Dear Amazon Kindle Support

My response, the next day, 18/03/2012

Thank you for those instructions. As I said previously, only step 4 will show my content correctly, none of the other steps seem to work since the new update.

I’ve just checked and it seems to happen on both iPads. Uninstalling and re-registering my app every time I buy a new book could get annoying very quickly…

—————

And you know when you think “this can’t be happening”, my friendly clarification turned into something that really didn’t have anything to do with my initial query. I guess that’s the price for outsourcing major customer support to Rajneej and his cousin to the ourskirts of Delhi.

Amazon’s confused response, a few hours later:

Dear Customer,

Thank you for contacting us at Amazon.co.uk.

I’m sorry to hear about the problems you are experiencing with your Kindle for iPad app.

After looking into your enquiry, I would request you to contact us on phone or chat as it would be easier to help you over the phone or via chat.

You can reach us via chat or freephone directly by clicking the Contact Us option in the right-hand column of our Kindle Support pages at

http://www.amazon.co.uk/kindlesupport

When you visit our website and select Contact Us, click on the “Phone” tab, enter your number, and we will call you right back. For chat, please click on the “Chat” tab on the Contact Us help page.

Contacting us through the website allows you to verify security before a call is placed and ensures we have your account information ready when we call you. If you’re unable to take advantage of the Contact Us feature, you can call us directly at Freephone 0800 496 2449 or +44 203 356 6212 if you’re calling from outside the U.K.

We hope you can contact us soon so we can help solve this problem quickly.

Thank you for shopping at Amazon.co.uk.

——————

Knowing full well my issue would not be fixed, and that no further communication would result in a solution to my problem – or that of thousands of others – I thought let’s turn this into a game (and a blog post).





5 thoughts on “Dear Amazon Kindle Support

  1. Hey Jay, if your Kindle is giving you fits, try the Amazon Cloud Reader at http://read.amazon.com. I don’t have a Kindle, and I’m working my way through an awesome series on the Cloud reader (“Caged Flower” by Cullman Wallace, YA fiction but so entertaining that the 60+ years old women in my office are hooked on it). The Cloud reader works great, and while I’d still rather hold an actual hardcover book in my lap and read under a single lamp on a cold night, that Cloud reader will satisfy some cravings in a pinch. Be sure to check it out!

    1. Hi Nick,

      That’s an awesome tip – thank you very much for bringing this to my attention. I had never heard of the Amazon Cloud Reader before – it’s surprising because Amazon are usually bombarding me with emails about their products from both sides of the Atlantic.

      I just tried to sign in with my Amazon UK account, half suspecting it would say that this service won’t work unless I use an Amazon US account – but I was greeted with quite the opposite: all my content was there, just like on my Kindle.

      So the Cloud Reader basically eliminates the need for a separate app to read content. No matter what device you have, the Cloud Reader just works – any tablet, any computer, as long as there’s a web browser on it we can read our Kindle purchases.

      Thank you so much Nick!

      1. Well, ONE small issue with the Cloud Reader. Like first through third generation Kindles, it uses the old Mobi Pocket format. If you read something created in Kindle 8 format, you may have some issues.

        Found this from a post on Cullman Wallace’s Facebook page:

        =====================================================
        If you’ve bought Book Three of the “Caged Flower” series, two things. First of all, thank you! Secondly, you may need to delete and download it again.

        Turns out first- through third-generation Kindle devices and readers use an old standard for e-books (or so I’m told) and just don’t know what to do with some of the advanced formatting of the Kindle 8 standard. (If the two lines of the dedication in Book Three are not centered against each other, you’ve got one that needs the updated Book Three.)

        I’ve implemented some workarounds that should enable you to see the book exactly as it was intended on any Kindle device or reader program. You will need to download the new copy, however, and that means deleting your current copy. (Make sure you’re deleting it from your device or reader program, NOT from your Amazon account!)

        Amazon hopefully will provide a device/software update soon that will enable your device to read the new Kindle 8 format, but in the meanwhile, I’ll work to make sure you can enjoy the “Caged Flower” books on ANY device.
        =====================================================

        I sent him a message about it, and he said that he downloads all his own books to check for errors and formatting issues, and that he had trouble with “reverse italics” (some chapters in the book are flashbacks and completely in italics, and he would switch back to non-italic text for emphasis.) He said plain text inside those italicized chapters remained in italics, and there were several places where it completely ignored indented lines. Kindle devices, the Cloud Reader, and the preview function when publishing a book all had the same issues.

        So the Cloud Reader is not perfect. But still a cheap, useful alternative to buying a Kindle, or a handy backup if your Kindle is dead or uncharged. (And BTW: Wallace seems to be a real nice guy, and the books are GREAT.)

        1. Thanks for letting me know. So which devices use Kindle 8 format then? And will Amazon offer two versions of their content, one for older and one for newer devices? That’s a very messy back end I would imagine…

          I found another issue with the cloud reader: thinking it would be the perfect workaround to read my Kindle content in the browser of my B&N Nook Tablet, I was met with the message “this browser is not supported”. Shame that! Would have been best of both worlds.

  2. Good question, and I didn’t know. Here’s Amazon’s answer on the subject, from the page at http://www.amazon.com/gp/feature.html?docId=1000729511:

    ================================================
    Q: Will KF8 capabilities be available on all Kindle devices?

    A: Kindle Fire is the first Kindle device to support KF8 – in the coming months we will roll out KF8 to our latest generation Kindle e-ink devices as well as our free Kindle reading apps.
    ================================================

    Their next answer in that FAQ says that Kindle 8 will be backwards-compatible for Mobi format books. The new features in Kindle 8 do look awesome, though. HTML5 and CSS3, embedded fonts, even Adobe’s SVG graphics format. I imagine for most books, you could get pretty much the same results from both Mobi and Kindle 8, but Kindle 8 probably takes a lot of the headache out of it.

    I also see where they are releasing a beta Kindle Plugin for Adobe InDesign. The folks who don’t know much about HTML and CSS would probably quite like that, but I’d wager you the end result would be HUGE compared to one created by hand in an HTML editor like Adobe Dreamweaver. And since I’m told larger books cost more in “electronic delivery fees”, the pros would probably want to go lean and mean.

    As far as the Nook, did you REALLY think they’d let you get away with that one?

    😉

Add your voice