kindle for iphone: first impressions

March 4, 2009

I was excited to hear about the Kindle for iPhone app that Amazon released today. I downloaded it the first chance I had to see how it would work.

On the plus side, it is free. Hard to beat that. It was easy to set up. Once installed, I logged in and could see all of the Kindle books I have previously bought available for download. Once I downloaded a book and gave it a chance to sync, I picked it right up where I had left off on my Kindle. Beautiful The reading experience isn’t bad, especially if you want to squeeze in a few pages late at night or while standing in a line.

While this app might be appealing for some uses, it won’t replace a Kindle. If you read at a decent rate, you will be flicking the screen often to turn the page, which could get tedious from repetitive repitition. Two notable features are missing. it can’t be used to underline or make notes, which is a key feature for me. It also can only read books purchased from Amazon, so some of texts I’ve converted for use on my Kindle can sync.

Personally, I could see how it might be useful, especially for a fiction book that I’m not as likely to want to make notes in. From Amazon’s perspective their concern is to boost interest in the Kindle, and I think it will do well for them.

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