Library eBooks Coming to the Kindle

Amazon has bowed to the inevitable. Today it announced that you would soon be able to borrow eBooks from your local library and read them on your Kindle. The service is going to launch later this year in partnership with Overdrive.

I’m sure you’re excited, but the question on my mind was what took them so long? The Kindle could have had this feature at launch. We’ve been waiting for 2 and a half years for Amazon to enable a service that already existed.

As you may know, the Kindle eBook format is basically the same as the old Mobipocket format. Kindle has a couple extra pieces of DRM, but other than that it functionally is the same. Mobipocket has supported library eBooks since (I believe) 2006. Actually, it might be more accurate to say that Overdrive first offered library eBooks in Mobipocket format 2006; the file format supported the idea of expiring eBooks long before.

Still, this is good news.

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