Round up #172: Z-Pass, International Fire & Appstore

Round up #172: Z-Pass, International Fire & Appstore

The ILMK Round ups are short pieces which may or may not be expanded later.

There’s some good stuff this time…let’s get started!

Wait a minute…I guess I do want to set the world on Fire

Amazon sent me two press releases today, and these are big news (especially for my readers around the world)!

Kindle Fire HD and Kindle Fire HD 8.9” Now Available for Pre-Order for Customers in over 170 Countries Around the World, Shipping June 13

Amazon Appstore for Android Now Open in Nearly 200 Countries Worldwide

First, it means that the

Kindle Fire HD 7″, Dolby Audio, Dual-Band Wi-Fi, 16 GB
Kindle Fire HD 8.9″, Dolby Audio, Dual-Band Wi-Fi, 16 GB

are available for order in many places around the world (but not all…while Amazon would undoubtedly like to sell everywhere in the world, and beyond if possible, it’s difficult to make the necessary arrangements in some countries, notably the Middle East).

It does not appear to include the 4G model,or the standard definition Kindle  Fire 2nd Generation.

Oh, but you can get the 32 GB versions.

It doesn’t look to me like you’ll be able to do Amazon Instant Video on them…and I’m curious about, say, Netflix.

You can do e-books, music, audiobooks, magazines…and apps.

That last one is the other announcement, and will be welcome to many people.  The Amazon Appstore is opening in even more countries than the Fire will be available. Does that make sense? Sure, the Appstore is limited to just the Fire as a market. Even where Amazon can’t sell their hardware, they can sell apps for Android SmartPhones (for example).

To celebrate this, the Free App of the Day is the very popular

Fruit Ninja

Some of you may remember Jeff Bezos demonstrating the CEO’s own limited Fruit Ninja skills at the Kindle Fire intro event.

As always, check the price before you get the app…


Oh, and please let me know your experience with the Amazon Appstore if you are outside the USA and notice any significant restrictions…or advantages.

Lud-in-the Mist: a fantasy classic as a KDD

“Ranulph had always been a dreamy, rather delicate child, and backward for his years. Up to the age of seven, or thereabouts, he had caused his mother much annoyance by his habit, when playing in the garden, of shouting out remarks to an imaginary companion. And he was fond of talking nonsense (according to the ideas of Lud-in-the-Mist, slightly obscene nonsense) about golden cups, and snow-white ladies milking azure cows, and the sound of tinkling bridles at midnight. But children are apt, all the world over, to have nasty little minds; and this type of talk was not uncommon among the children of Lud-in-the-Mist, and, as they nearly always grew out of it, little attention was paid to it.”
–Hope Mirrless
writing in Lud-in-the-Mist
collected in Bufo’s The Mind Boggles: A Unique Book of Quotations
decade: 1920s

One of today’s Kindle Daily Deals (KDDs) is


by Helen Mirrlees, originally published in 1926 (and, I believe, not in the public domain).

Neil Gaiman and many others have praised it, and I recommend it to you (you can see above, I included it in my book of quotations). The price today is only ninety-nine cents…the digital list price is $12.95.

Borders hoarder? So sorry…

Have you been holding on to a Borders gift card, figuring you would get the value for it in the bankruptcy pay-outs?

Well, you and close to 18 million people with close to a quarter of a billion dollars worth of gift cards should get nothing for them, according to U.S. District Judge Andrew Carter, as reported in this

NPR article

Other debtors will get money, but not consumers.

This District Court is the last stop before you get to the Supreme Court, which may not happen in this case (this judge was upholding a lower court ruling).

It kind of makes you wonder if Judge Denise Cote, who has been great on so many consumer issues that involve e-books, could rule on everything. 😉

Zinio Z-pass: three magazines for $5 a month

As regular readers know, I prefer Zinio’s arrangement on subscriptions to Amazon’s Kindle Newsstand. One of the key things is that they store as many issues as you’ve had for you…unlike Amazon, which does a “rolling seven” (they store the current edition, and six previous ones: you can save them yourself, but just on the current device. Those saved issues aren’t backed up for you by Amazon).

The Zinio app is not in the Amazon Appstore, but you can “sideload” it entirely within the rules at Amazon…the information is here:

They have a new deal, called “Z-Pass”. You can get a free trial for it right now (and you can read Zinio mags on other devices like PCs, for those of you without a Fire).

The basic idea is that you pay $5 a month, and you get three magazines, which  you pick out of a list of over 200 eligible titles (and these are big names).

You can add additional magazines…could be $1.50 a month, might be more if they are “premium titles”.

You can swap up to three a month…I think what this means is that you can change which one you will get the following month, not that it is an “all-you-can-eat program”.  Definitely sounds like you aren’t committed to the magazine for a year…so if yo were going to buy a car, for example,  you might get car magazines that month, and travel magazines before you go on vacation.

I’m going to check with my Significant Other, but I do think we may do this.

One more thing to note: the magazine doesn’t appear in your newsstand on your Fire…you get to it through the Zinio app. Even though you sideload it, it does appear on your apps tab and can be added to your Favorites.

Here are the

Z-Pass FAQs

and here is the main

Z-Pass website

where you can see the magazine options.

What do you think? Should consumers have gotten money for their Borders gift cards? Will you use the Amazon Appstore outside of the USA? Do you have Zinio experiences to share? Feel free to let me and my readers know by commenting on this post.

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog.


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