Is it smart to give away the very software that makes your hardware appealing? Hard to say, but Amazon has been doing it for years. The Kindle used to be the only way for consumers to shop for digital books in Amazon's eBookstore, but that soon changed. Amazon
Apps for smartphone platforms, and most recently, the iPad. This essentially lets any major smartphone (or the iPad) tap into Amazon's eBookstore without first requiring a Kindle. Of course, Amazon takes a cut out of every book that's sold through that store, so it's probably a smart move in the long run. They may lose out on a few Kindle sales, but they'll probably make up for it by putting the Kindle eBookstore into the hands of so many individuals.
With that in mind, it's easy to understand why Amazon has made this latest move. The company is starting the year off by announcing one more reason that it's cool to sidestep the Kindle hardware if you had your heart set on one of the many Windows 7 and Android-based tablets coming to market. The company has confirmed that they will be pushing out apps for Windows tablets and Android tablets in 2011, giving the onslaught of tablets that are destined to arrive this year access to the company's "Buy Once, Read Everywhere" eBookstore.
This means that any digital book purchased within the Amazon ecosystem can be viewed and read on any device that supports Kindle Apps, or on the Kindle itself. So you could purchase a book and begin reading it on your forthcoming tablet, and then pick up where you left off on your DROID X, iPad, Mac or PC. The Kindle Store offers the largest selection of books people want to read, including 100 of 110 New York Times Bestsellers and New Releases from $9.99. Millions of older, out-of-copyright, pre-1923 books are also available to read.
Amazon isn't giving out a hard release date when it comes to availability, largely due to the fact that release dates for supported tablets are still unknown. We'd say both of the new platforms will probably be available to download by the summer or fall of this year, though.
Amazon to Introduce Free Kindle Apps Tailored for Android and Windows LCD Tablet Computers
New tablet computers coming in 2011 will have access to Amazon's free "Buy Once, Read Everywhere" apps that let readers choose from over 775,000 Kindle books and read them across the most popular devices and platforms
SEATTLE, Jan 04, 2011 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- (NASDAQ: AMZN) - For over two years, Amazon has been building and introducing a wide selection of free "Buy Once, Read Everywhere" Kindle apps to enable customers to read their Kindle books on the most popular devices and platforms. Last year, Amazon tailored a Kindle app specifically for the size, look and feel of the iPad and it has become a top ten free app for iPad. Today, Amazon announced that Kindle apps will also be tailored specifically for Android and Windows based tablets to enable customers to access the Kindle Store, and with it the largest selection of the books people want to read. Like all Kindle apps, the new Kindle apps built for Android and Windows tablet computers will let customers "Buy Once, Read Everywhere"--on Kindle, Kindle 3G, Kindle DX, iPad, iPod touch, iPhone, Mac, PC, BlackBerry, and Android-based devices. For more information about the free Kindle apps, go to www.amazon.com/kindleapps.
"Kindle is light weight, easy on the eyes with a paper-like Pearl e-ink display, and has a full month of battery life. It's purpose-built for reading. Many people are buying both a Kindle and an LCD tablet computer," said Dorothy Nicholls, Director, Amazon Kindle. "We're very excited to support the upcoming Android and Windows LCD tablet computers with free Kindle apps that we'll tailor for the particular devices. Our Whispersync technology makes it simple to move back and forth between devices. Read on your Kindle, read on your tablet, read on your phone. We'll keep track of your last page read, and make it easy."
The Kindle Store offers the largest selection of books people want to read, including 100 of 110 New York Times Bestsellers and New Releases from $9.99. Millions of older, out-of-copyright, pre-1923 books are also available to read. Kindle books offer readers many additional unique advantages, including:
* "Buy Once, Read Everywhere" apps let you sync and read your books, last page read, bookmarks, notes and highlights across Kindle devices and the most popular devices and platforms
* Amazon's Worry-Free Archive automatically backs up your books and highlights online in your Kindle library where they can be re-downloaded wirelessly anytime on any Kindle device or app
* Amazon.com customer reviews, personalized recommendations and editorial reviews
* Instant 1-click buying using your Amazon account information
For over two years, Amazon has been building and introducing a wide selection of free "Buy Once, Read Everywhere" Kindle apps for iPad, iPod touch, iPhone, Mac, PC, BlackBerry and Android-based devices that let customers read and sync their reading library, bookmarks, notes, and highlights with the device or platform of their choice. Learn more about Kindle apps at www.amazon.com/kindleapps.