With the new Apple iPad ready to launch tomorrow, Amazon has rolled out an updated Kindle app for iOS that adds support for the new tablet’s high resolution display. Now text and graphics should look better on the iPad’s 2048 x 1536 screen, although the rest of the improvements in the Kindle 3.0 app are available whether you’re using the latest iPad or not.
Kindle 3.0 for iOS has a new library design that more closely resembles the one used for the Amazon Kindle Fire tablet.
There are tabs at the bottom of the screen marked Cloud and Device. The Cloud tab shows all the books, periodicals, and documents stored in your Amazon account but not yet downloaded to your device. You can tap any of those items to download them, and then they’ll show up in the Device tab.
iPhone and iPod touch users can now choose whether to arrange titles in the library by grid or list — a feature which had previously only been available to iPad users.
But the big change is support for high-resolution iPad graphics, making the new iPad one of the best devices available for reading eBooks from Amazon. The Kindle Fire Android tablet has a lower resolution 7 inch, 1024 x 600 pixel display while most Kindle eReaders with E Ink displays have 8 inch, 600 x 800 pixel displays.
On the other hand, the iPad gets about 10 hours of battery life while a Kindle Touch gets 30 or more, and the Kindle, Kindle Touch, and Kindle Keyboard are all easy to use in direct sunlight, unlike an iPad.
But ultimately, I suspect Amazon doesn’t care what device you’re using to read eBooks — as long as you’re buying at least some of them from Amazon.