Russ Grandinetti is the guy at Amazon when it comes to getting all kinds of books, magazines, newspapers, and blogs into the Kindle Store. Officially, he’s Amazon’s vice president for Kindle content, and he had some important things to say — not only for readers but for authors and bloggers as well — when he appeared on Len Edgerly’s The Kindle Chronicles podcast the other day. Let’s focus on blogs in this post, and we’ll get into Grandinetti’s positive reinforcement for authors in a later post.
Asked by Edgerly why Kindle edition bogs don’t show up on other Kindle apps like the iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, BlackBerry, PC, Android, and Mac, Grandinetti made it clear that it is more a question of when than of why:
“It’s a feature we’re working on, so stay tuned…. It’s something we’re very interested in delivering over time.”
That’s bound to make Kindle edition blogs more appealing to readers, but it is important for blog publishers as well. It confirms, from a loftier perspective, what I have reported here in the past based on conversations with Kindle Support. As of this morning there are 9,398 active blogs in the Kindle store, and some of the most active, like Kindle Nation Daily, have well over 5,000 Kindle edition subscribers. If Amazon improves the interoperability of the Kindle platform so that Kindle editions of blogs, magazines, and newspapers are served to Kindle subscribers on any Kindle-compatible device in any country, the sky’s the limit for many reader-friendly bloggers to get the kind of support that could actually allow them to make a living at what they do and, in the bargain, do it better.
Although I was initially skeptical about the potential for Kindle edition blogs, I’ve learned from the support for my own efforts here that the convenience of being able to check on a blog right from your Kindle home screen drives subscriptions, and the same is likely to be true with respect to the convenience of being able to catch up on a handful of one’s favorite Kindle blog subscriptions if they are served directly to the home screens of Kindle apps on millions of Kindle-compatible mobile devices including the iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, BlackBerry, and Android.
“Operationally, such an offering could be based on opening up those apps to include periodicals directly without any circuitous transfer procedures,” I wrote in a post on this subject back on April 14. “Currently Kindle content customers can read Kindle books on their Kindle-for-X device apps, but booting up the Kindle app on the iPad, the iPhone, the iPod Touch, the PC, the Mac and the BlackBerry provides no access to their Kindle newspaper, magazine, and blog subscriptions. I receive multiple emails each day from my blog subscribers looking for Kindle-for-X device app access to their Kindle subscriptions Kindle Nation Daily or iPad Nation Daily, and it would not surprise me if Amazon was working both on serving blogs to their Kindle-for-X device apps and on making them accessible beyond U.S. borders.”
If you are a current or prospective blog author or publisher and you are interested in bringing a blog “to market” through the Kindle Store, you might be shocked at how straightforward the process is using my guide: 21 Steps: How to Publish a Kindle Blog (And Why You Might Want To). It takes about 15 minutes of actual work — in addition to the long hours of slaving away at your blog, of course — and it doesn’t cost a thing.