Amazon turns iPhone into a Kindle

Amazon is extending the reach of its eBooks with a new Kindle application for the iPhone and iPod touch.

Amazon turns iPhone into a Kindle

The software allows iPhone owners to buy and read books on their phone, just as they would on Amazon’s dedicated Kindle device.

It’s the first time Amazon has offered Kindle services on third-party hardware.

The iPhone app boasts one very clever trick called Whispersync, which allows readers to switch between Kindle and iPhone without losing their place in the book. The software detects that you put the book down at, say, page 143 on the Kindle and asks if you want to resume from that spot when you fire up the Kindle app on the iPhone.

Kindle for iPhone is a free download from the Apple App Store, although it doesn’t appear to be available outside of the US.

The Kindle itself is currently US only, largely because its cellular data connection is incompatible with the European system. Whether the iPhone app will prompt Amazon to start selling eBooks in the UK awaits to be seen.

The iPhone already boasts rival eBook apps, such as the Fictionwise eReader, but the support of Amazon could help turn the Apple device into a serious alternative to a dedicated eBook reader.

Amazon recently unveiled the second-generation Kindle, which is notably slimmer than its predecessor.

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