Inkling is making its $30m digital publishing platform, Habitat, available free to everyone. There’s even a special academic version, with tight Google Search integration. Inkling takes a 30 percent cut of each sale via the Inkling store, but waives that if you’re a bona fide academic.

It seems Inkling is going free in order to compete with Amazon — Inkling only has around 400 titles in its store and so obviously needs more if it’s going to match Amazon. Might be worth a look if you need to create ePub and HTML5 publications with…

“interactive e-books with HD video, interactive features and 3D content”.

The drawback seems to be that the DRM sounds ferocious, and there’s no mention in the FAQ of the ability to produce a DRM-free ePub. Which seems to imply that you get locked into Inkling as your sole distribution system?