Amazon Instant Video goes offline, leapfrogs Netflix

Offline playback is a really cool feature. I hope Netflix adds this soon.

Business Culture

Step Aside Black Friday – Meet Amazon’s Prime Day

> Next week, Amazon turns 20 and on the eve of its birthday, the company introduces Prime Day, a global shopping event, offering more deals than Black Friday, exclusively for Prime members in the U.S., U.K., Spain, Japan, Italy, Germany, France, Canada and Austria.

Sounds intense.

Culture Entertainment

Amazon Updates the Kindle Paperwhite

Amazon has updated their [Kindle Paperwhite]( model (the model I have currently) with a higher resolution screen and Amazon’s new “Bookerly” font. As someone who reads on his Kindle almost nightly, I find this to be a really interesting upgrade.[^f1535].

[^f1535]: The links to the Kindle itself are affiliate links.


The New Kindle Voyage

Today, Amazon released the new [Kindle Voyage]([^aff], an upgrade over the existing [Kindle Paperwhite]( It looks like a really awesome reader, but I am going to have to wait for some reviews before I can say that it’s $100 better than the Paperwhite.[^note]

[^aff]: Affiliate Link (as is the post link and the other links in this post.)

[^note]: I have a Kindle Paperwhite that I absolutely love it. Also, it’s unclear from Amazon’s announcement whether or not the Paperwhite will be sold going forward.

Comics Entertainment

Taking a Look at Digital Comics Profit in the Wake of Amazon and Comixology

There has been [a]( [lot]( of [outrage]( about [Comixology’s decision to remove in-app purchasing]( from its primary comic reader app.

Some of the responses, such as [this one from Gerry Conway](, have been well thought out:

> This is a very big deal, because it strikes to the heart of what made Comixology’s app a near-perfect venue for discovering and falling in love with new comics, a venue creators and publishers have been searching for since the collapse of mainstream newsstand distribution in the late 1970s-early ’80s: it destroys the casual reader’s easy access to an impulse purchase. And that’s a terrible development for the future of comics.

But none of the responses seem to take into account the realities of the digital comics market. Before people get too up in arms about Amazon’s and Comixology’s actions, I encourage people to take a look back at [Jim Zubkavich’s breakdown of digital comics profit]( Jim points out just how much that 90[^foot] cents off the top of a $3 issue really impacts how much money is distributed to creators. *(SPOILER: Not paying Apple its cut means that the creators could be getting up to 40% more profit per book sale.)*

I full understand that it is slightly more inconvenient to have to buy comics from the website, but when looking at the numbers, I have a hard time naming Amazon and Comixology as the only villains in this scenario.

[^foot]: As a friend of mine pointed out, it seems ridiculous that Apple is taking a 30% cut on this type of in-app, content-only sale. I have a hard time believing they are playing any more of a role than a standard payment processor in these transactions, and a payment processor would only end up taking somewhere between 2-5%.


ComiXology Tries to Explain iOS Storefront Removal

Chip Mosher, comiXology's VP of marketing:

There are many advantages to shopping at Because of the content restrictions our mobile partners have, shopping on the web provides even greater selection of comic books and graphic novels. iOS customers will now be able to save money with comiXology’s exclusive web-only bundles, take advantage of subscription features and enjoy eGift cards. We also made our website more tablet/mobile friendly on all devices to make the purchasing process that much easier. And in Safari on iOS, customers can easily save a shortcut to our webstore with the “Add to Home Screen” feature.

Wow. Having to come up with garbage like that must be a really fun job.

Comics Technology

Comixology removes in-app purchases from its iOS App

You’ll still be able to read comics you’ve purchased through in-app purchasing in this new version, but you will need to sync purchases with the new app via the Restore function. And if you want, you can continue to read your existing comics through the old app; you just won’t be able to purchase new comics with it.

This is kind of a bummer. Doing everything through the iOS app was just so much easier.

Count me amongst those who think this is related to comixology being bought by Amazon.

Culture Entertainment Technology

Amazon Launches Kindle Matchbook

Amazon has launched their new [Kindle Matchbook]( service, which reviews your previous book purchases to determine if you’re eligible for discounted Kindle versions. As you would expect, only a few publishers are signed up at the moment, but hopefully this program will go as time goes on.[^fn1]

[^fn1]: Currently, I have about 20 books that I could get eBook versions for, ranging in prices of $1.99 to $2.99.


Amazon Matchmaker pairs Audible audiobooks with Kindle ebooks

Awesome. I have been wanting this feature sync Amazon first announced Whispersync.

Culture Technology

Funniest Amazon Reviews

Well done, Amazon (and Amazon’s customers.)


Amazon tests Flash support for Kindle Fire as new tablets wait in the wings

Ugh. Why can’t Flash just go away.

Internet Politics

Amazon to stop paying Minnesota bloggers for sales traffic

> Minnesota E-Fairness legislation, signed by Gov. Mark Dayton on May 23 and going into effect July 1, classifies independent bloggers and online reviewers as a physical presence of a business in the state. This means online companies who pay these people to generate new sales must collect tax not just on those sales, but on all sales in the state.

Amazon’s response? They simply cut Minnesota bloggers from their affiliates problem.

You would think state legislatures would have learned the law of unintended consequences by now.

Entertainment Technology

Amazon Prime Instant Video gets exclusive rights to ‘Justified’

This is a huge get for Amazon. Justified is a great series, and to be the exclusive streaming home for it is a major, major win.


Zombieland TV Show Headed Straight To Amazon’s Streaming Services

It has long been my hypothesis that online video delivery networks would have to start getting original content if they were going to break the stranglehold that big networks have over streaming of television content. I am glad to see that Amazon is looking like they will be getting in the original television content game.

Entertainment Law Technology

Ebook Refunds Coming from Amazon

I ended up buying a lot of ebooks because of these price increases. It looks like I might have had that extra cost refunded if I actually had bought them.


Whispersync for Voice

Gabe Weatherhead at *Macdrifter* links to Amazon’s [Whispersync for Voice]( and says “If it works, it’s an unbeatable combination that I will pay more for.” I have been using Whispersync for Voice for a week or two now and it has been working quite well for me.

It took me a little to figure out the steps to get syncing to work, but the key is to **hit the “Refresh” button in the “My Library” section of the Audible App** after you have read on your Kindle or in a Kindle app[^fn1]. This refresh is how the audio gets synced to where you finished your reading.

Amazon [has a list of free books]( you can use to see if Whispersync for Voice will work for you.

[^fn1]: I have synced between my Kindle device, Kindle for iOS, and the Audible app on my iPhone. I have not tried to sync audio-to-audio across two different instances of the Audible app on two different iOS devices

Comics Entertainment

Amazon’s First Graphic Novel

The best part? They pay you $5 to read it.


Amazon Targeting One Day Delivery

All the local retailers who complained that “Amazon did not have to pay taxes” are going to regret those complaints. Essentially, they ended up opening the path Amazon will use to move into their backyards. First it will be one day delivery, then will come same day delivery.


Best Coverage of the new Kindle Lineup

Though [The Verge]( has some good stories on [new Amazon Kindle lineup](, [Techhive]( is absolutely killing it:

* [Summary](
* [New e-reader Hands On](
* [Kinde Fire HD: Hands On](
* [How the new Kindle fires Impact the Tablet Landscape](
* [4 Things to Know Before You Buy a Kindle Fire](

The new [Paperwhite]( model looks pretty sweet.


Rumors of a new “Paperwhite” Kindle

I want one.