Amazon Kindle Cloud Reader is now available. While it’s clear that PlayBook support was not a first priority, with a couple of tweaks the PlayBook is supported. It’s not perfect, but it’s a fair bit better than the love Amazon has shown for PlayBook to date (that is to say – none at all).
To get started visit the link below from your PlayBook and sign in with your Amazon credentials:
Some issues and the workaround for them:
- When you first run, you must view in Portrait mode or else you won’t be able to get off of the initial screen that instructs you to increase storage size when prompted.
- The default cover view does not seems to scroll properly on the PlayBook. If you tap the list view icon, it works correctly; and scrolling in list view also works correctly.
- The web app does successfully detect your offline/online state for viewing “cloud” books.
- If you are viewing a book and lose connection/disconnect, you can continue reading without any problems. But if you launch the browser with no connection it does not appears to work b/c the browser reports a connection error before checking to see if the content is available offline.
- In my brief testing so far, “Download and Pin” (appears when you tap-hold on a book) seems to work well – but again with the caveat from above. You must load the initial reader page prior to losing your connection/disconnecting. Once a book is downloaded for offline viewing, the “Downloaded” tab shows it and allows you to view it even if you have no connection.
- Best viewed in fullscreen mode.
I’ll see if I can’t whip up a “Kindle App” for the weekend, which will give us a launcher separate from the web browser and true full-screen. (If somebody else doesn’t beat me to it – I’m limited to my laptop for the next couple of days as I’m attending the BBM Hackathon, and don’t have the full PB dev environment set up.) Hopefully I can find a way to force an “offline” mode as well, so that you can launch it with no connection at all.
Some first impressions:
- Landscape mode is usable after the first screen, but I have found that text in landscape mode is oddly blurry at any font size, even though the interface resizes well.
- Font and color options are standard Kindle fare, it’s good to see that they’re all present.
- Annotations can be read but not added as far as I can tell.
While I can’t help but wish it was a little better integrated with the PlayBook’s features, this effectively fills a gap many of us have been waiting for since the PlayBook launch.