Amazon launches iPhone-optimized Kindle storefront

Amazon launches iPhone-optimized Kindle storefront

Summary: The iPhone Kindle application is a great way to keep reading your Kindle content while out and about when your Kindle is back at home. One big complaint people have had though is the difficult way to purchase Kindle content to read on the iPhone if you do not own a Kindle. You could use the Amazon website, but it was clunky on the iPhone. Amazon announced the launch of an iPhone-optimized Kindle site that makes it much easier to find and purchase Kindle content on the iPhone. Simply tap the Get Books icon in the Kindle for iPhone application to access the new iPhone-optimized store.

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The iPhone Kindle application is a great way to keep reading your Kindle content while out and about when your Kindle is back at home. One big complaint people have had though is the difficult way to purchase Kindle content to read on the iPhone if you do not own a Kindle. You could use the Amazon website, but it was clunky on the iPhone. Amazon announced the launch of an iPhone-optimized Kindle site that makes it much easier to find and purchase Kindle content on the iPhone. Simply tap the Get Books icon in the Kindle for iPhone application to access the new iPhone-optimized store.

The new Kindle store site has a search box and several default ways to filter ebook content, including books by category, NY Times best sellers, Kindle top sellers, new & noteworthy, and recommendations for you. You can also access and change your 1-click settings and manage your account.

I still look forward to more functionality being added to the Kindle for iPhone application, but this is a good start in making content more readily available. It would be great to see the application integrate support for the store in the future as well.

Topics: Software Development, Amazon, Browser, Hardware, iPhone, Mobility

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7 comments
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  • Books????

    Who wants to read a book on that piddly little iPhone screen?
    And isn't the iPhone really for fun yet mindless apps, like "Fart Bomb"?
    iphoner
    • Well said

      <i>Who wants to read a book on that piddly little iPhone screen?</i>

      That's the one-line synopsis of where I was going with my post. :)
      bhartman33
      • That would be me...

        I have been using Palm based devices (IIIc, M515, Tx) to read books for years. I haven't suffered from eye strain or headaches and, while, I do reverse the text to white on black though. They may not be my first choice I haven't had any problems.

        I also listen to Books-On-Tape and read printed material. So it is not like ebooks have cut me off from reading; they have expanded my opportunities to read.
        Duns Scotus
        • PDA e-Readers

          <i>I have been using Palm based devices (IIIc, M515, Tx) to read books for years. I haven't suffered from eye strain or headaches and, while, I do reverse the text to white on black though. They may not be my first choice I haven't had any problems.</i>

          I've certainly been there, done that. I can't say I didn't <i>like</i> reading on the IIIc, m515, or TX when I did it, but at that point there were a lot fewer options, and I wouldn't've known Project Gutenberg from "Guten Tag!". There are a lot more options now. Besides Kindle, there are other readers by manufacturers like Sony, iRex, etc -- with more coming. I think what this means is that reading a book on an iPhone or Palm-type device will be the equivalent of texting with a standard telephone keypad, rather than QWERTY keyboard. Sure, you can do it if you want, but the more serious you are about your reading, the less a cell phone screen (<i>any</i> cell phone screen) will do.

          It makes more sense to me to use these kinds of apps in conjunction with a cell phone, but even that is somewhat of a stretch. If you only have a couple of minutes to read, it's easy enough to use a cell phone reader to do it, but the amount of text you can read in that time is probably negligible, compared to the book you're reading. In the amount of time you'd spend reading, say, 5 pages worth of text, there are probably better ways you could entertain yourself with the iPhone, I'd think.
          bhartman33
  • RE: Amazon launches iPhone-optimized Kindle storefront

    It's certainly a cool-looking app. I'll say that much for it.

    I actually got my first look at an iPhone in person yesterday. There were aspects of it, like the home screen interface, that looked pretty decent. But I can't see how it's anything other than an epic fail as an ebook reader. The screen is just too small. Sure, it's a bigger screen than you'd find on a lot of phones (maybe even <i>most</i> phones), but that doesn't mean that makes it an acceptable ebook reader. I think that the Kindle (and other readers, to give them their due) has changed the game in that regard.

    Sure, you could try and make the case that it's better to be carrying one device that has both your phone functions and your e-books, but I think that's a hard case to make. The reason the iPhone works as a converged music player and phone is because it does both functions reasonably well. The same can't be said for the iPhone as an e-reader, though. In fact, thinking of the iPhone as an e-reader makes me appreciate more fully where the rumors about the "iTablet" are coming from. Such a tablet, done right, <i>could</i> be a good e-reader. If Apple really wants to come out with such a device, I suspect they'll wait until color e-Ink is reasonably affordable (i.e., to where they can get it on a device priced < $1000).
    bhartman33
    • iPhone and Kindle are a perfect pair

      I wouldn't want to read ebooks only on the iPhone, but combined with a Kindle they are a perfect pair. You can read away on the Kindle and then for those times when you find yourself stuck in a line for 15 minutes you can pick up your latest book right where you left off on your Kindle thanks to the WhisperSync technology.
      palmsolo (aka Matthew Miller)
  • What is holding readers back?

    You have the power to do all this, and MUCH more inside an iphone. It just is a small device so as to fit in your pocket. It's also VERY reasonably priced, but small for this.

    Why, oh why, can't they get off their collective asses and produce a tablet sized unit with a screen (or several sizes of screens) that are conducive to reading book-like material?

    The brains of an iTouch in a body of substantial size, with battery and a lil' storage filling the bulk left over to support the obviously more power hungry screen. The idea is so simple I have yet to come up with why it is not being done, let alone for a reasonable price.

    Say what you will about ipods vs. whatever devices; everyone has their preference. But, without doubt, the basic functionality of a simple itouch and it's interface is already a perfect fit to this to -start- the trend. The 'better mousetraps' will follow.

    -This- would widely replace printed books, particularly scholastic/instructional texts and daily periodicals, for many people. I can only assume such a sharp change in the printing curve might scare the hell out of publishers.. much like the cd and mp3 did to the music companies.

    When they wake up from their fear induced stupors, however, maybe they would realize the market can support both, and, people tend to buy electronic media with amazing enthusiasm, likely increasing sales at a high rate. Yeah, they will probably include sickening drm... but that is for someone else to rant about.

    I can foresee any myriad habits for people buying books in this way: the die hards who simply want to own the print, as so MANY of my friends do. Then the ones of those with print and electronic copies so they can have their libraries with them too. Browsing for new releases on the device, yet still going to the bookstores to peruse the titles regardless.. probably looking for ones that you buy print & electronic versions of in combo.

    This will not kill print in any way. Not in our lifetimes, but it might take a bit of the wasteful burden of trash/recyclables away. One can only hope. But, I can just envision a college student carrying a very light pack, and never having the excuse of 'leaving that one book behind' .. particularly because it simply wouldn't fit.
    wolftalamasca