Round up #214: Amazon will pay you to get these apps, Gaiman gets it
The ILMK Round ups are short pieces which may or may not be expanded later.
AmazonLocal deals: e-books, tablets, and Audible subscriptions
AmazonLocal is Amazon’s deal service. You create an account for free, and then they offer limited-time deals. You typically say you want the deal, and then are given a certain amount of time to use it.
Some of the deals are a case of buying something for a discount: pay $15, get $30 worth, that kind of thing.
Others are free vouchers that allow you to buy something at a special price.
There are three of the latter right now that might be particularly interesting to readers of this blog.
You can see the books on the
This is an impressive set! The thing that ties together is almost all of them have at least 50 ratings, and a 4+ (out of 5 star) average: that’s good. Authors include Louis L’Amour and Ed McBain.
Another deal is
Not every Kindle can do audiobooks, because not every Kindle has sound (the Paperwhite and the “Mindle”, the lowest priced Kindle, don’t). You also don’t need to have a membership to buy books from Audible: that’s a common misconception. However, as they say, membership has its privileges, and there are many happy Audible (owned by Amazon) members.
The third one I’ve written about previously, and it looks like some of my readers have taken advantage of it, based on comments. There are fewer than three days left to get a 20% off voucher for refurbished Kindle Fires.
My readers have said (and I agree), that refurbs are a great way to go. You get the same warranty you would on a new one, and honestly, I think the quality control is probably better because they’ve been inspected carefully and individually. If you buy a new one, I think you have a better chance of getting a “lemon”. However, I recognize that a lot of people want new ones (that’s what I buy), but there’s nothing wrong with saving some money (even more with the coupons) if you are comfortable with an equal or better quality refurb.
Amazon will pay you to get these apps
Not only does Amazon give away a lot of things, they sometimes give you a benefit when you buy something.
A common thing used to be that you might get an MP3 credit when you bought certain apps.
Well, today only, from your Fire (go to Apps, then Store, and watch the banner change for the ad), you can six popular apps for free…and with each one, you get 20 Amazon coins.
The Amazon Coins can be used to buy more apps or some in-app purchases.
A coin is worth a penny, basically, but still…that’s up to $1.20 for free, plus the apps.
The apps are:
- The Room: 4.8 stars out of 5, with 2,567 (!) customer ratings…I wonder if people are more likely to rate apps, and why? Age appeal, perhaps?
- Angry Bird Star Wars Premium: 4.2 stars, 1,851
- Diner Dash Deluxe: 4.0 stars, 210 reviews (the non-deluxe version has thousands of reviews)
- Toca Builders: 4.4 stars, 31 reviews
- Fishdom Premium: 4.6 stars, 189 reviews
- Splashtop Whiteboard: 3.8 stars, 4 reviews (normally $9.99)
I’ve used a Splashtop app before, and I’ll try this one out (I went ahead and got all of the apps which we didn’t already have. We only had Angry Birds Star Wars…which interestingly meant we couldn’t get the coins for that one). This will give you a whiteboard to use with a computer. You’ll use your Kindle Fire as the interface, and what you do that will appear on the computer over wi-fi.
Speaking of apps, I haven’t mentioned this.
which is a popular enough app to get in the zeitgeist and become the topic of jokes, has come to the Kindle Fire.
It’s free, and rated 4.7 stars with 3,130 reviews.
My Significant Other has tried it. The weird thing is that you’ll get to the point where you want to play another game, and your choice is either to pay with real money, or wait fifteen minutes…something like that. I think that’s pretty clever!
Gaiman gets it
I thought this was a great
It explains the value of fiction in a way that is both relatable and reliable.
It also makes the excellent point that one of the most important things is that children enjoy reading, so trying to control what they read may be counterproductive. If you read a “good” book, but hate reading it, that doesn’t really help encourage you to read other things.
I’m going to highly recommend the article, and I do want to mention one thing I learned from it:
“I was in China in 2007, at the first party-approved science fiction and fantasy convention in Chinese history. SF had been disapproved of for a long time. At one point I took a top official aside and asked him what had changed? “It’s simple,” he told me. “The Chinese were brilliant at making things if other people brought them the plans. But they did not innovate and they did not invent. They did not imagine. So they sent a delegation to the US, to Apple, to Microsoft, to Google, and they asked the people there who were inventing the future about themselves. And they found that all of them had read science fiction when they were boys or girls.”
So, pragmatically, the Chinese may have decided that their population should read science fiction.
Here’s a question, though, since I always like to look at both sides: science fiction readers may certainly be more imaginative, but are they more productive? Something to consider…some certainly are, but that’s an argument you would get from people who are anti-imagination. “Sure, they may be brilliant, but they don’t put their brilliance to work to help society.”
Amazon did not raise the price for Super Saving Shipping
I reported recently on Amazon raising the minimum for Super Saving Shipping from $25 to $35…but I am seeing a lot of people reacting to that as though the price has been raised.
Free is free…you are paying the same amount for Super Saving Shipping, which is nothing.
The difference is that you have to have an order with a higher minimum value before you get that free shipping.
Hypothetically, that could just mean waiting longer in-between.
There is a sense, here, that we spend money and don’t get something for it if we add things to the purchase. I would hope that isn’t so: that you don’t just add something to the cart and then toss it in the garbage when you gets to your house.
I’ve also seen some hostility expressed about the Amazon Add-on program, where you can buy some items only as part of a minimum $25 order (or maybe, only at what many people see as a reasonable price after you reach that level).
I wanted to poll you about some special programs of Amazon’s:
What do you think? Are science fiction readers “good members of society”, or does society just benefit from their creativeness sometimes? Should adults guide children to “good books”, or let them read what they want? Are you addicted to Candy Crush? If you are an Audible subscriber, what benefits do you think make it worth it? Feel free to tell me and my readers what you think by commenting on this post.
This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them