French Kindle & French Kindle Store

The new Kindle 4 is now available in France and in the French language – a French Kindle Store has been opened and the French Kindle is available for 99 Euros.

You can visit French Kindle Store to get the French Kindle.

Here are some of the interesting details from the Press Release –

  1. Releases on October 14th.
  2. There will be 35,000 French language books and 4,000 free classics in French.
  3. There will also be English titles – 825,000 of them.
  4. The price for Kindle 4 in France is 99 Euros.
  5. French newspapers and magazines include – Le Monde, Les Echos, Le Figaro, Libération and Aujourd’hui en France/Le Parisien.
  6.  Independent authors and Publishers can use Kindle Direct Publishing to publish to the French Kindle Store.

It’s certainly interesting news. It’s the second country specific Kindle Store after the UK Kindle Store.

Kindle Library Lending now live (11,000 libraries have Kindle Library Lending)

Kindle Library Lending is now live and available at 11,000 libraries in the US.

Amazon’s Kindle Library Lending Page.

They have some basic instructions which can be summarized as –

  1. Visit the website of a US Library that offers OverDrive digital ebook loans.
  2. Check out a Kindle book (they mean an ebook). You must have a valid library card.
  3. Then you will get a page that has a button that says ‘Get for Kindle’. Press that button and you will have to sign-in to your Amazon account and will then be able to have the book you just got on loan from the library sent to your Kindle or to your Kindle Reading App.
  4. The books are transferred wirelessly only over WiFi. If you don’t have WiFi access you have to do a download to your PC and transfer via USB cable.

Do you have more Questions about Kindle Library Lending?

Amazon has a Help section for Kindle Library Lending now live.

There are some interesting details on Kindle Library Lending including –

  1. You can view status of public library books from the Manage Your Kindle page.
  2. Wireless delivery is only via WiFi.
  3. Library Books can be sent to any Kindle or to any Kindle reading app. It’s not clear whether they can be read on multiple devices in parallel.
  4. Three days before a book loan ends you will be notified via email.
  5. Length of the ebook loan will vary by library. As will the range of ebooks available.

It’s understandable that Amazon wouldn’t subsidize 3G wireless for a free library book. That would just kill it in terms of bandwidth costs – especially given that it’s making zero money from a free library book and thus has nothing it can use to subsidize bandwidth costs.

What if your local library doesn’t support OverDrive?

Update: Library of Philadelphia (for $40) and Library of Fulton County, GA (for $35) allows non-residents to get membership. Thanks to Brian and Caroline for the information.

Well, there are some libraries such as (supposedly) the Library of Pittsburgh that allow membership even for non-residents of the city/state. For around $40 you can get a year’s membership. Please leave a comment if you know of any other libraries that allow this. To the best of my knowledge Seattle Library allows membership for anyone living close to Seattle.

It’s a huge feature addition. Library book support on the Kindle is more meaningful to most users than ePub support or touch or animated page turns. It’ll be interesting to see what effect it has on the race to zero that ebook prices are currently seeing. Kindle Library Lending might be the straw that breaks the ‘Publishing as a Viable Industry’ Camel’s back.

Kindle in Germany – German Kindle arrives with 25,000 German books

Amazon launched a German Kindle Store today and started selling Kindle in Germany straight from

There’s a Press Release on the German Kindle available. This post has the key interesting details.

Kindle in Germany – Details on the German Kindle

  1. will start selling Kindles directly. Kindle 3 and Kindle WiFi will be sold.
  2. The user interface for the Kindles will still be in English. Makes you wonder if it’s a bit of a rushed release.
  3. There is a German Kindle Store with 650,000 titles (English books, German books, and books in other languages).
  4. There are 25,000 German language books, including 71 out of 100 Spiegel bestsellers. Authors include Arno Geiger, Kerstin Gier, and Charlotte Link.
  5. There are also some German newspapers and magazines available, including Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Handelsblatt, and Die Zeit.
  6. There are thousands of German classics available for free in the German Kindle Store. 
  7. Kindle Reading Apps are now available in German – including Kindle for iPad, Kindle for iPhone, Kindle for PC, Kindle for Mac, and Kindle for Android. 
  8. Kindle Direct Publishing Service (self-publishing for authors) is available worldwide – authors can now sell their titles to Kindle owners in Germany via the German Kindle Store. The 70% royalty option is available with the usual restrictions (the book must be priced between $2.99 and $9.99, etc.).
  9. WhisperSync is available with all the usual features.
  10. Kindle WiFi is 139 Euros and Kindle 3G is 189 Euros. They are available with free 2-day shipping at

Amazon is certainly making a lot of announcements right before its upcoming earnings release (April 26th, 2011). Perhaps it is buffering against something in the earnings release it thinks Wall Street will hate (such as a lot of investment in the Kindle).

Kindle in Germany – What does it mean?

  1. Amazon is finally moving beyond US and UK. It’s showing a surprising amount of interest in Europe by picking Germany as the third country to expand to.
  2. It probably means Amazon is going to keep setting up country-specific stores. Perhaps, eventually, Amazon will end up selling Kindles through Amazon Japan, through its Chinese partner/subsidiary, and through its other subsidiaries (Amazon Italy, Amazon France, Amazon Transylvania).
  3. The choice of Germany is a bit puzzling – Firstly, there are very strict book pricing laws in Germany. Secondly, it’s only got 25,000 German language ebooks.
  4. This move suggests Amazon is serious about selling books in other languages. At the minimum, it’ll take a shot and see how things go.
  5. It’s strange that Amazon would launch with only 25,000 German language books. Wonder what percentage of German book titles that figure represents.

It’s certainly an interesting move in terms of country and timing – releasing a German Kindle before releasing the Kindle in China, Japan, or an English-speaking country like Australia is puzzling. After the April 26 Amazon Earnings Release we might have a better idea why Amazon moved ahead with Kindle Germany and a mere 25,000 German Kindle books.