Feeds
70%
Amazon Kindle 2

Amazon Kindle International Edition

Lost in translation?

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Build a business case: developing custom apps

To help us test the Kindle, Amazon kindly bunged Register Hardware $30 of credit which we promptly spent on the e-book of the complete Lord of the Rings, the download taking only a matter of moments over a 3G connection before magically appearing in our library.

Amazon Kindle 2

Better value than paper books?

The purchase set us back $20.29 (£12.50) which is exactly the same amount Waterstones wants for the paperback, though the RRP in £19.99. Waterstones is selling the ePub e-book for £14.71 in the UK. Anthony Beevor's Stalingrad can be picked up for $9.37 (£5.80) on the Kindle which is a bargain, while Robert Fisk's Age of the Warrior will set you back $13.79 (£8.50) - otherwise a £9.99 physical purchase in your local WH Smiths.

Since Amazon expects most Kindle users to buy content from, well, Amazon, the Kindle's primary e-book format is Amazon's own AZW, though it can also handle DRM-free Mobipocket files. If you ask us, an e-book reader that doesn't support ePub is a bit of a three-legged nag. Despite what Amazon may think, ePub is now the e-book standard with even Sony - never a company to relish the adoption of technologies it didn't invent - recently converting its entire DRM e-book library to the format.

The real advantage of any e-book reader is that you can head over the likes of Feedbooks and grab the entire output of Jane Austen, HG Wells, Dickens and Tolstoy, and not pay a penny. Thankfully, Feedbooks offers its content in Mobipocket format as well as ePub and PDF.

Speaking of PDF, after having run an over-the-air firmware update, our sample Kindle acquired the ability to show PDF files. However, the PDF update was only partially worthwhile. Yes, PDF files now show up in the device's library, but there's no zoom function so we're stuck with the basic full-page view. You can increase the text size by swapping the view from portrait to landscape but that really is no substitute for the ability to zoom and reflow.

Amazon Kindle 2

Not the best e-book reader for viewing PDF documents

Incidentally, when browsing Tolkien's epic we came across another problem: the maps could only be magnified to full page size which left them largely illegible.

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
So, Apple won't sell cheap kit? Prepare the iOS garden wall WRECKING BALL
It can throw the low cost race if it looks to the cloud
End of buttons? Apple looks to patent animating iPhone sidewalls
Filing suggests handset with display strips
One step closer to ROBOT BUTLERS: Dyson flashes vid of VACUUM SUCKER bot
Latest cleaner available for world+dog in September
Samsung Gear S: Quick, LAUNCH IT – before Apple straps on iWatch
Full specs for wrist-mounted device here ... but who'll buy it?
Apple promises to lift Curse of the Drained iPhone 5 Battery
Have you tried turning it off and...? Never mind, here's a replacement
Now that's FIRE WIRE: HP recalls 6 MILLION burn-risk laptop cables
Right in the middle of Burning Mains Man week
Apple's iWatch? They cannae do it ... they don't have the POWER
Analyst predicts fanbois will have to wait until next year
Reg man looks through a Glass, darkly: Google's toy ploy or killer tech specs?
Tip: Put the shades on and you'll look less of a spanner
HUGE iPAD? Maybe. HUGE ADVERTS? That's for SURE
Noo! Hand not big enough! Don't look at meee!
prev story

Whitepapers

Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Backing up distributed data
Eliminating the redundant use of bandwidth and storage capacity and application consolidation in the modern data center.
The essential guide to IT transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIOs automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.