Q: Why doesn’t Amazon support the popular “e-pub” standard used by your competitors and many libraries?
A: We are innovating so rapidly that having our own standard allows us to incorporate new things at a very rapid rate. For example: Whispersync (which uses wireless connections to sync your place in a book across devices) and changing font sizes.
I call Shenanigans on this line of argument. Kindle supports PDF and plain text files, for heaven’s sake! Plain text files don’t have Whispersync either, but it’s still nice to have support for other formats.
It’s not as if adding ePub support would be hard, either.
Want to see how hard it is to support ePub? Follow along.
- Go download the ePub version of this book. It’s a good one, trust me.
- rename the file from .epub to .zip
- Open the zip
See, ePub is just a zip file full of XHTML.
So what’s the deal, can the Kindle not render HTML?
Nope. The new Kindle comes with a webkit browser, so I’m pretty sure it can handle HTML rendering.
There’s really no excuse for the Kindle not to support ePub.
I still have an old-ass first generation Kindle, that won’t even read PDFs, let alone ePubs. I read a lot of PDFs for work, and the old Kindle isn’t going to cut it anymore.
Although Amazon added PDF support for Kindle a few months ago, they neglected to issue the update for Kindle 1, to my great consternation.
I suppose I could stomp out in a huff and buy a nook, but I already have something like 60 books in the Kindle format.
So, despite my sense of indignation at the lack of ePub support and general grumpiness at being overlooked for the PDF upgrade. I went ahead pre-ordered one of the shiny new Kindles.
Vendor lock-in is a bitch.