Kindle for iPhone, iPad updated with more reader-friendly features

Amazon has updated its Kindle app for the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad and added in a few really nice features like real page numbering, percentage read, and Google and Wikipedia lookup.

Kindle now provides real page numbers to books from the Kindle Store. This basically means that Kindle books will mirror the print versions page numbers. This may not sound like a big deal but if you are reading in a group or in class it is very important . Also you can now see how far you have read as a percentage whilst reading the book and the app home screen now shows your progress in a list view.

Finally, and maybe one of the best new features is the ability to lookup words using Google and Wikipedia all from within the application.

The app still does not give you the ability to purchase books through in-app purchase or via iTunes. This apparently was the reason Sony's application was recently rejected. This is sure to fan the flames of the alleged upcoming war with Sony!

A point to note, after the update, most of my books would not open and had to be deleted and downloaded again. Let us know in the comments if you experience the same problem!

[iTunes- Link]

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chrisoldroyd

UK editor at iMore, mobile technology lover and air conditioning design engineer.

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Reader comments

Kindle for iPhone, iPad updated with more reader-friendly features

17 Comments

I couldn't even open the app after the update. It would start to load and then crash. I had to reinstall completely and download my books again.

No problems thus far but I don't see page numbers as described. Either that or Keith Richards' "Life" is over 10,000 pages long!

"The app still does not give you the ability..."
My, my, but we have trouble reporting the truth if it insults Cupertino. Here, I'll fix it:
"Apple still will not allow Amazon the ability..."

Actually, amazon doesn't want to because then they lose 30% of profits to Apple, thus, it is not Apple's doing. Check your facts...

No problems here so far. I wonder if books with page numbers will have to be re-downloaded or synced. I haven't seen one with page numbers yet.

Downloaded the update and did not see the page numbers. I shook the phone, spun it around and then dropped it and the page numbers appeared. Obviously just kidding, but the page numbers just appeared. Not sure how but probably after a resync or switching between books.

Same here.... so it must have come in after switching books or something, as a book I looked at earlier now has the page numbers (and didn't after the update when I posted earlier).

My wife has a kindle and I checked 3 books on my iPad after the update. 2 of the 3 now had page numbers, which pleases her to no end. I think the Google lookup will come in handy as well.

No problems here with update. All my books opened and -- after a while (everything has to resync) -- page numbers showed up.
Separately, anyone notice that NY Times for Kindle purchases are now also downloadable on your Kindle for Android phone app, but NOT on the Kindle for iPhone app (never was, and this new version doesn't change that). Wonder if that's being directed by Apple, Amazon or NYTimes?

Dictionary and Google Lookup feature is my number 1 wish to be offered across iOS as a native feature in iOS 5.

I usually think that Apple makes good decisions about their devices, but this one looks disastrous from this distance. As we approach it, there could be fallout.
Things like Kindle for iPhone may just disappear. In the real world of profit margins, 30% profit is rare indeed. Cam Amazon push down the profit margin that the writers (esp. measly) and publishers (less so) are willing to give up for volume? Then there is Sony, and others like them, that provide other content. What if these folks decide not to play and iOS devices start to look less like paradise and more like a desert?
But lets say that publishers play the game and provide content chasing volume, assuming that certain things can generate volume at all. Then you talk about best sellers and you once again trash the niche markets, the way a change in the tax code a few decades ago got rid of the back list. (When books could be warehoused without take ramification between tax years, you could always buy books previously published by an author. Now a days, eBooks help there, but this could endanger the diversity of the ecosystem once again.) The lock on not being able to charge more on iOS for the convenience of buying on your iDevice is this issue, here. It's killer.
I can see Android and other tablets being subsidized by publishers just to create an environment where they can control their profit margins on their goods.
This was not well thought out, Apple! Yeah, you can squeeze 30% out of apps, but not out of everything. You playing into the bad PR your competition is creating and are particularly looking greedy.

Ahh, under 'Book Extras" it shows the ISBN and publication date. I suppose this is the print version it is matched to, as my books without page numbers don't have this (I only have a few books on my iPod Touch to compare).