Amazon has announced that Android users are to get their very own Kindle app, as the company tries to push its e-book store.
The app, due to be released for free on the Android Market some time this summer, joins the already-existing iPhone, PC, Mac, and BlackBerry apps in allowing the user to browse and buy from the Kindle e-book store.
While the package is perfectly usable as a stand-alone e-book reader - although owing to its rather restricted format support there are better options for Android devices out there, such as the open-source FBReader
- the software comes alive when you own a Kindle or Kindle 2 thanks to the company's WhisperSync technology.
WhisperSync works to keep your content synchronised across all devices: the idea is that if you're reading a book on your PC and have to leave, you can pick it up on your smartphone or Kindle and have it ready at the same page you were last on. With full, live synchronisation of bookmarks and the last page read between devices it can prove extremely useful.
Therein lies Amazon's problem, however: the WhisperSync makes the package most
useful for those who already have Kindles, but if you already own a Kindle why are you reading e-books on your Android handset?
That little niggle aside, it's interesting to see that Amazon is taking the growth of Android as a mobile platform seriously enough to port its Kindle software across - and it's a move likely to displease Apple.
The Kindle Android package isn't available quite yet, but Amazon have a registration page
for those wanting to sign up to be updated when it's released.
Do you think that the Kindle software - with its WhisperSync capabilities - is a nice thing to have on your Android handset, or are you worried about the Orwellian overtones
to the whole thing? Share your thoughts over in the forums