Stupid question about Kindles

Eh, I have to disagree. I’ve owned and loved Kindles since the first generation and they work just fine with complex formatting as long as publishers release in its native format. Not everyone is a mass-market novel reader, and the Kindle is certainly capable of more. I read a lot of non-fiction on it and it handles pictures, tables of content, real page numbers, normal rich text formatting, etc. with no problem, all while keeping reflow and sync. It just has to be tailored to the Kindle format.

I also get books on PDF and I spend hours removing the DRM, cropping the margins with Briss, OCRing the text to recognize and/or reflow it, manually adding section headers and a TOC, etc. just to make it all readable in the Kindle, and afterward it IS – meaning the Kindle was capable the whole time. If more non-fiction publishers released in that format to begin with it’d save a lot of time and effort.

The point is that it’s a publisher’s choice problem, not a Kindle problem. I emailed one recently about this and their answer was basically “We didn’t want to pay Amazon’s commission”.

FWIW I also have an Android tablet and I cross-read Kindle titles on the ereader and the tablet sometimes. Some books don’t just have to be available as a PDF, and when publishers go through the extra effort to make titles Kindle-native, the experience is phenomenally better on all devices, eInk or otherwise, and readability improves as well.

Amazon used to have a rather obnoxious $2 delivery fee if you bought kindle books outside of North America. It was supposed to pay for the roaming on the 3g network, but they charged it even if you had a wifi-only kindle. They dropped it a few years ago though.

Prices do vary in the various country-specific kindle stores, but since there isn’t a kindle store in the country where the OP is, I believe the prices should be the same.

How is that not a Kindle problem? If Amazon would allow the Kindle to read epubs, it would be very easy for small publishers to put out properly-formatted books. The only purpose their proprietary format serves is to let Amazon get its beak wet in sales they normally wouldn’t get a cut of.

Quite a few although not all of the pdfs I’ve gotten were kindle-readable simply by changing the orientation of the screen from “portrait” to “landscape”. Zooms them up to a perfecly fine size.

Small publishers can also release in the Amazon format and not sell on the store if they really wanted to.

ePub would be nice, for sure, but it’s hardly a barrier to proper Kindle formatting. It takes a few minutes (hours at most) with an InDesign plugin, Calibre, KindleGen or a similar program to produce Kindle-formatted output.

If they don’t want to pay the commission they don’t have to sell on the Amazon store but can still make the format available. Hell, even Project Gutenburg does it for all its books.

You’re right. Which means that if they want to charge the kindle in the US without bringing a laptop they’ll need to purchase a US adapter, and if they want to charge it in Norway/most of Europe without beinging a laptop they’ll need a second adapter. Purchasing both from rings in at 35USD.

You could charge them with a cheap and cheerful USB hub as I do with my phone since I lost the charger.

I have a Kobo reader, which works fine in Canada (although they do charge sales tax of 15% in Quebec). I once looked at the Barnes & Noble e-reader, but B&N were not licensed to sell in Canada. Anyway, why don’t you ask Amazon.

I have reformatted my own pdfs for my reader. If you can get the author to do the same, there will be no problem.

It won’t be a problem at all. I live in the UK and bought two Kindles when I was last there and they work fine here, no changes needed. Charging is not a problem - they’re fine with UK voltage and charge with any android-style mini-usb charger. Converting non-Kindle files to mobi format is extremely easy with free software on your computer.

And Amazon UK replaced a broken Kindle as if it were bought here, even though the fault was caused by us and I’d bought a version with ads that was only sold in the US (they replaced it with an ad-free one).

The problem I found with a Kindle and PDF was that the pages were typically sized for a book - I could zoom, but the version I had (keyboard, before touch was out) your zoom option was restricted - I think like 150%, 200%, etc. regular size of a 7x10inch book was too small to read, zooming meant you had to scroll back and forth, and re-zoom each time you went to a new page.

Running a book through Calibre worked great.

I typically now use the iPad Kindle app. You can put a book (PDF or MOBI) in an app like DropBox, then when you open the file on the iPad, there’s an option to select the app to open it with - Kindle reader. Or, you can email a book to your Amazon Kindle account and it is available for download and progress track on all devices, including Kindle device.

IIRC, places like BAen Books would make free books available for download each month as a promotion. you don’t need to get everything through Amazon store. I bought an American device and used it interchangeably in Canada and it worked fine. The local Amazon stores may not sell some items due to copyright / license issues, but generally I have not heard of the same limitations as iTunes and international limits on music.

There’s an excellent program called calibre which works wonders for fixing pdfs and other formats into azns and mobis for the kindle