Despite what fans of physical books may say, the Amazon Kindle has modernized the reading experience. It has offered people new ways to read books, and carrying hundreds of novels on a device you can keep in your bag is priceless.
However, most people don’t realize that there are benefits to owning a Kindle beyond the ability to buy an ebook on Amazon. So, in this article, we list some of the many Kindle benefits that let you take full advantage of your Amazon eReader.
1. The Benefits of Kindle Unlimited
Even if you love real books, you should buy a Kindle because of Kindle Unlimited. While Kindle Unlimited can have its ups and downs in terms of quantity over quality, this program is a heavyweight in terms of reading options. It’s also one of the overwhelming benefits of owning a Kindle device.
You can access Amazon’s massive digital library, which contains over 1 million ebooks, for a nominal subscription fee. Its low price and the huge library make Kindle Unlimited a Netflix for ebooks.
So long as you’re subscribed, you can read as many novels as you want every month.
Still think that Kindle Unlimited is too expensive? Consider the fact that most bestselling ebooks sell for $10 a pop. This means that Kindle Unlimited is a steal even if you only enjoy one book per month.
2. Join the Amazon First Reads Program
Most people subscribe to Amazon Prime for the free two-day shipping and access to Prime Video. However, there are other Amazon Prime benefits you’ve probably overlooked.
One of those benefits is the Amazon First Reads program. With Amazon First Reads, Prime members get early access to one free Kindle book each month. You can pick a book of your choice from a pre-selected showcase of soon-to-be-released novels. In other words, you get one-month early access to one book every month.
While most people can be picky over what they read, each month’s offerings are spread across multiple genres and categories. As such, there’s a good chance that something will catch your eye.
As a bonus, you can also buy one of many pre-selected hardcover novels for a discounted price. You can find more details on the Amazon Prime benefits page.
3. Use Amazon Prime Reading
Amazon Prime Reading is another benefit of owning an Amazon Kindle. It’s accessible to anyone with a full Amazon Prime membership connected to Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.de, Amazon.fr, or an Amazon.co.jp account.
With Amazon Prime Reading, you gain free unlimited access to a rotating catalog of over a thousand ebooks, magazines, and comics each month. Read as much as you want with no restrictions. Amazon Prime Reading even includes books with Audible narration, so you can switch between reading and listening.
If you don’t have your Kindle eReader with you, this excellent feature is still available on your phone or tablet. You can access it via the Kindle app for iOS and Android.
4. Lend Books With the Lending for Kindle Feature
Did you know that you can also share your Kindle books with other family members and friends?
The ability to lend books through Kindle was a feature that was advertised when Amazon released the first device. However, the Kindle Book Lending feature has seemingly been forgotten.
While this program does have its benefits, there are some major limitations. The biggest being that you can only lend a book once.
Once you loan your ebook, the borrower has 14 days to read the ebook before it must be returned. While loaned, the lender can’t read the ebook.
Note: This feature is only available to Kindle books purchased directly from Amazon.com, and the lending and borrowing accounts must be registered in the same marketplace to be able to lend Kindle books.
5. Use the Kindle Public Library
If you’ve decided which Kindle device to buy, you should take advantage of your public library too. You may be asking yourself, “Why should I get a Kindle when I have access to the library?” Because you can use your Kindle as a literal library, too.
One of our favorite Kindle features is checking out eligible ebooks from public libraries. This lending service becomes invaluable if you’re too busy to go into a library to grab a new book.
How does this Kindle Public Library service work?
- This feature is only available in the US. Everyone else is out of luck.
- The ebooks are offered through a service called OverDrive.
- Through OverDrive, you can search for your library to see if it’s part of the program.
- If it is, all you have to do is get a free library membership card at your library to start borrowing ebooks.
You can find specific instructions on borrowing a library book on the Kindle Public Library page.
Note: Not all public libraries participate in the Kindle Public Library program. For those that do, every library will have its unique selection of books to offer. Once borrowed, you will need to return those books within a specific time.
6. Read Newspapers and Magazines on Kindle
If you like monthly nonfiction updates, Kindle also offers a unique service where you can subscribe to periodicals like newspapers and magazines.
This feature, called Kindle Newsstand, is somewhat niche but surprisingly convenient. Essentially, you can subscribe to individual newspapers through Amazon. Each periodical will have its own price tag attached, and each issue will be delivered to your Kindle when made available to the public.
If you subscribe to Kindle Unlimited, you can choose up to three magazine subscriptions from the Kindle Newsstand as part of the deal.
7. Add Your Device to a Kindle Family Library
One of the lesser-known advantages of Kindle is that Kindle users can benefit from a Kindle Family Library. When two Amazon accounts are linked, they can share their media using an Amazon Household feature.
You can easily set up and manage an Amazon Household account, and each account can designate whether they want to share all of their media or only select items. If you have a close-knit family and share the same tastes in books, this might be a good option.
So what can be shared through the Kindle Family Library?
- Kindle books with Amazon First Reads.
- Kindle books with Prime Reading.
And what can’t be shared through the Family Library?
- Kindle newspapers.
- Kindle magazines.
8. Try a Kindle Book Sample Before You Buy It
One of the best built-in features found in Kindle devices is the ability to download and read “samples” of ebooks before buying them.
There is no deadline for reading this sample, nor any upfront payment. The samples are 100 percent free and can be easily deleted from your Kindle once you have read them. This allows you to dramatically decrease the risk of buying something you don’t like.
How does it work?
- When you browse the Kindle store through your device and click on a book’s info page, you should see a button beneath the book cover and price that says Try a Sample.
- When you click on that button, the sample will be downloaded to your device, free of charge.
Samples are typically very short, usually no more than up to the first (or second) chapter of a book. Essentially, they’re long enough that you can decide whether the book’s writing style will be something you’ll enjoy.
If you buy the book directly through your Kindle device, the sample will automatically convert into the full novel version.
Lastly, one of the best ways to take advantage of your device is not through some lending service but through the organizational tools on your Kindle. There are many ways to organize your Amazon Kindle, whether you have just a few books or dozens of them.
While it’s great that each individual Kindle can carry tons of books, this collection can become unmanageable once you buy your first hundred or so novels.
To make browsing your books easier, you can organize your Kindle downloads into custom folders, which Amazon calls Collections. These folders can be named according to your tastes.
For example, you can have two folders called “Complete” and “Currently Reading,” so it’s easier to sort through the books you’ve read and the ones you need to finish.
Additionally, you can organize how your Kindle Library displays these collections by clicking on View Options from the Kindle Library homepage. Basically, manually adjusting how your Kindle organizes your files will make buying, finding, and reading those books a breeze.
Take Full Advantage of Your Amazon Kindle
All of these features are a great way to take advantage of your Kindle, even if you prefer printed books over digital ebooks. If you don’t have an eReader, we also think these are great reasons to buy a Kindle, too.
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