Amazon expands Kindle ebook access to browser

Tools expanded its Kindle for the Web service to enable consumers to purchase and read complete Kindle ebook titles via any web browser--no download or installation required. The move comes just hours after the launch of Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) eBooks, a multi-platform effort that challenges the existing digital bookseller model by offering an open, "read anywhere" model giving consumers the flexibility to purchase titles directly from Google or its online retail partners (including independent bookstores) and add them to an online library connected to a Google account. Amazon will now enable bookstores, authors, bloggers and even rival retailers to offer Kindle books from their own sites, with readers now able to instantly access the full text of the title across any web-enabled device.

Amazon's Kindle Store offers millions of titles, including 101 of 111 current New York Times Bestsellers and New Releases starting at $9.99 as well as a multitude of older, out-of-copyright, pre-1923 books. Kindle's Buy Once, Read Everywhere ereader applications (including apps for mobile platforms including iOS, Android, BlackBerry and Windows Phone 7) enable consumers to sync and read books, last page read, bookmarks, notes and highlights across devices. Amazon first introduced Kindle in 2007--the ereader device is now its bestselling, most gifted and most wished for product.

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