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Saturday, June 30, 2012

Is Kindle for PC app just a teaser?

I’ve noticed this curious anomaly on Amazon lately.

1. This is a Kindle-only book.

2. While the heading at the top says it can be read on Kindle for PC (top circle), the reality is that it only works on actual Kindle devices (and maybe not all of them; I don’t really know if there are just these two, or if there are more.)

(In case you are wondering, if you try to buy the book Amazon gives you a warning that you don’t have the appropriate device registered, and won’t sell it to you.  This is a bit better than iTunes, which has a “caveat emptor” policy – I know this because I have an early version of the iPod Touch, which has fewer and fewer apps available for it.)

3. So the Kindle for PC app will give you a teaser and allow you to read SOME things, but will NOT allow you to read all the books available electronically at Amazon.

So, given that I’ve read a few books (including Dickens Hard Times) on the tiny Blackberry screen, for gosh sake, why don’t I own a Kindle? Mainly because I want to let the tablet and e-book format wars shake out without me. I don’t seem to have a compelling need for any content available only in narrow formats (I already have several Doonesbury books, for example).

Plus, it’s a mistake to think you have to participate in every new advance in technology.  We still don’t have cable TV, for example, and seldom miss it.


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