For over a year the Kindle app for the iPhone has been available in Apple's App Store, and just last week Amazon released a beta version of its Kindle app to the Mac platform, allowing users to purchase e-books on their various Apple electronics. We were wondering what those two moves meant for Amazon when we learned that Amazon also plans to launch a free Kindle app for the iPad and other tablet devices. Now things seem to be a little clearer to us.
The move is huge for Amazon, because this allows them to move into a whole sector of the market which would otherwise be locked into the iTunes Store to download e-books. With the ability to select from over 450,000 titles, this now puts Amazon at the top of the list when it comes to where consumers go to purchase e-books for their on-the-go needs.
The app will also include their Whispersync technology which is found in the PC and BlackBerry versions as well, that will remember and sync up your last page read. Basically this means you can go from device to device, picking up where you last left off on your reading, not to mention keeping all your bookmarks, highlights and notes as well.
Ian Freed, VP for Kindle at Amazon, had this to say to the New York Times:
We have actually developed a tablet-based interface that redesigns the core screen and the reading experience. Our team had some fun with it.
All you customizers out there, don't worry, because the Kindle app for the iPad will also include options to edit the background color and font size to fit your needs, and will even have some neat animations like page turning to make it feel like you're reading one of those real books - you know, with pages and stuff.
How does all this make Amazon the prime e-book supplier? Well, all that is left for them is to conjure up a sweet deal with AT&T, which will allow them to move away from the actual Kindle hardware, since they don't really make much money on the device itself anyway. All that will remain is pure profit in the e-books themselves, which will then launch Amazon into the fame and fortune of the iTunes store. Kudos to the Kindle app developers!