Introducing the Kindle Owners’ Lending Library
With Prime, Kindle owners can now choose from thousands of books to borrow for free including over 100 current and former New York Times Bestsellers – as frequently as a book a month, with no due dates.
Amazon’s Prime membership just keeps getting better. It started as a privilege programme for free 2-day shipping for members. Recently, it added instant streaming of thousands of movies and TV shows (I signed up just for the Amazon Instant Video feature).
Now, you can even borrow Kindle titles for a book each calendar month, from a limited selection of just over 5,000 titles. At the moment of writing, I can see 5,159 titles in the Owners’ Lending Library.
We can read up to 12 full Kindle titles a year for free. If we conservatively assume each Kindle title to be USD5, then that’s already USD60 worth of Kindle books.
All this for just USD79 a year.
However, you must meet the following conditions:
- You must own an actual Kindle device (the Kindle e-reader or Kindle Fire). Kindle apps on iPad, Android, BlackBerry, and PC devices do not qualify.
- You must be an Amazon Prime member.
- You must be based in US. If you are overseas, you need to change the Kindle’s country settings to a US mailing address. However, you do not require a US credit card.
This is a very innovative move by Amazon. It increases the value of a Kindle device, including the older Kindle e-readers (such as the 3rd-generation Kindle keyboard I own).
And it really provides an unique selling proposition to the new Kindle Fire 7″ touch-screen Android-based tablet in Amazon’s bid to dislodge Apple from the top of the tablet market.
Amazon is building its own eco-system of books, movies and music, similar to what Apple has done with iTunes, but potentially on a greater scale given Amazon’s position as the biggest online retailer.
Along with its loss-leading price tag of just USD199, the Kindle Fire is sure to be a hot-seller this Christmas season.