I can see the options, but I haven't yet bought my own books. I will do it and wait to be able to answer your question. Now since I have both "request printed proof" and request "author copes" I guess I can really order both. The page also asks which market I want to buy from, that is .com; .uk, .fr
As for the price, it's $4.5, not including shipping fees. This is basically the price I was paying on Createspace since I use the 5x8 size, and it makes up for 300 pages. (no pictures)
Fascinating, thanks. When this finally gets sorted out, it will certainly be a plus for European author-publishers, who really can't afford to pay USPS rates for a proof copy. (And though it may be presented as an author copy, what you are getting is almost certainly a proof, if it's only available to you before the book is published.)
Please report back on this, especially about where it's printed. So far, I've only ever heard of books being printed in the UK and in Poland. That information should be on the last page.
And tell us also if the front cover is watermarked, or if it says PROOF on the last page.
(Don't trust KDP to publish a print edition. Don't trust CreateSpace to publish an ebook.)
I received the paperback book today. It's really an author copy, with no "proof" sign or any other visible watermarking. It was printed in Poland. As for the quality, when compared to the copy I had bought from CreateSpace (different cover but same book specifications) I can't see any obvious difference.