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Amazon launches Kindle for iPhone

Amazon launches Kindle for iPhone

If you're not sure about the Kindle itself, you can try reading Kindle Ebooks on the iPhone.

If you've been interested in owning one of Amazon's Kindle ebook readers, but don't fancy the high cost of ownership – or simply live outside North America – there is hope: the company has released a package for the iPhone that reads Kindle-format books.

As revealed on Electronista early yesterday morning, the software – which has been uploaded to the App Store as a completely free package – is fully compatible with the DRM-enabled ebooks purchased via the Amazon site. Purchases can be made on a Kindle and transferred to the iPhone, on the iPhone and transferred to the Kindle, or on a PC (or Mac) and transferred to either.

While most people who will be interested in this software probably don't have a Kindle – otherwise why not use that to read the ebooks – there are some interesting features should you have been lucky enough to be the recipient of both a Kindle and an iPhone or iPod Touch. Most impressively is the resume functionality: because the Kindle supports a neat inter-device synchronisation system known as Whispersync, it's possible to stop reading a book on the Kindle and have the iPhone copy resume from the last page – and vice-versa.

According to a review of the software over on ExtremeTech, the software supports annotations and highlights that have been created on a Kindle – but, strangely, doesn't allow new notes to be created directly on the iPhone.

Most features you would expect from ebook software are present and correct, including adjustable font sizes – handy, as the iPhone screen is significantly smaller than either the Kindle or Kindle 2 – and full bookmark support. The software even has the ability to browse Amazon's ebook store directly from the iPhone, should you feel the urgent need to make a purchase while out and about – although this is, sadly, just a link to the mobile version of Amazon's website rather than an specialist application as seen on the Kindle.

If you're an iPhone or iPod touch owner, the 2.9MB application is available in the App Store now.

Will this little package keep you going until the Kindle sees a UK release, or do you prefer something a little more open? Share your thoughts over in the forums.

UPDATE: As has been pointed out in the comments, like the Kindle hardware, the Kindle iPhone app is not available outside of the US.

11 Comments

Discuss in the forums Reply
Jamie 5th March 2009, 17:23 Quote
I don't think the screen on the iPhone/IPod Touch is big enough for reading a book. I'll stick to my lump of dead tree and ink thanks.
BioSniper 5th March 2009, 17:26 Quote
I've used Stanza on the iPhone before and its actually quite acceptable. The problem with the Kindle app is that it's not available in the UK at all :(
_DTM2000_ 5th March 2009, 17:46 Quote
I spend far too long staring at LCD screens as it is. I'll stick with real books thanks.
Fredrics 5th March 2009, 18:06 Quote
According to my itunes, it is not available for the uk...
Sifter3000 5th March 2009, 18:30 Quote
Yes, US only. Booo! Thanks for pointing it out, story has been updated.
Neophyte4Life 5th March 2009, 19:04 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by _DTM2000_
I spend far too long staring at LCD screens as it is. I'll stick with real books thanks.

likewise
Angleus 5th March 2009, 20:58 Quote
It would be cool if it was actually available in the UK, but I kinda think the whole Kindle thing is doomed for failure anyway

(but I base that on no actual knowledge of sales, profits etc.)
wharrad 5th March 2009, 22:09 Quote
Once saw an ad for a kindle like device (may have even been kindle).

I loved the fact a major selling point was the battery life... ... ...



It's the definition of solving a problem which doesn't exist! Sorry for negativity there, if it helps the kids read and all, bargain
whisperwolf 5th March 2009, 22:55 Quote
The only way I will start using ebooks is when they give a digital copy away when you purchase the hard copy of the book. I like books, I like having bookcase, upon bookcase filled to overflowing, but when travelling I can see the point of an ebook reader with lots of books taking up less space, but I would still want the hardcopy at home and I am never going to buy two copies of the same book.
p3n 6th March 2009, 09:16 Quote
Seen a few vids of the kindle, the 'animation' of a page drawing would be very offputting imo - it seems to turn the page all black (no charge?) then charge the areas that dont need to be seen leaving the text behing - either way it looks like some sort of LCD repair...
perplekks45 7th March 2009, 15:08 Quote
Not availible in the UK but Waterstone's sell a Kindle look-alike and you can get a pretty similar tool for the DS.

Still, not for me, thanks. Just interferes with my plan to have a dedicated library in my house/flat once I'm 40. :)
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