Fast Company

Books On TV? Kindle Hits the Web, Set-Top Box

Kindle for the Web

Amazon's plan to succeed in the digital books game is becoming clearer and clearer--it will maximize its income by pushing Kindle content onto every possible platform. Now its new Web portal means you can even read 'em on your TV.

Moments after the BlackBerry PlayBook was revealed, Amazon announced it was going to launch a Kindle app for the new RIM product. It wasn't unusual for Amazon to take this step, given that the BlackBerry is such a prominent device and the PlayBook may see some of its own success, but the speed of the announcement was surprising.

Now it seems Amazon was clearing the decks for its announcement today: A Web portal for Kindle content. It's far more than a Web adaption of the existing Mac and PC apps. You can preview books more easily, then buy them from the same interface--and even embed clips from texts into your website (which lets you earn referral payments if your site's visitors then buy the text). There's one drawback of the Beta version: You can't read whole texts here yet. You have to use a full Kindle app on an e-reader, smartphone, Mac, or PC.

Nevertheless, Kindle for the Web may be the most potent tweak to the Amazon ecosystem yet. In one swoop, it brings e-book reading (backed by Amazon's own archive of texts) to any pretty much every screen that sports Web access. That means set-top boxes, games consoles, and every other device that connects to the Web using a browser. Amazon intends to get on your TV--and whatever device you use as your main screen in the future, Kindle has you covered.

To keep up with this news, follow me, Kit Eaton, on Twitter.

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