Kindle

If an eBookstore Falls in the Internet and No One Hears It…

eBooknewser reported today that Amazon quietly shut down Mobipocket, an ebook store that those of us with PDA roots probably remember fondly. Amazon purchased Mobipocket and still uses their format as the basis for Kindle books. After reading the post, I headed over to Mobipocket and found what appears to be the internet equivalent of a broken, abandoned storefront. There’s no announcement that Mobipocket is gone, but the files appear…


Does Anyone Buy eBook Readers for the Hardware Anymore?

There’s an interesting (and honestly, inevitable) trend in the book world lately: no one’s talking hardware anymore. Yes, there’s new devices, and sales are touted when they’re impressive. But the big announcements that come up again and again are “ebook sales are increasing by these triple digits/these authors are making this much money through ebooks/we have this many free ebooks, etc”. Plus, all those lovely ebooks are available on tablets,…


Kindle Lending Library and Direct Publishing Program Is a Home Run So Far!

The Kindle Lending Library and Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) program debuted this past fall, and so far they’re off to a great start whether you’re a consumer or an author. As a refresher, the Lending Library is available to anyone with a Kindle and an Amazon Prime account, and you can download one book per month free of charge through the service. The KDP program offers perks to authors willing…


SolarKindle Cover Lets You Charge Your Kindle without an Outlet!

Ordinarily, I am skeptical of “solar-powered chargers”, as they seem more gimmick than useful gear, but a solar-powered Kindle charger is a stroke of genius! Kindles don’t require charging more often than once a month or so, meaning finding sunlight to charge isn’t an inconvenience. Plus a Kindle is one of the few devices that might get used regularly on the beach, or camping, or other places where outlets aren’t…


Free eBooks from the Local Library!

I swung by my local library today and discovered they put together a very clever way of promoting library eBooks. They had free “gift cards” out for “free eBooks”, which was just a printed card with the library’s website on the front and QR code for the site on the back. The marketing campaign signs around the library suggested people could give them alongside Kindles, NOOKs, etc.


M-Edge Suing Amazon; You Had Better Stock Up on Kindle Cases Now!

M-Edge makes some awesome cases for the Kindle and other ebook readers. They made the case I had my original Kindle in for many years, and I loved it. We’ve also covered many of their iPad cases here at Gear Diary and they consistently receive high marks for build quality and useful, eye-catching designs. Unfortunately, M-Edge is alleging in a lawsuit that Amazon doesn’t feel the same way about their…


SugarSync Update Helps Add to Android App Market Confusion

Yesterday I got a message from SugarSync, one of my favorite Cloud Storage companies. They were announcing, amongst other things, that: Kindle Fire – SugarSync is now available for the Kindle Fire, so you can access all your files from the SugarSync Cloud. That was great – I clicked on the link in the email, checked out the blog post, then clicked the link in the article to grab the…


Wired Illustrates the Limitations of Paper Publishing

Over at Teleread, they’ve called Wired magazine onto the carpet for a set of eBook reader reviews that pitted the low-end Kindle against touchscreen, higher-end competitors, and for not breaking out the Special Offers/non-special offers versions of the Kindle. The Wired writer responsible for the segment responded in the comments, and after a few days of mulling it over, it seems to me that his explanation hurts print magazines more…


Give Your Amazon Kindle Touch a BodyGuard

A few weeks ago we took a look at the BodyGuardz Armor Carbon Fiber for iPad 2 and iPhone 4S. While it doesn’t guard from drops or bumps, the Armor does protect the entire back of my iPad from scratches. I like that and now use my iPad sans case more often than ever. On Cyber Monday the company offered some steep discounts on other products so I ordered a…


eReader Critical Mass and Other Vacation Tech Tidbits

During my week away I noticed that eReaders seem to have hit critical mass. Yes, this year, more than any other, saw Kindle’s, nook’s and iPads in use on the beach and at the pool. (Interestingly, I did not see a single Kindle fire!) I have seen an uptick in the use of devices over the past few years but this year seemed to show a huge jump in their…


The Gear Diary Kindle Fire Tablet Review

November 15th saw the release of what will quickly become the #2 selling tablet of all time: the Amazon Kindle Fire. Since then we have seen plenty of ‘race to be first’ reviews, but my goal was to spend some time integrating the Fire into my life before completing my review. This week we also saw the usability study that looked at the issues around the 7″ screen specifically with…


Agency eBook Pricing Model under Anti-Trust Scrutiny!

The European Union has finally stepped up to handle the biggest issue facing the economy today. It’s a long time coming, but someone is finally asking questions and looking for answers. Yes, the “agency model” for ebooks is finally being investigated! What, you thought I meant something else? 😉 According to Businessweek, several publishers, as well as Apple, are listed in the investigation, but not Amazon. My guess is that…


Kindle Fire Usability Study Speaks to the Entire 7″ Android Tablet Market

The web is abuzz today with the ‘Kindle Fire Usability study from UseIt.com, which can be summed as stating that “Amazon.com’s new Kindle Fire offers a disappointingly poor user experience.” Here are a few points of note: Fat-Finger Problem Makes Mobile Sites Superior The most striking observation from testing the Fire is that everything is much too small on the screen, leading to frequent tap errors and accidental activation. You…


iBooks Grows Up, Is It Enough to Make it Your eReading App?

The iBooks apps for iOS, that means iPad, iPhone and iPod touch, just made the leap to version 1.5. It is a nice update that includes a new arrangement of annotations, full screen reading mode, new fonts and an awesome new nighttime reading mode. I used the nighttime reading mode last night for a bit and it worked great. It is nice to see iBooks maturing but it also reminded…


One More Tablet Gone; Can Microsoft Avoid the Same Fate?

image courtesy of BerryReporter  Clinton recently wrote an opinion piece entitled, “As RIM Writes Off The Playbook, The Pressure is on Microsoft to Make a Complete Windows 8 Tablet“, in which he says: This morning the Wall Street Journal reported that RIM is taking a $485 million charge for their lackluster tablet, the Playbook.  The charge comes by way of a markdown in the value of the massive inventor that RIM still has of…


Amazon Releases First Kindle Fire Firmware Update

It has been two weeks since the Kindle Fire stormed on to the market, with loads of pre-orders fueling an extremely successful Holiday period for the product. I am still finishing up my review, and Dan has already sent his back … and last night Amazon released the first firmware update for the Fire. Here are the details from Amazon: We have a new, free software update available for Kindle…


Grid Detective for Kindle Review

I am a huge sucker for logic games. When I was a kid, we used to do them all the time in school, and I have very fond memories of drawing my grid, X-ing out the wrong choices, studying the clues, and cracking the puzzle. Last week I was trolling the Kindle bestsellers lists, and stumbled upon Grid Detective; it was free, it was the logic puzzles from my childhood,…


TruConnect Brings Cheap & Easy 3G to Your Kindle Fire or Nook Tablet!

Last month I reviewed the TruConnect ‘pay as you go’ mobile broadband solution, saying: TruConnect absolutely delivers on their claims of a simple device, easy setup and configuration, and clear pricing of as little as $4.99 per month. Beyond that, every person needs to make their own value judgement in terms of the data fees. For light or occasional use, you can get 250MB for less than $15 a month,…


Amazon: It May Be Easy, but It’s a Risk

Now that Amazon is shipping the Kindle Fire, I got to thinking: what if you gift the Fire or any other Kindle?  Well, if you do, make sure you do what Laptopmag.com says in their post and keep YOUR Kindle account safe.  After I read this, I did some more thinking: What if someone stole your shiny new Kindle off of your porch? If this happens, then that thief has access to ALL…


Kindle Fire Shows Android Cross-Market Problem; Nook Tablet Limits Revealed

I wrote about the Android app TouchDown by NitroDesk as an ‘App I Can’t Live Without’, so naturally when I got my Kindle Fire, one of the first things I did was load up TouchDown from the Amazon Appstore for Android to configure my work email account. The problem came when I went to switch from a ‘trial’ to licensed mode. On any other Android device I would simply download…


Author’s Guild Challenges Amazon Prime Lending Library

Uh oh…looks like Amazon’s Lending Library for Prime subscribers has a slight snag-they may not be legally allowed to offer them. The “big six” publishers wanted nothing to do with the program, which isn’t surprising, but Amazon has amassed almost 5,000 titles from smaller houses. Amazon is basically treating each “loan” of a book as a sale of that book, and paying the publishers accordingly. Clearly, Amazon believes this is…