Kindle vs iBooks on the iPad

I know others disagree and find the Kindle app on the iPad superior to the iBooks app, but I disagree.

And there are signs that Apple is declaring war on the Kindle app. That may be. I still wish that Amazon would step up their efforts with the Kindle app on the iPad. It's pretty clear Amazon is not a software company, and it's a shame, because I really want them to succeed with this.

Here's my list of things that annoys me about the iPad Kindle app:

  • Page turning is just too slow and jagged
  • When you want to highlight or otherwise select a chunk of text, you Have to hold too still for way too long in order to get the selection going. Way too often, it misinterprets my gesture.
  • It's way too easy to accidentally turn a page when you want to select something near the edges of the page.
  • It doesn't show number of pages left in chapter. I really like this feature from iBooks. There's an important clue here, in deciding when to stop reading and go to sleep.
  • Going back then forward is not going to get you back to the same spot. This is a real bummer. iBooks seems to calculate page numbers and the start of each page when you change orientation or font size. Kindle insists on being fluing all the time and talk in terms of 'location' rather than page numbers. But the fact that going back a page, then forward a page very often won't land you in the same place you started is super-annoying to me.
  • Location numbers are completely meaningless to me. I much prefer iBooks' page numbers, even if they're not consistent between orientation or font size cahnges. They're still more meaningful than location numbers, which are way too big to be remmebered, and have no meaning to me at all.
  • If you want to select to the end of a paragraph you have to move your finger to the end of the last word on the last line, you can't just drag it down the right edge, which is usually more natural. This is just weird. Shouldn't be this way.
  • When selecting from an emdash it considers the word before and the dash and the word after as one word. It ought to be smarter about this.

I really wish Amazon would take this platform just a bit more seriously.

Right now there are books that I have purchased for Kindle that I've re-purchased for iBooks, just because I much prefer the iBooks interface.

I also prefer how the iBooks library looks and works, the bookshelf view, but I didn't put it in the list, because to me this is not in the same category of the other issues.

1 comment


110% agree!!! iBooks is far superior than Kindle. I just wish you could read Kindle books in iBooks, but only because Kindle books tend to be cheaper, the range on offer is much larger & they can be viewed & read on a Mac/PC & not just in iBooks on an Apple device. Works both ways though, you can't read iBooks books in Kindle, not that you'd want to even if you did have the choice!
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