Amazon Brings Kindle Books to iPhone, iPod Touch
Earlier this morning, Amazon released a free program for Apple's iPhone and iPod Touch that lets users of either device read books they've purchased on one of the Seattle firm's Kindle electronic-book readers.
The new Kindle for iPhone application -- available in Apple's iTunes Store and in an iPhone or iPod Touch's App Store -- is easier to use than even the simpler Kindle 2 Amazon debuted last month. That's because it does less than that device: This program doesn't let you buy Kindle titles (though you can visit Amazon's Kindle Store in a Web browser and designate titles for delivery to an iPhone or iPod Touch), nor does it display your newspaper, magazine or blog subscriptions.
In that respect, Kindle for iPhone is no competition for other iPhone/iPod readers, such as the free Stanza.
Amazon's application does, however, seem to do a fine job of keeping Kindle readers current with their reading. On an iPod touch, a tap of the "Archived Items" link on the Kindle program's home screen brought up a list of the Kindle books I've bought. I tapped one to download it over the Touch's WiFi connection, and the title arrived a few seconds later, open to a page two chapters behind where I'd set it aside on a Kindle 2 earlier in the evening.
Text looked sharper on the iPod touch's screen, thanks to its higher resolution and immensely superior contrast -- not to mention its ability to draw a new page without hesitation or flickering. And since the iPhone and iPod screens are backlit, unlike Kindle displays, you can read in the dark too. But even with all those advantages, I'm still not sure I'd want to read an entire novel on a 3.5-in. screen.
I give Amazon credit for shipping this program far faster than I'd expected from its vague promises of compatibility. But the arrival of this one program doesn't make the Kindle any sort of open system: You're still limited to reading your not-quite property on the devices that Amazon permits, not the ones you might want.
You're welcome to debate that judgment in the comments -- and share your own experiences with this program, if you've already downloaded Kindle for iPhone.
Posted by: kjhealey | March 4, 2009 9:19 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: Janine1 | March 4, 2009 10:21 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: robpegoraro | March 4, 2009 10:51 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: kjhealey | March 4, 2009 11:28 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: EZReader1 | March 4, 2009 12:13 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: tundey | March 4, 2009 12:56 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: LionelMandrake | March 4, 2009 1:50 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: firstname.lastname@example.org | March 4, 2009 6:25 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: datapolitical | March 4, 2009 7:06 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: Bush--notrelated | March 4, 2009 9:34 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: RHMathis | March 5, 2009 8:47 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: Astrogal | March 6, 2009 6:51 AM | Report abuse
The comments to this entry are closed.