Do you ever feel as if you could be shopping smarter when it comes to Amazon? That other people out there know the tricks to securing the best deals, free shipping and more? Well, it’s true. Other people do know these tricks, but thankfully they’re also willing to share them with you. This free Consumer’s Amazon Shopping Guide outlines everything you need to know to make best use of Amazon and secure the best deals.
Enjoy and share this guide with friends!
Amazon.com has its now iconic name because founder Jeff Bezos thought that it brought to mind a place that’s different, exotic and huge. Though he had no way of knowing his company would become one of the world’s largest retailers, it was his dream from the start.
Those dreams have been fulfilled and then some more. Amazon has, over time, branched into a number of different businesses. It’s now a publisher, a cloud computing service, a used goods marketplace, a hardware OEM and an online media provider. All of these new businesses have reinforced Amazon’s position as a global force in retail by giving the company new avenues of revenue and adding complimentary features.
Yet, in spite of the growth, Amazon is still primarily a store. That is how most people interact with the company and that is where it makes most of its revenue.
0.1 – What’s Covered In This Guide?
This is a consumer’s guide to Amazon. It is approached from a perspective that focuses on Amazon as a store and will cover advice from that perspective.
In the early chapters the two most basic features of Amazon will be addressed – buying and selling. Doing either is not particularly difficult, but there’s complexity beneath the surface. I’ll be talking about things like the difference between Amazon itself and partnered sellers, the best ways to find great deals and how to price your own used items you’d like to sell on the site.
Later chapters will go deeper into some of the more complex portions of the site, including how to manage and change orders, create custom wish lists and improve Amazon’s recommendations. And this will all be wrapped up by highlighting extensions, software and products that mesh well with what Amazon offers.
0.2 – What’s Not Covered?
You won’t find information not related to the consumer in this guide. Although we’ll talk about how to sell items, there is no information here about how to effectively set up or manage an Amazon store as a business for profit. There’s no information here about publishing online via Amazon, either. I am also going to skip the cloud computing service. It’s mainly used by businesses small and large rather than consumers.
All three of these topics are surely of interest to many people, but they are all so broad and important that they deserve their own guide. We may one day publish such guides but we do not have plans at this moment.
1.1 – The Basics Of Navigating Amazon.com
Amazon may be online, but it is set up like most retailers – in departments. Each department has domain over specific products. As of time of this writing there are 9 main departments on Amazon.com, each of which is broken up into numerous smaller sections. These can all be accessed via the left sidebar.
Many people who visit Amazon no doubt just use the search tool to find a specific product. That also works, of course, but anyone interested in browsing the site should give the department pages close attention. Each is different and provides access to further categories as well as any relevant best-seller lists and sales.
You can also browse sections by using the site’s Full Store Directory. It is what it sounds like – a simple listing of all the different departments and sub-departments. The bottom of the directory also includes links to all current Amazon deals and exclusives. This is a good place to find great deals, something we’ll discuss further in this chapter.
Departments are still relevant even if you rely on search to navigate the site. Amazon automatically limits its search to whatever department you are browsing, which means you’ll be searching a department rather than the entire site. This can become confusing if you forget to change departments when trying to search for a different type of product. Fortunately, you can change the department you’re searching at any time by clicking the drop-down menu in the search bar. You can also set it to search the entire site at once.
1.2 – Finding Great Deals
There are several different sub-sites on Amazon that offer deals. Some focus on new items while others focus on items that are overstock or have been returned.
Gold Box and Deals & Bargains are the places to go for deals on new products. The Gold Box site is updated with daily deals as well as “lightning deals” which last for only two hours and are limited in number. Deals & Bargains, on the other hand, focuses on recurring and long-running offers that usually focus on a specific category, such as women’s shoes or home hardware.
Amazon Outlet and Warehouse Deals focus on overstock and returns, respectively. The Outlet basically operates like another department and sells products that are new, but discounted. Items found at Warehouse Deals, on the other hand, have been returned but remain in working order. Be warned, however, that the items sold at Warehouse deals may have noticeable cosmetic damage.
MakeUseOf published a number of articles about getting the best deals on Amazon:
- 4 Ways To Keep Tabs On Amazon Daily Deals
- 5 Places To Find Amazon Promotional Codes
- Amazon’s Price Drop Monitor Will Help You Snag Deals
- The 3 Best Amazon Price Trackers
Sometimes you will find the best deals if you wait. If you place an item on your Amazon wish list you will be shown how much the price has dropped (if any) from the moment it was listed. This is an excellent way to keep tabs on items you’d like to buy but don’t immediately need.
You can also utilize a third-party price tracking site such as CamelCamelCamel. Sites such as this constantly monitor the pricing of all products on Amazon and can provide you with a graph that shows how pricing has fluctuated over time. This will help you discover if the product is currently sold at a historically low price.
1.3 – The Difference Between Amazon And Partnered Sellers
As you browse you will no doubt notice that there are many items on the site that are not shipped and sold by Amazon. Instead they are provided by some other partnered company. You may wonder if these sellers are as trustworthy or quick as Amazon itself.
Sellers are obliged to honor the shipping times that are offered by Amazon. The product also has to be exactly as shown in both description and condition. Amazon acts as a middle-man for payment, so your payment information is not passed on to the seller.
There are some key differences, however. The first you’ll likely notice is shipping price. Sellers can set their own shipping price and don’t have to honor the special deals Amazon usually provides, such as free Super Saver shipping. Items provided by a seller are also not eligible for the free two-day shipping provided to Amazon Prime customers. And, as you might guess, orders sent to multiple sellers can’t be bundled to reduce shipping costs.
You will also notice differences if you need to contact customer service. Sellers have their own customer service departments and set their own policies. Perhaps the biggest difference, and one that’s specifically cited on Amazon’s own help pages, is shipping an item back to a seller is not free. The customer is responsible for those charges.
Personally, I’ve bought a fair amount of items from sellers and I have had no problems. It is generally best to buy items fulfilled by Amazon, however. Buying from a seller means you won’t enjoy the company’s excellent customer service or excellent shipping deals.
1.4 – Saving Money On Shipping
Amazon Super Saver Shipping is the easiest way to negate shipping costs. Available with most orders that are above $25 and fulfilled by Amazon, this shipping option can take as much as two weeks to reach your door but costs absolutely nothing. You’ll find it listed as a shipping option on any eligible order (Amazon selects standard shipping by default).
It’s important to remember the difference between “fulfilled by Amazon” and the Amazon partners I talked about in the previous section of this chapter. You will not receive super saver shipping options on products from partners, and they don’t participate in Amazon Prime.
Speaking of which, let’s touch on Prime now. It is a program that lets shoppers pay a fee of $8 per month or $80 per year in exchange for free two-day shipping. This deal is only applicable to “fulfilled by Amazon” orders and doesn’t impact any delay on sending the item to shipping, such as limited availability. Prime subscribers also receive release-date delivery for free and can upgrade to one-day shipping for $3.99.
Is this a good deal? It depends on your habits. For Prime to work out you need to be a frequent shopper because the price premium on two-day shipping (compared to super saver shipping) is often around five to ten dollars. This means that, even if we use the higher estimate of 10 dollars, you’d have to order about once per month to break even.
Consumers also need to shop for items that are stocked by Amazon rather than a partner in order to use Prime. This means that Prime is best for consumers who want popular products. For example, a photography enthusiast will have no problem finding a selection of cameras and lenses that are fulfilled by Amazon and eligible for free two-day shipping. But this same enthusiast may have trouble finding eligible camera bags, lighting equipment and lens adapters as niche items are usually sold by partners.
One final tip for saving money on shipping is the use of a “filler” item. The $25 cutoff for super saver shipping is frustrating if you’re a buck or two away from it. Websites like Filler Item Finder can help you overcome this obstacle by locating Fulfilled By Amazon Items that only cost a few bucks or even a few cents.
2.1 – Setting Up A Seller Account
Amazon can be a great place to sell items online, we have actually already covered how to sell items on Amazon in the past. The company does take a small cut of items sold, even when they’re sold by private individuals. However, this is off-set by a shipping credit applied to every item and the huge number of buyers that use the site. Amazon is an excellent place to get rid of anything that you’d like to sell quickly.
To sell your items on Amazon you will first need a seller account. This is not part of your normal account, so if you’ve never sold anything you likely don’t have one. You can get started by going to Your Account and then finding Seller Account listed along the right side of the page.
There are two kinds of seller accounts. This guide is for consumers, not retailers, so you will likely sign up as a “Sell Your Stuff” seller. This lets you sell 40 items per month and charges 99 cents per sale plus a percentage of the sale. You will also need to enter a credit/debit account that your sales can be credited to. Finally, Amazon will verify your identity by calling a phone number you specify with a one-time PIN. And that’s it! You’re ready to sell.
2.2 – How To List Items
Once you’ve signed up for a seller account you can list items by going to the Seller Account link on the right side of the Your Account page. This will open up the Seller Central interface.
At the top is an Inventory tab which, when you hover over it, will reveal an “Add A Product” option. Clicking that will bring you to a search dialog that lets you find the item that you want to sell. Results will appear after you click search and can be further refined using category filters on the left hand side. When you find the item you want click the “Sell Yours” button next to it.
Doing this will bring up the page where you fill out information about your item. Most of this is self-explanatory, but there are a few areas of note. Chief among these is the price.
Amazon will provide you with the current lowest listed price after you select the item’s condition, but this doesn’t provide you with enough information to make a decision. It’s a good idea to go to the item’s page on Amazon and examine other current offers.
Let’s say, for example, that the lowest price on any item is $20 less than the rest of the offers already available. It’s probably wise not to beat the lowest price because that item will quickly be sold, leaving only offers at the higher price available to buyers.
You also should pay attention to the shipping options. Amazon’s default is 4-14 business days. You can choose an expedited shipping offer, however, and doing so will net you a larger shipping credit to compensate. This can make your item more appealing to certain buyers, but be warned – the extra shipping credit is rarely enough to cover the extra cost of shipping.
Once you are done click “Save and Finish” at the bottom of the page to list your item.
2.3 – Managing Inventory
Return to the Inventory tab we already visited (in the upper left hand corner) but this time click on “Manage Inventory.” This will open the main inventory management display.
As an amateur you’ll find a fair amount of information here that you will probably never use, such as merchant SKUs. But the inventory management screen is a good place to go if you want to see items that still have not sold and deactivate them or change their price.
Perhaps the best information is on the right side of the inventory display. That’s where you can examine your current selling price and the item’s low price on Amazon. The prices for items on Amazon can be fluid and a price you thought fair could be under-cut by several other sellers. Using your Manage Inventory display to check on this at-a-glance can show you why items are still in your closet instead of out the door.
As mentioned, a lot of information here doesn’t pertain to amateurs. Fortunately you can eliminate it. Find the Preferences button near the top of the display to open the display preferences panel. Here you can eliminate all of the inventory information that you don’t want to see.
2.4 – Managing Orders
Amazon will email your default email address when you receive an order. Unless you changed your handling time when you made the item listing you will have two days to send the item on its way.
It’s not enough to just ship the item, however. Amazon wants to know about it and notify the person who bought your item. This means you need to add a confirmation of shipping to the order.
To do this, open your seller account, click the Orders tab and then select Manage Orders. In this view you will be able to print a packing slip (which is not required, but helpful) and confirm shipment. You’ll find these options on the right hand side of the page. You do not need to use shipping with a tracking method to confirm shipment, but it obviously will make the buyer feel more at ease.
This same Manage Orders display can be accessed at any time to view your previous orders, but there’s not much else to do in this view. You are not able to customize it in the same way as the Manage Inventory display.
You may sometimes need to cancel and refund an order. This can be done by clicking Refund Order in the Manage Orders view. If the buyer is requesting cancellation or return you can deal with that by going back to the Orders tab and selecting Manage Returns.
Refunds will be taken from your current Amazon balance. If there’s no Amazon balance the company will charge your primary account on file. Be careful to consider this when issuing a refund.
2.5 – Getting Paid
Receiving payment from Amazon is fairly simple. They will already have your primary account information file from when you signed up, so as long as that’s still valid, there’s nothing you need to do besides wait. Payments are sent out every 14 days.
You can check your balance at any time by visiting the main seller account page and checking the Payments Summary box in the right hand sidebar. This will tell your current balance and notify you of any recent payments. You also can request a manual, immediate disbursement of the funds rather than waiting for automatic disbursement – but keep in mind it usually takes several days for the funds to post to your deposit account. To view reports, click on the balance listed for your account (it is a hyperlink).
The account that receives payment can be changed by hovering over the Settings tab and clicking Account Info. Your bank account will be listed under Deposit Method. Below that you’ll find Charge Method, which is the account that will be charged for refunds if your Amazon balance is depleted.
3.1 – Managing Kindle Downloads
This part of Amazon can be a bit confusing simply because it’s tied to the Kindle, branding-wise, but does not require a Kindle reader or tablet. If you’ve ever bought an eBook, app or video content from Amazon, for any platform, you will find stuff stored in the Kindle section.
To access this section go to Your Account and then scroll down to Digital Content. Open the Manage Your Kindle page. This will open a Kindle Library display that shows all digital content you’ve ever purchased. The only Amazon digital content that you will not find here is your MP3 downloads and your Mac or PC software.
Your library really serves as a directory that sends you to other sub-sections of Amazon digital content that you can also visit directly. For example, if you click the Actions button next to an app in your Library you will only receive an option to visit the Your Apps page. Same goes for video. However, you can send an eBook to a Kindle device, or reset the current page you are on, by clicking Actions in the Library.
The Manage Your Kindle page can also be used to deal with the nitty-gritty of your devices and payment information. You can find this under Your Kindle Account in the sidebar. What you can do is limited, however – for example, you can re-register devices or un-subscribe from digital publications, but you won’t find any options for adding new ones.
3.2 – Your Media Library
If you visit Your Account you will notice another library in addition to your Kindle Library. This one is called Your Media Library and it can be used to access eBooks, music, video and video games.
Your Media Library is a bit of a mess, however, because it will for some reason list items that have no physical component. Users also can’t immediately watch videos or download music and software. I recommend banishing this page from thought and instead turning to the individual sections I’ll outline below.
3.3 – Reading eBooks
There is no option to read eBooks on any Amazon page or download them directly to your computer. If you would like to read an eBook you have purchased you must do so by using Kindle hardware or a Kindle app. The app is free and available for all major desktop and mobile platforms.
The app cannot be used to review books, however, nor can it be used to buy new ones or organize your collection. If you’d like to only organize eBooks you can do so by visiting kindle.amazon.com. This sub-site will let you browse your Kindle collection, change reading status, rate books, and view best sellers.
You can also use the main Amazon site to review, browse and buy eBooks, of course. The dedicated Kindle site is more friendly to Kindle tablets, however, and also easier to use (in my opinion) than the Amazon store app for those same devices.
3.4 – Watching Video
If you click on the Actions button of video content in your Kindle Library you will be sent to the Manage Your Videos page. You can also visit this page directly from Your Account or the drop-down menu that appears when you hover over the Your Account button on any Amazon page.
This is another library, called Your Video Library, and it lists the same stuff as the Kindle Library. The information is more detailed, however, and you’ll be able to see thumbnail views of programs you’ve purchased online. Using this page is preferable if you want to browse and watch content you’ve purchased or rented.
More importantly, you can easily watch video by clicking on any thumbnail and then clicking on the “Watch Now” options that appear. This will take you straight to the Amazon Instant Video player.
There is no way to download video that you’ve purchased directly to your PC but you can download it via the Unbox Video Player that is provided by Amazon. Unbox lets you watch the DRM-protected content offline, but you will have to watch in the Unbox player or using the Unbox plug-in for Windows Media Center.
3.5 – Listening To And Downloading MP3s
Amazon MP3 purchases work like eBooks. There’s no way to listen to them directly from the Amazon main site. Instead you need to use Amazon Cloud Player, a web app (on computers) or mobile app (on smartphones and tablets).
Cloud Player is a fairly simple app. You can play music that’s in your cloud player and you can download music, as well. This can be done one-by-one or queued to create playlists to download in bulk. It’s also possible to delete music, but that’s not wise if the song was purchased from Amazon. You’ll be destroying the most convenient way to re-acquire that song if you happen to lose it.
You can also upload songs not purchased on Amazon to Cloud Player. The free version of Cloud Player can hold up to 250 imported songs, which can then be played anywhere using Cloud Player on other PCs or mobile devices. If you pay $24.99 a year you can access Cloud Player Premium, which increases the import cap to 250,000 songs.
3.6 – Downloading Software
Digital software purchases are easy to find. All that’s required is a quick visit to Your Account and then a trip down to the Your Games And Software Library listed under Digital Content. The page which appears will show you both your product code and will also include a download link. It’s that simple.
4.1 – Managing Orders
Ordering on Amazon is fairly simple, so I’m not going to spend much time going into it. What I will cover, however, is Amazon’s order management interface. Once you’ve placed an order it’s recorded in the Orders section of Your Account. You can reach this at any time via the big yellow Your Orders button on the Your Account page.
The Orders page is broken up into three sections. First is Orders Listed By Date. This is simple, though it is worth noting that Amazon doesn’t actually let users search by date. Users can only search via a limited number of time periods (via the drop-down on the right) or via keyword (using the Search Orders field).
The Open Orders section will simply list any orders that have not yet shipped. Digital Orders is a legacy field that is no longer relevant, and it will tell you so if you visit this area. Users interested in managing digital content should see chapter 3 of this guide.
Amazon has only one other significant order management feature – reports. This can be accessed by the Download Order Reports link in Your Account. It’s possible to create a specific report based on type (item, orders, refunds, etc) and a specific date. This is the only way to view the orders placed within a user-specified time period.
Once the report’s settings are decided click on Request Report. Creating a report may take several minutes. When ready it will appear as a downloadable .csv file. A .csv file is a basic type of spreadsheet that can be opened by almost any spreadsheet application. It can even be opened with Notepad.
4.2 – Payments
Creating a payment option on Amazon is simple and is part of the order process the first time that a user buys anything from the site. As with placing orders themselves, this is not a topic I’ll cover here because of its simplicity.
You can visit your payment settings at any time using the Payments section in Your Account. Users generally don’t need to visit this section but it may be necessary to delete an expired payment option and add a new one.
Amazon re-verifies payment information every time that a user makes a purchase and will quickly alert users of payment that is unsuccessful. Orders will not go through automatically if a new payment option is placed using the Manage Payment Options menu. Instead, users have to go to Open Orders and verify payment that way.
4.3 – Addresses And 1-Click
Impulse shoppers can have their desires enabled with 1-Click. This is an old Amazon feature that lets users order more quickly. Strangely, the 1-Click feature is not managed under Payments. Instead users need to go down to Settings and find 1-Click Settings.
This actually opens the Address Book, which is where all addresses associated with an Amazon account are listed. A new Address can be added at any time using the white Enter A News Address button at the top of the page. Existing addresses can be edited using the edit buttons found on this page.
1-Click must be associated with one of these addresses to work. First, look for the yellow On/Off button on the right side of the page. If it says 1-Click is turned off, press it to turn it on. The account’s primary address will automatically be associated with 1-Click, but users can change it to any address that is desired.
4.4 – Shopping With Points
Certain credit and debit cards have rewards systems that give members points that translate to cash at certain stores; Amazon is one of them. American Express, Discover, Visa, Chase and Citibank all have points programs that can be translated to buying power on Amazon.
This option can be found by going to Your Account and opening Shop With Points. Any eligible cards that a user currently has associated with their Amazon account will already be listed and the partners that work with Amazon are shown at the bottom. The exact way points translate to Amazon credit depends on the card that a user has.
5.1 – Your Public Profile And Privacy
Users who buy from Amazon also create a profile automatically. The site, like any online store, wants to make sure that visitors have their eyes drawn to products they desire. The site also wants to create a community. If people come to Amazon to check reviews and find information about products it’s likely more people will buy.
You can view your public profile on Amazon, which lists your reviews, your wish list and any other public information, by going to Your Account, scrolling to Personalization (it’s the last section on the page) and then clicking the Your Public Profile link.
The information available by default is limited. Users can edit these settings by clicking Edit Your Profile in the upper right hand corner. Users can disclose their email address, birthday, and webpage, then enter both a biography and interests. It’s also possible to publicly share recently purchased items.
There’s no particular benefit to making this information public, however. It could be useful for users that want to share their Amazon profile instead of typing up a holiday wish list. Then again, these same users could just share a wish list and leave the profile out of it. Indeed, some of the information shared could be compromising in the hands of a clever hacker, so it’s wise to keep most information private.
5.2 – Viewing And Improving Recommendations
Amazon is constantly compiling a variety of recommendations based on each user’s past purchases and the items users have viewed. To see them, go to the Recommended For You section of Your Account or just check out the recommendations listed on the front page of Amazon.
Users who want to make recommendations more accurate can do this by visiting the Improve Your Recommendations page, which is listed under Personalization in Your Account. On this page it’s possible to view items purchased, items rated, items liked, and more. Users can then quickly rate these items (instead of writing a review) or exclude them from being used as the basis for more recommendations. There’s also a checkbox tucked in the left sidebar that will force Amazon to show the Kindle version of recommend books whenever they’re available.
Editing recommendations will make the largest difference for people who use Amazon to buy a wide variety of products. A wide variety of products can lead to a sprawling, unfocused recommendations list. Using the Improve Your Recommendations page will help Amazon tell the difference between products you want and products you need.
5.3 – Wish Lists And Beyond
Amazon’s Wish List feature lets users pick out items that they want, but don’t yet want to buy. I think most readers are already familiar with this and understanding it isn’t difficult. Whenever a user visits a product page they will see a prominent “Add To Wish List” button on the right. Clicking on it does what it says. Wish lists can be viewed or managed visiting Your Wish List in Your Account. It’s also possible to share a wish list by email, Facebook or Twitter.
There are three other less know variants of Wish List, however, all of which can be found under Personalization in Your Account.
Baby Registry is Amazon’s one-stop source for keeping tabs on items expecting parents need. Parents-to-be can go to the Baby Registry page to create the registry, which acts as a wish list for baby-related items. Items bought through a specific Baby Registry are automatically shipped to the parents who created it. There are a couple of extra benefits, as well. Some items may be discounted by 10% and the return window for items bought on the Baby Registry is extended to 90 days.
Wedding Registry is similar. Items purchased on the registry are automatically shipped to the happy couple. This registry doesn’t enjoy an extended return window or discount benefits, however.
Last Friends & Family Gifting, which may just be Amazon’s most useful little-known feature. It lets users create private wish lists containing gift ideas for other people. People can be added via Facebook or manually, and each person can be associated with various occasions like birthdays or holidays. Amazon will send an email a user-specified period of time before the occasion as a reminder that a gift needs to be purchased.
This person will also be added to a drop-down menu under the Add To Wish List button on every product page. That makes it possible to add gift ideas with just one click.
Amazon’s website is has decent functionality, yet there are a lot of things that can’t be done on it. Users can’t easily track price histories, set up price alerts, or compare prices with other sites. There are also a number of hardware products, both from Amazon and from others, that can be connected with Amazon’s services. Let’s have a look at what’s on offer.
6.1 – Must-Have Browser Extensions
A price history is one of the best tools a shopper can have while visiting Amazon. This simple graph can tell you if the price currently listed for an item is historically high or low. Some products experience little fluctuation, but others can rise and fall by as much as 50% within a few months.
The best price-tracking extension is The Camelizer, official extension of price-tracking site Camelcamelcamel. This handy tool can be used to view a comprehensive price history that shows the Amazon new retail price, the third-party new retail price and the lowest used offer available.
Another must-have extension is the Add To Wish List button. Amazon Wish Lists are universal and can be used to list items from any website, but doing this is not easy by default. This extension, which is available for both Chrome and Firefox, inserts a Wish List button on other sites.
Amazon fans that own a Kindle should absolutely check out the Push To Kindle extension for Chrome and Firefox. This extension lets users enter a URL and then “push” it to their Kindle with a single click. The web article will download to the Kindle and can be read later – even offline.
Firefox users may want to check out the Amazon Browser Apps extensions. This tool adds a navigation bar to the top of the browser which can be used to instantly access certain portions of Amazon, such as the wish list and daily deals, without actually opening the Amazon site. It’s great for product research and gift shopping.
6.2 – Price Tracking Websites
Tracking prices can also be accomplished through a website. Doing this is less convenient than using a browser extension, but websites usually have added utility that can’t be crammed in to a small extension.
The best website for price tracking is Camelcamelcamel. It’s a simple, easy-to-use site which has excellent graphs and supports not only Amazon but also Best Buy and Newegg. In addition to the graphs, the Camelcamelcamel website lets users set up price alerts. These alerts can be sent via email or Twitter.
Users who for some reason dislike that site should try The Tracktor. This alternative also includes price graphs and lets users set up price alerts. It doesn’t let users set up as many price alerts at once, however, and it only supports Amazon. The main reason to visit Tracktor is the “Movers” section, which lists items that have significantly dropped in price.
6.3 – Compatible Hardware
Amazon is more than a website. It’s a platform. Users who buy books on Amazon can access them on a number of other platforms. Here’s the hardware that can currently read Kindle books via an app.
- Any computer that can run Firefox/Chrome/Safari (via Kindle Cloud Reader). We also covered in another article how to setup Kindle Cloud Reader for offline book reading
- Windows XP/Vista/7/8 PC (via Kindle for PC software)
- Android tablets or smartphones (via the Kindle for Android app)
- iPhones, iPads and iPod Touch (via Kindle for iOS)
- Blackberry smartphones (via Kindle for Blackberry)
Besides Kindle, Amazon also offers users access to their music via Amazon MP3. Here are the platforms that can access that service.
- Any computer (via a web browser and the Amazon MP3 web app)
- Android tablets and smartphones (via the Amazon MP3 app)
- iPhones, iPads and iPod Touch (via Amazon Cloud Player)
- Blackberry smartphones (via the Amazon MP3 app)
Last, but not least, is Amazon’s streaming video services via Amazon Video and Amazon Prime. Here are the compatible devices.
- Any computer with a web browser (via the Amazon web page)
- Kindle Fire HD (via a built-in app)
- Apple iPad (via the Amazon Instant Video app)
- Roku (via a built-in app)
- Playstation 3 (via a built-in app)
- Xbox 360 (via a built-in app)
- Wii U (via a built-in app)
- Compatible Blu-Ray players and HDTVs (via a built-in app)
I hope that this guide has left you with a better understanding of Amazon. It’s a huge site, and not all of its features are intuitive. Managing digital content is, to be honest, way more complex than it should be. But it’s manageable once you figure out what all the different pages and web apps do.
Want to learn more? MakeUseOf has published a ton of articles about Amazon in the past. Check them out!
Guide Published: November 2012
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