iPhone Optimized Kindle Store Now Live

Back in March, Apple's App Store was blessed with the free Amazon Kindle iPhone application. One of the biggest gripes that we had with it was the inability to purchase new books right from the app itself. While we still did not get that ability, Amazon has done the next best thing: last night they flipped the switch on an iPhone optimized Kindle store.

This freshly optimized store is nice to have but what, if anything, will change when iPhone OS 3.0 is released? If you remember, 3.0 has the ability to make in-app purchases. Will Amazon finally allow in-app purchases and give Apple a 30% cut off the top, or will Amazon stick with the current arrangement to avoid paying Apple for every book that is sold?

So what do you, our readers, think about this one? Either way, it should be interesting!

Jeremy

Community editor. Tech enthusiast. All-around geek.

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Reader comments

iPhone Optimized Kindle Store Now Live

7 Comments

I'm skeptical that Amazon would have to give Apple a cut of every eBook sold via the Kindle app. Otherwise, wouldn't Apple also get a cut of every eBay auction won via the eBay iPhone app, every transaction made via the PayPal app, and every purchase made via the Amazon store app?
I'd say there's a huge difference between selling application components and selling wares; Apple has a right to a cut on the former, but not the latter, and Kindle eBooks are definitely the latter.

I think that Amazon's margins are too thin to give Apple a cut of every Kindle purchase. They are already paying the publishers 35% of the LIST price of each Kindle book, which, with Amazon's off-list discounts, is about half what they take in for every Kindle book sold. I love the Kindle app. Surprisingly comfortable to read a whole book on your phone, and helps you make use of little scraps of time waiting in line or for a meeting to start.
Bryan Gilmer, author of crime thriller Felonious Jazz, about a jazzman's artistic crime spree in the suburbs and the legal investigator trying to stop him:http://www.amazon.com/Felonious-Jazz/dp/B00295R17Y

@ WyldKard:
Apple only gets a cut of In-App purchases if you purchase via your App-Store account, where Apple is doing the billing (and assuming some workload and risk).
In-app purchases are already possible with other Applications. This requires that you have an account with each seller. For example, the Stanza reader can buy directly from the phone and download immediately, or later at your convenience.
Not all App developers want to go to the trouble of creating web sites to handle this. Thats why Apple is providing the service. I don't think Amazon would need to take that route, they have a far bigger web presence than Apple.
Since Amazon purchased Stanza, I expect they will embed web purchases in the Kindle app too.
Kindle Store is STILL all about selling books, with far less emphasis on providing access to free books. You really have to dig to find free books on Kindle.

Who wants to read a book on that piddly little iPhone screen?
And isn't the iPhone really for fun yet mindless apps, like "Fart Bomb"?

@ iPhoneer:

Who wants to read a book on that piddly little iPhone screen?

That was exactly my thought.
Then, I downloaded Stanza. Downloaded some free books just to try it out. I was hooked. It works so well that I have downloaded a dozen books I've always wanted to read but never found the time. I now make use of those free minutes in the little room with the noisy fan, and other lonely places.
Sure, I'd love to have a Kindle or the new Kindle DX, but I don't want to look for my reader when I have a few minutes. I know my phone will be with me.
Couldn't your same objection be attributed to the Web Browser or Email client? Who wants to read the news or read email on that piddly little screen. (Other than the 17 million owners).
Really, Stanza and Kindle app are both free, download one and try it before you knock it.