Papego: Digital reading for printed books

What is Papego?

Papego is a free app that allows readers to continue reading printed books on their mobile phones or tablets. It frees book buyers from the purchase decision between e-book and printed book: When buying a Papego book, they get all the advantages of a real printed book, combined with free digital reading, without paying a Cent more. Papego was introduced at Leipzig Book Fair 2016 and has won the “Neuland 2.0” visitor’s choice award.




How does it work?

Papego is simple and easy to use. No registration necessary, no advertising inside the app, which is available for free in the Apple App Store and Google Play Store.




In what languages is Papego available?

Currently, the app is only available in German. However, the underlying technology is language-independent, so it is easy to adapt the app to any language. If you are a publisher and interested in a non-German version, please contact us.


Is it safe?

With Papego, you may scan a book as often as you want, but the excerpt downloaded previously will be overwritten each time. This means that it is possible to read the whole book on your smartphone, but you have to come back to the original printed book at least four times, after you’ve finished reading the previous section. The excerpt is stored inside the app and cannot be distributed. Therefore misuse of the app is made difficult.


What is the business model?

Papego is free for readers. Publishers pay a fee for each title that is integrated into the Papego database and thus becomes “Papego ready”. The fee consists of a small basic amount and a “heavy usage fee” if the book is very successful and draws lots of Papego users. On average, the fee amounts to less than 3 Cents per book sold.


Why would the publisher pay for Papego?

Papego is a fantastic marketing tool. Unlike other marketing measures, it adds real value to the book and helps readers make a buying decision when inside the store. Even better, booksellers love Papego, because it strengthens the printed book in the digital transformation and helps them sell more, so they will recommend Papego books more often than others and tend to display them more prominently.


Who is behind Papego?

Papego is developed and operated by Briends GmbH, an independent, privately funded start-up based in Hamburg, Germany. The founder, Dr. Karl-Ludwig von Wendt, is a serial entrepreneur and bestselling German novelist (pen name “Karl Olsberg”, see


Do you have any further questions?

Please don’t hesitate to contact us.