Amazon

Horizontal vs. vertical lock-in: Until DRM dies, iTunes is no worse than Google or Amazon

Horizontal lock-ins are harder to see than vertical ones. When you buy a movie or TV show or book from iTunes, you know it'll only work on Apple devices. If you own anything else, all that content might as well be dead to you. When you buy a movie or TV show or book from Amazon or Google, however, it can feel like a safer investment, like you can play it anywhere and on anything. But it only seems that way. The truth is, you can only ever play your content on the devices the content and service provider — any provider — allows you to play them on, and only for as long as they allow it. We're just as locked to Google's will and servers, and Amazon's, and anyone else's. And we will be until such time as DRM (Digital Rights Management) is dead.

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How anti-Apple, pro-Amazon manipulations have resulted in less competition, higher ebook prices

Sometimes when there's smoke, there's just smoke. And sometimes there are Kindles full of fire. Following the Wall Street Journal's scathing opinion piece last month, another media outlet is now asking questions about the conduct of the Department of Justice, the judge, and the external monitor. Kathleen Sharp goes so far as to call Amazon's crusade "bogus" in her headline on Slate:

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Why can I gift internationally with Amazon... but not iTunes?

Earlier today Apple enabled iBooks gifting. It's been a long time coming. Steve Jobs introduced the iBookstore alongside the original iPad in 2010, and it's taken until well after the 5th generation, iPad Air, shipped in 2013 for gifting to become available. I was ecstatic at first, because I'd been "forced" to use Amazon's Kindle service to gift ebooks until now. Finally, I thought, I could gift iBooks. But I thought too soon. Apple and iTunes, I quickly remembered, only allows gifting to someone who uses the same regional account you do. So, for example, I can only gift an iBook - or iTunes song or movie or App Store app or whatever - from the iTunes Canada store my account is in, to someone who also uses the iTunes Canada store. That eliminates a ton of my friends who just happen to live in the U.S., the U.K., and elsewhere. Amazon, by contrast, not only lets me use my Amazon.ca account to login to Amazon.ca or Amazon.co.uk, but it lets me gift Kindle books, send gift certificates, and even order real material goods, for friends in those countries. In this increasingly important way, Amazon is absolutely pantsing Apple and iTunes.

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Amazon offering 12 days of Kindle book deals starting now

Amazon has kicked off a new 12 days of book deals valid not only on print books, but also on Kindle eBooks. The promotion is said to cover popular and best selling titles, with different deals being offered every day.

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Amazon jumps on the Apple mocking bandwagon with latest Kindle Fire ad

Apple mocking seems to be the hot trend among rival manufacturers of late, and the latest to jump on that bandwagon is Amazon with this, the latest ad for the Kindle Fire HDX 8.9. Can you tell who it's parodying? As with all efforts in this regard, the point comes across that the rival tablet is somehow better than the iPad Air based on a smattering of hardware or software features.

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Amazon Cloud Player for Mac and Windows now available in the UK

More Amazon Cloud Player news today and this time it's good news for Brits, as the Mac and Windows client is now available to download from Amazon UK. The app itself has been around for Mac users for a few weeks, but having downloaded from Amazon U.S. I found the app completely unusable, but with this British version, all is well.

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Amazon Mobile for iPhone and iPad gets the iOS 7 makeover in Europe [Update: U.S. too!]

Amazon has updated its mobile shopping app for the iPhone and iPad with a shiny new iOS 7 redesign, but not in the U.S. it seems. The update comes from Amazon's European based branch, and at this time the North American app looks stuck on the old iOS 6 version. But if you can get it, this version will still let you shop from Amazon U.S. and Canada.

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Amazon Cloud Player back in the App Store with a minor update

We've been hearing about the apparent disappearance of the Amazon Cloud Player app for iOS from the App Store earlier today, and while that seemed to be the case it's now back with update in tow. We're not looking at anything major, but its disappearance may have indicated some bugs to be fixed.

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Best shopping apps for iPhone and iPad

Getting in and out of the mall with your sanity intact can be a challenge in and of itself, nevermind trying to save money in the process. Life can be made just a little easier with the help of a few apps on your iPhone or iPad, however. We've found some of the very best apps for finding deals, amassing coupons, and checking prices.

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Amazon finally releases LOVEFiLM Instant app for iPhone and iPod touch

Amazon released a LOVEFiLM Instant application for the iPad quite some time ago, but until now has been noticeably absent from the smaller screen iOS devices. The long wait has finally come to an end today with the release of a version of the app for the iPhone and iPod touch complete with IMDB integration and AirPlay support.

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