Amazon has had a wide selection of free Kindle reading apps on most platforms and devices. The mission of “Buy Once, Read Everywhere” is now further extended to the web browser. Amazon has released Kindle Cloud Reader, based on HTML5, that allows you to read Kindle books instantly in your browser online or offline – with no downloading or installation required.
Kindle Cloud Reader automatically synchronizes your Kindle library, as well as your last page read, bookmarks, notes, and highlights for all of your Kindle books. This feature is similar to the one available in all reading apps and allows you to continue reading a book from the page that you last left on whether on a Kindle device or on one of the Kindle apps. Your current book is automatically made available for offline use, and you can choose to save a book for reading offline at any time.
Kindle Cloud Reader provides an immersive view of your entire Kindle library, with instant access to all of your books. An embedded Kindle Store optimized for the browser makes it seamless to discover new books and start reading them instantly. The iPad version includes an integrated, touch-optimized store that allows you one-click access to the vast selection of books.
The first time you sign in to your Amazon.com account, you are given an option to enable offline reading capability which allows the books in your library to be downloaded for offline reading.
Once you choose a book to read from the library, you can customize the page layout to your desired font size, text color, background color, and more. The interface is neat and has subtle navigational aids at the bottom and previous/next options on either sides.
The only grouse that I have is that Kindle Cloud Reader is not yet available for Internet Explorer 9. I could not even test a limited or hampered experience since the application doesn’t allow you to sign in on an unsupported browser. Kindle Cloud Reader is available for Safari (Windows/Mac/iPad) and Chrome (Mac/Windows/Linux/Chromebook). Amazon’s press release indicates that Kindle Cloud Reader will be available on additional web browsers, the BlackBerry PlayBook browser, and other mobile browsers, in the coming months.
Amazon.com customers can start reading their Kindle books, or discover new titles from over 950,000 Kindle books available, immediately using Kindle Cloud Reader at www.amazon.com/cloudreader using the existing credentials.