Amazon’s Cloud Reader

Amazon’s Cloud Reader

You don’t need a Kindle to read Kindle books.

There are actually a lot of options available, but in this post,  I want to focus on one in particular: Amazon’s “Cloud Reader”.

You do need an Amazon account, but then you go to:

and sign in.

At that point, the books you’ve purchased on your account are available to you.

Yep, just in a browser…you don’t need to install software or download an app.

I’m looking at mine right now in Maxthon (my browser of choice) on a computer running Windows 10.

I’ve never been impressed with the speed of performance, but it’s certainly serviceable once it syncs.

It will start out on “Cloud”, showing you the books in that account.

You can sort three ways: by Recent (the default), Author, or Title.

Click or tap the book you want to read, and it will download (you can start reading it before it’s complete).

My position was appropriately synced. I just tested it (to see what changes might have happened since the last time I used the app) with

The Martian (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

which I had finished…it opened at the end of the book, as it should.

There chevrons (arrows without the stick: <>) to go forwards or backwards in the book.

Move your mouse to the top of the “page”, and you should see a set of additional icons.

  • Library (this takes you back to the home page)
  • Go to Menu (looks like a book): you can go to the Cover, the Table of Contents, Beginning, Page…, or Location…
  • Aa gives you “display options”: you can choose between five font sizes (not as many as a Kindle, bu quite a few); five margin settings; three color modes (including white text on a black background…that can be easier for people with certain vision issues, and can be easier to read in a darkened setting); one column only (the default is to show you two “pages”, like a book); Show Reading Location (that defaults to on)
  • Toggle bookmark (to add or remove a bookmark to this location)
  • Show Notes and Marks
  • Synchronize
  • A searchbox

At the bottom of the page you’ll see a location slider.

Double click a word, and you’ll get the definition (and you can choose between dictionaries), the ability to add a note, and the ability to highlight.

Going back to the library, there is a setting gear,  but not a lot of choices:

  • Help
  • Terms of Use
  • Legal Notices
  • Privacy
  • Contact Us
  • Sign Out

There is a searchbox here…that’s  for finding items in the library, the other one is for within the book.

You can also choose between cover view and list view (although the list also shows covers), and change the size of the covers.

Finally, there is a link to the Kindle store.

I often send books I buy first to the Cloud Reader, if I don’t want it on any of our devices at that point.

So, simply, this is a good way to read when you want to do that on a computer. It’s not super sophisticated. It’s not the pleasant or convenient reading experience of a Kindle EBR (E-Book Reader) or even a Fire tablet.

Not bad for free, though. 🙂

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) 

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.


3 Responses to “Amazon’s Cloud Reader”

  1. Edward Boyhan Says:

    It’s interesting that you mentioned “The Martian” which I finished reading a few days ago (gave it one my rare 5 star ratings :grin).

    Anyhow the book starts off with a couple of maps, which on my PW2 were just too small to make sense of. So I figured I’d bring up the book in one of the Kindle reader apps on my laptop running Windows 8.1. Under Windows 8.1, there are two kindle reader apps: one for the desktop, and one for the “Metro” environment. I tried both, but the “metro” version was slightly better — so I brought up the larger map on the laptop, and left it there as I read the book on the PW2

    I just tried the web app on “the Martian” map — it’s OK, but the navigation was a little quirky for me. If I were going to read on my laptop, I’d probably use the “universal windows app” (nee metro) version instead of the web app.

    • Bufo Calvin Says:

      Thanks for writing, Edward!

      While I am fond of maps, I just skipped right past them in The Martian. I thought they might be “spoilery”. 🙂

      I have to say, I’m liking what I’m seeing from the movie of The Martian…definitely intrigued to see it.

  2. You can read offline with the Kindle Cloud Reader | I Love My Kindle Says:

    […] Amazon’s Cloud Reader […]

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