Kindle's iOS App Now Appears to be Fully Accessible!
Submitted by Jen on Wednesday, May 1, 2013.
iOS & iPadOS
I just downloaded the update to the Kindle IPhone app. It claimed to have accessibility improvements. I had the "believe it when I see it" attitude, but I'm amazed to report that not only can I see my books in the library, I can read them!!!!! I think Christmas has just come in May!
That's awesome!! I've been hoping for accessibility from Kindle for a while. I'm going to download the app now. I can't wait to check it out.
On my Kindle device, I always had trouble navigating within a book, but that appears to work just fine on the IPhone app. Also, I never could see what others highlighted in a book on the device, but I can easily read highlights here! And I see that the "before you go" feature is accessible too! I can rate and review the book, and share what I've read via social networks!
The kindle app is not accessible after you open a book to read it.
Isaac, I can only assume that you haven't even downloaded the update, as you couldn't be more wrong (sigh)
i could dance around the block singing at the top of my voice (but I won't!) I will simply say WAHOOOOOOOO! It has been a long time coming however I just tried the new update and it is amazing to navigate through a book, something we have not had the privillege of doing previously. Thank you Amazon - shows how perseverance pays off
You can't buy books within the app correct? If you can, I'm missing something big.
Hi! It's great that the Kindle app for IOS is now accessible to VoiceOver users, and, with that in mind, I've just downloaded the app. But, given the inaccessibility of various forms of Kindle, I have never downloaded a Kindle book in my life. So I also want to know whether books can be downloaded through the IOS app: if not, how do they get transferred to the i-device after they've been downloaded to the computer? These may sound like stupid questions to those who are familiar with Kindle, but I'm not familiar with it at all, so the more info I can get, the better.
Well to correct my self it is accessible after all. I just had to flick down for the app to read the book.
I noticed the update in the app store this morning, and was shocked to see VoiceOver accessibility included. I did buy one Kindle book a long time ago when trying the PC Kindle program, so I had a book to test. The app is indeed accessible. VoiceOver reads the book just fine now. It's great to see Kindle finally become accessible. I'm already afraid to see how much money will be leaving my wallet soon... To answer some earlier questions, no it doesn't seem like you can search for and buy books through the Kindle app. This can be done through the amazon web site though, and I have yet to try any of the Amazon IOS apps to see if Kindle books can be purchased this way as well. When starting the Kindle app for the first time, it asks you for your Amazon username and password. Once logged in, the app will automatically check to see if any Kindle books are associated with your account. Any purchased books will appear in the main list of books. Simply find and double tap on one to download it and start reading. If books don't appear after you buy them, there is a Sync button on the Settings screen. This will make the app go check for new books added to your library.
I am glad that Amazon have finally *bothered* to make this accessible, let's see how long it is before they screw things up again. Personally, i'm not interested in buying kindle books or devices until they decide if we can listen to a book or not via the TTS on the device. Good to see we have choices of sorts but lets not make this something it isn't, it is amazon doing the right thing out of so many wrongs.
In case you didn't know, Kindle also has quite a lot of magazines and newspapers as well as books, and these also seem to be completely accessible too. I've only tried a magazine, but I assume the same is true for newspapers.
The availability of text-to-speech for specific books on Kindle devices is determined by the publisher, not Amazon. But whether or not TTS is available on the device, all books are available for reading on the IPhone, just like on the Kindle for PC app. So if you had a Kindle, and you inadvertently bought a book where TTS wasn't enabled, download it on your phone and it will read just fine.
The Kindle app uses voiceover to read with, so every book will be accessible.
Magazines and newspapers seemed to be the last frontier for accessibility, and I'm so glad they're available for reading now! Great news!
The dictionary also works within the Kindle app, although the first time I used it I had to wait to download the dictionary. Word selection was a little tricky because when I did the double tap and hold, I wasn't on the word I thought I'd selected. But you can hear "rightmost selection edge, adjustable" and "leftmost selection edge, adjustable", and if your rotor is set to words, you can move to the word you want. The definition appears at the bottom of the screen.
Good, we can read what should have been doable via VO from the start. Flags out! My point still stands, amazon were quick enough to give in to publishers rather than telling them to shove it as Apple probably would have done. As I said, took them long enough, spent my money with an ecosystem that valued the VI community first over the publisher's guild. Typical amazon though, it'll be broke soon or something else will stop them/
I read this tip on Twitter. You don't necessarily have to buy books from Amazon on your PC. If you have the Amazon Mobile app on your phone, it is possible to sign into your account and buy books from there. They'll sync to the Kindle app, and you're good to go!
I understand if people don't want to buy kindle books. However, apparently enough people wanted to badly enough that they got Amazon's attention. I can't control the future, but I do know that the kindle app wasn't accessible yesterday and today it is. If things break in the future, we can contact Amazon again. It's not rocket science folks. I say it's another option. You don't have to use it if you don't want to.
It is great news, even if is it a bit late. I for one am made up that all the major book retailers iOS apps are now accessible. Now we will, as a community, have to come to terms with having to pay for books! And, let's remember, nobody can buy Kindle books on there iOS device - Apple prevents it. so we don't need to feel bad about that.
Fair point, I was looking at the bigger picture though, there devices and such. Seems a bit quick to thank them for accessibility improvements for IOS when the new kindles don't talk. Mind you, anything's better than nothing I suppose, though I take the point you raised.
Hi. Another good point. I have personally no issue with buying books, have spent over £500 on iBooks since the devices got the VO support. For me, I suppose getting in on another ecosystem for books would be a waste, though again it is good that the iPhone app is doable.
Hi. I keep seing things on twitter from people saying that you can buy books from the kindle store right within the Amazon mobile app, and to my knowledge this isn't true. You can see the kindle book listed in the search results, but you can't actually purchase the book. To illustrate this, I tried buying a $0.99 Kindle single by Stephen King, and a more expensive novel by Dean Koontz, and both times when i went to buy them, I saw a message stating that this application does not allow for the purchase of Kindle books, and that you had to buy them using a web browser instead. That does seem to be the case because I used Safari on my iPhone and it worked very well. I bought the book, and when I launched the kindle app, the book downloaded just as I expected it to do. So I don't think it's possible, but hey, if anyone's actually been able to buy a kindle book within the amazon mobile app, I'd like to know how they did it. :)
Hi, how do I add bookmarks. I can not seem to do that. Thanks
Apologies for any confusion I may have caused with my earlier comment. I had read on Twitter that you could buy books using the Amazon Mobile app. But I tried it, and got the message saying you can only download from Amazon. But it does seem possible to browse the Kindle Store and add things to your wishlist from the mobile app.
As an avid reader I am sooo happy that the Kindle app now appears to be so VO friendly.
greetings, i don't know if anybody has encountered this but i downloaded a star wars book. dawn of the jedi force storm. upon opening the book it told me both on my iphone and ipad that the content wasn't supported by voiceover. has anybody encountered this? if so what can be done? also how can i avoid such things in the future?
If not, then I did say yesterday that Amazon couldn't be trusted. I hope you get the book working, after all, the NFB over in the US can't spend more money on this can they? Surely? No? Oh, probably!
I checked out the Star Wars: Dawn of the Jedi Force book in the Kindle store, and it appears to be a comic. Its publisher is listed as Dark Horse Comics, and under the author listing, it has four or five illustrators listed. That might be your problem in reading it. I think it may just be a book filled with pictures. I'm sorry that one doesn't work for you, but if you like Star Wars, what you might try is this. If you search for Star Wars in the Kindle Store, underneath the search results is a heading that says "departments." You can narrow the results by book categories. Just click on "science fiction", and I think it will filter out all the comics and graphic novels.
Just out of curiosity...what comparison would you draw between the two apps? I don't know if this should be asked elsewhere; I'm just curious - as a frequent user of iBooks, what reason (if any) should I consider getting the Kindle app and using it instead?
Hi. Someone asked why they would want the kindle app as well as ibooks? I have kobo, ibooks and now kindle. I guess it comes down to having a greater choice of books. Living in Australia, there isn't as much content available. Having 3 ebbok readers on the iphone gives me greater choice. A lot of times something that isn't available in ibooks may be available on kobo or kindle. Oh I forgot I also have google play but don't seem to use it as much as the other 3. I hope this makes sense.
Yep - I was mainly just wondering if there were any features about the Kindle app that would lead people to recommend using it as my primary ebook app. I suppose I could stop being lazy and just check it out myself... :P
I got the Kindle app, but haven't been able to try it propperly yet as I haven't bought any books from Amazon yet. I know there are other sites that have books in the Kindle format, such as Baen Books, a publisher of science fiction and fantasy novels. I was just wondering if it's possible to read books from these sites using the app, or can it only read what you get through Amazon?
As written above, living in Australia limits one's choices, so having another source for books available is very welcome. Also, for me, the kindle app is easier and faster to navigate/use.
This is brilliant. It works so well. There's a book that hasn't been available to me in Australia anywhere else, and now I can finally read it. I won't be ever updating this app unless I get some reassurance that it's accessible. Well, either that or I'll just keep back up copies of this version. Anyway, the point I wanted to make is that we should all encourage Amazon along this road towards universal accessibility by doing what we can to show our appreciation. Hopefully Amazon will see an increase, however slight, in the downloads of the iOS Kindle app and Kindle books after this release. That would help convince it that it was worth the expense. Also, I hope everyone else does what I plan to do and rate the Kindle app 5 stars and comment on its accessibility. If problems with accessibility arise in the future, we can rate those versions accordingly. If we're all active in rating hopefully it will make enough of a difference that Amazon will notice.