, meaning that any files in the eReader format can be opened on your device. Stanza Desktop does not currently support any DRM at all. In the coming weeks and months we expect to expand our options for reading content with various forms of digital rights management.

Stanza Desktop contains built-in reading support for DRM-free Amazon Kindle, Mobipocket, Microsoft LIT, and PalmDoc, as well as Microsoft Word, Rich Text Format, HTML, and PDF. Stanza iPhone / iPod Touch supports eReader with or without DRM and ePub without DRM. More details can be found on Stanza's Supported Formats page.

A pdb file is just a generic container, a bit like a zip file: it can contain anything. It's really just a file extension, and it doesn't tell you anything about the format of the file contained within. Usually a file ending .pdb is either in Mobipocket format, PalmDoc format, or eReader format.

If the file turns out to be in the Mobipocket format, then it can be opened in Stanza Desktop if is not DRM-protected. You can then use Stanza Desktop to transfer it the iPhone. if it is DRM-protected Mobipocket format, you won't be able to read it with Stanza on the iPhone or Stanza Desktop.

If the file turns out to be in the eReader format, it cannot be opened in Stanza Desktop yet, but it can be opened on Stanza iPhone regardless of whether it has DRM or not. Here are detailed instructions for transferring your personal content in eReader format to your iPhone:

There are numerous places to find eBooks on the internet. Note that Stanza Desktop does not yet support books encumbered with Digital Rights Management (DRM); however, Stanza iPhone / iPod Touch now supports DRM-encrypted eReader formatted books in addition to DRM-free ePub and eReader files.

  • Project Gutenberg: Millions of free, public domain books, generally available in text and HTML formats. Includes just about any classic book you can think of from before 1923, and a few more recent books.
  • The Internet Archive: The Internet Archive is scanning books in libraries around the world and making them available for free in a range of formats, including searchable PDFs of the original page images. They have about half-a-million texts so far, and counting.
  • Baen Free Library: A pioneer in the e-book field, Baen makes selected titles from it’s line of science fiction and fantasy books available for free download. Lots of good stuff for SF fans! There are also instructions to add a Baen Free Library catalog for Stanza iPhone users.
  • A huge directory of free e-books, most of which are self-published. You’ll have to do some digging to find quality stuff here, but there are plenty of good books to be found with some patience.
  • Memoware: Memoware includes tens of thousands of public domain books, formatted for a wide range of portable devices. They also have a premium bookstore where more current, mainstream books can be bought.
  • All Romance eBooks: ARe is a large e-book store focused on women's fiction and romance eBooks and have over 6000 DRM-free ePubs romance titles available. All of the 6000 titles have excerpts available in the All Romance eBooks catalog on Stanza iPhone / iPod Touch.
  • Fictionwise: A huge e-book bookstore, specializing in romance and science fiction, with titles formatted for a range of devices. Check out their always-changing selection of free e-books drawn from their collection. Note that only books in "multiformat" will be readable with Stanza Desktop. Stanza iPhone can read any book from the Stanza Books by Fictionwise Store.

Stanza does have the ability to read contemporary content, provided that the electronic book is in a format that Stanza supports, and that the book is either unprotected by "Digital Rights Management" (DRM) or uses the eReader DRM. The majority of contemporary works are protected by DRM, which prevents books from being read on "unauthorized" devices and generally prohibits the copying of the book. The only DRM format currently supported by Stanza is the eReader DRM, although we are looking to expand this in the coming weeks and months.

One place to purchase books that use Fictionwise's eReader DRM is the bookstore at

Other places where you can obtain books (both free and commercial) are: