Flash! New message for personal documents sent via wi-fi
This was an interesting one, and I did end up calling Kindle Customer Service to try to get more information.
I pretty frequently send personal documents for free conversion to Amazon. It’s commonly work things, and often ones that I want to review in the car using text-to-speech.
I have a Kindle 3, now, and I knew it could be delivered for free to my Kindle via wi-fi. Via-3G, it’s fifteen cents a megabyte rounded up (for US Kindleers in the US).
I wasn’t quite sure how that would work. How would it choose whether to download it via wi-fi (for free) or via 3G (and charge me)?
Well, that part of the question is easy…to send it to your Kindle via wi-fi, you just send it to your free address (see this earlier post). Now, not only do you get a link sent back to your personal e-mail address, it also will send them to your Kindle when you are connected to wi-fi.
Yes, it does it both ways. That’s going to be a bit of a bother, because you don’t really need the e-mail if it was already sent via wi-fi…although it’s nice to have the link handy. I’ve gone back to those before…converted files do not have the DRM (Digital Rights Management) that restricts them to a single device, so it’s a way to download a copy to your computer you can send to other people.
Here was the strange thing, though.
When I did the conversion initially, I wasn’t connected via wi-fi, and I did what I had always done…transferred the document to my Kindle’s Documents folder using my USB.
A message showed up later on my homescreen for each of the documents I sent. This is it:
Here was the problem.
I did connect to wi-fi…and those messages wouldn’t go away.
I tried Menu-Sync & Check…nope.
I tried a Menu-Settings-Menu-Restart…nope.
I checked clicking left…yes, I got the choice to delete.
My guess was that the message was only there because I had already transferred the documents via USB when I wasn’t connected to wi-fi. It’s logical that it doesn’t want to redeliver the documents via wi-fi in that situation…you don’t want to overwrite the user’s “associated information” file. That would be the mbp in this case, and you would wipe out any notes they had made.
I called Kindle Customer Service (well, I had them call me through http://www.amazon.com/manageyourkindle ). They confirmed that it was fine to delete the messages.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m very happy to be able to get personal documents for free on my Kindle via wi-fi. That’s a nice change. It would be nice if the system was a bit smarter, though, and didn’t leave those messages if the file was already on the device.
In the future, I’ll try to do the conversions when I’m connected to wi-fi…or wait to pick them up until I am, rather than using the USB. That wouldn’t have worked well in this case, though…I wanted them for my trip for text-to-speech. I figure I’ll be deleting a few of those messages in the future.
Bottom line: if you already have the file, you can delete that message. I suspect that, if you deleted it and you didn’t have the file yet, it wouldn’t make any difference…you’d still get it when you connected to wi-fi.
Just thought you might want to know.
UPDATE: I needed to put some information about where I was going today on my Kindle. I normally would have put it in a text file, connected the Kindle to my computer, and saved the file to the Kindle’s Documents folder (Kindle can read text files with no conversion).
Instead, since I was connected to wi-fi, I just sent it to my free.kindle.com address. It took about thirty seconds, and it showed up without me doing a Sync & Check. That’s actually nice functionality. It meant I didn’t need to use my cable. Disadvantage? It means I’ll have to think about recharging my Kindle more than I think about it now. I have been connecting my Kindle to my computer fairly often to transfer personal files…and that’s when it gets charged. I’ll still connect it to back up my files, but I don’t do that as often.
This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog.