Amazon Kindle eBooks to Now Feature on iPhones So are You Ready!

Amazon Kindle ebooks have been limited to Amazon’s own e-book reader but until now. The Kindle for iPhone application is a nice addition to the device’s universe, one that broadens the horizons of e-books. However, the app has some serious limitations: It lacks an added Storefront gateway, the signature feature and strength of Amazon and it doesn’t support blog content, or magazine and newspaper subscriptions.

According to Kindle tech help, Amazon’s e-book app for iPhone blends well with the device’s service. All you need to do is to get started with your account and password. If you already have electronic books that you have purchased for your device, you can access your saved books on Amazon’s servers and download your e-books that you have saved to your iPhone. But you can’t make purchases within the app for iPhone application itself it came as a surprise as the omission given that Amazon has a separate shopping app for the iPhone.

With Amazon’s WhisperSync service, the app for iPhone can synchronize with your Amazon device to sync up your e-books and bookmarks, and it locates where you left off reading on your app. In my testing I synchronized from the app to an iPhone, but for a reason syncing e-book locations from the iPhone to the device did not work well for me. Also, it is discoverable that downloading e-books may take some time if your iPhone uses AT&T’s EDGE network instead of 3G or WiFi. I took a cup of coffee from the kitchen in the time it took to download an already bought e-book. With 3G turned on, however, e-books are downloaded quickly, though maybe not quite as quickly as with the app.

The app for iPhone is more or less basic. The home screen shows the e-books you’ve downloaded to your iPhone; it is also linked to your archived items, which also permits you to download your other purchased e-books to your iPhone, too. To read an e-book, you’ll need to click on its title to open it (either to the first page of the book or to where you left off on your device device).

Pagination (a feature in the device) works a little differently than is expected. While most text-oriented iPhone apps give you up or down scrolling to view more text, the app for iPhone tries to replicate the pages of a book, so you are required to swipe your finger left or right to view the previous and next pages, respectively. As with the app , you don’t need to select a page so much as you pick a “location” to describe where you are in the book.

When you have an e-book open, tapping on the screen make a set of controls to show up, including text-size settings, a button to add bookmarks, a button to take you to the table of contents from anywhere, a refresh button (that re-syncs the e-book with your device, sending you to the last page you read), and a slider that lets you to jump around the e-book (along with a “snap-back” button that will send you to the last page you read).

Conclusion: Kindle for iPhone is not really for serious e-book reading. if you already have a device, this app likely won’t replace it.