View Full Version : Amazon Whispernet - What is it?


Nate the great
10-05-2007, 06:10 PM
All we know at present is that somehow this is what is used to download content to the Kindle.

I have found evidence in the Google Cache that we might be able to get a Kindle subscription to the Washington Post or the NYTimes. I think we already knew that.



If anyone finds anything more, please post it!

Nate the great
10-05-2007, 06:26 PM
BTW, credit for this find goes to member leandroide.

NatCh
10-05-2007, 06:28 PM
Dunno, but when I do a search for "Amazon Whispernet" on google, I'm getting a hit on www.samazon.co.uk on the URL

When I follow the hits there's no mention of whispernet on the linked pages, but they're definitely on the www.samazon.co.uk server. Wonder if that mean's anything to anyone?

Here's the full URL http://www.samazon.co.uk/tag/tag2

Nate the great
10-05-2007, 06:34 PM
Dunno, but when I do a search for "Amazon Whispernet" on google, I'm getting a hit on www.samazon.co.uk on the URL

When I follow the hits there's no mention of whispernet on the linked pages, but they're definitely on the www.samazon.co.uk server. Wonder if that mean's anything to anyone?

Here's the full URL http://www.samazon.co.uk/tag/tag2

Go back to that page. Hover your cursor over the WashPost thumbnail. Look at what it says. :)


Then do a little dance for joy, because it was posted on amazon.co.uk !!!!!!!!!!!

NatCh
10-05-2007, 07:35 PM
Ah, yes, so I see! And yeah, that's what I thought the .co.uk implied. :grin:

BKeeper
10-05-2007, 08:19 PM
I'd like to think this means EU distribution. But since it's just washPost
that's easy. I mean it's not like a book or something..

At least we know the hardware will be available in Europe.

(I know some would like to discus if that qualifies as Europe at all...) ;)

Anyway, the kindle just got very very interesting.

(but ohh they could still screw with the design)

Thanks guys, great catch!

NatCh
10-06-2007, 03:33 PM
I'd say that the fact that any of it is available in Europe strongly suggests that at least a good percentage of material will be. Otherwise, what would be the point in deploying the hardware at all? Add to that the fact that Mobipocket (a French subsidiary of Amazon) is the likely source of Kindle's base offerings, and it makes me think Europe isn't going to get left out of this one. That's going to be a tough shot for Sony, there, but they've had a year to pull their finger out on this one, so it shouldn't exactly be a shock to them. :shrug:

This also implies that the wireless isn't EVDO, doesn't it? I was thinking that EVDO wasn't implemented in the EU. That seems to corroborate the WiFi rumor we heard earlier. :beam:

Nate the great
10-06-2007, 04:05 PM
I'd say that the fact that any of it is available in Europe strongly suggests that at least a good percentage of material will be. Otherwise, what would be the point in deploying the hardware at all? Add to that the fact that Mobipocket (a French subsidiary of Amazon) is the likely source of Kindle's base offerings, and it makes me think Europe isn't going to get left out of this one. That's going to be a tough shot for Sony, there, but they've had a year to pull their finger out on this one, so it shouldn't exactly be a shock to them. :shrug:

This also implies that the wireless isn't EVDO, doesn't it? I was thinking that EVDO wasn't implemented in the EU. That seems to corroborate the WiFi rumor we heard earlier. :beam:

Fact: The ebooks are described as "Kindle Edition".
My conclusion: They might not be Mobipocket. If they are, they will likely not work on any device other than the one Kindle you own.

Fact: The ebooks are "automatically delivered by Amazon Whispernet".
My conclusion: The Kindle is more likely to have EVDO than Wifi.

Fact: There are no Google Cached pages on Amazon.co.uk that show "kindle edition".(There was one, but it was not a listing; it was a collection page of stuff some trainee or tester grabbed at random.)
My conclusion: It might not be available in the UK.



These are just my WAGs. I make no guarantee about the accuracy of the WAGs.

NatCh
10-06-2007, 04:16 PM
Fact: The ebooks are described as "Kindle Edition".
My conclusion: They might not be Mobipocket. If they are, they will likely not work on any device other than the one Kindle you own.I acknowledge that possibility, but I really don't think they'd bring out another format ... why bother buying Mobi in the first place if they're gonna do that? :shrug:

NatCh
10-06-2007, 04:17 PM
In any case, the fact that they do own mobi means they also own distribution rights in Europe -- what possible reason could they have for ignoring a market that they have rights to?

Hadrien
10-06-2007, 05:39 PM
They also say Amazon will pack some free offerings onto the device, like reference books, and offer customers a choice of subscriptions to feeds from major newspapers like The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and the French newspaper Le Monde.

This quote is from the NY Times article. Why would they offer a subscription for Le Monde, if the device is not available in France (and Europe in general) ?

Nate the great
10-06-2007, 06:08 PM
This quote is from the NY Times article. Why would they offer a subscription for Le Monde, if the device is not available in France (and Europe in general) ?

I think they mean Les Echoes, which has said that it will be available on the Kindle. But you are right, I goofed.

CommanderROR
10-06-2007, 06:56 PM
I was sprt of counting on it not being available in the EU...if they DO offer it here I'll be in real trouble because I know I'll want it and I also know I can't really afford it anytime soon...maybe I should start asking for donations or see whether I have some stuff around that I can sell...:smash:

I think it would be a great business move for Amazon to offer the Kindle and all ebooks worldwide. Amazon.de has not shown any signs of that, but since it's e-content it might be that EU customers will then just have to go to amazon.com to order ebooks for the Kindle...which would be cool for some europeans since the $ to rate is very favourable...:smart:

Nate the great
10-07-2007, 10:15 PM
Fact: The ebooks are described as "Kindle Edition".
My conclusion: They might not be Mobipocket. If they are, they will likely not work on any device other than the one Kindle you own.



I think the "kindle edition" is the AZW file format. I got this from the manual.

Of course, I could be wrong.

Nate the great
10-08-2007, 07:28 AM
Some now say "available for pre-order" !

CommanderROR
10-08-2007, 08:54 AM
Nice find...

But I certainly hope the AZW format is not real...what a bother it would be to have yet another format flying round when I finally got used to mobipocket...

Bob Russell
10-08-2007, 09:07 AM
I'm guessing that AZW is probably just a wrapper around an existing e-book format - MobiPocket.

Nate the great
10-08-2007, 09:40 AM
Nice find...

But I certainly hope the AZW format is not real...what a bother it would be to have yet another format flying round when I finally got used to mobipocket...

The manual says that you can buy content directly from the Kindle. I bet that content is in AZW format.

So long as the Kindle also reads Mobipocket, we can live with whatever other formats Amazon puts on it.

CommanderROR
10-08-2007, 10:10 AM
I guess you have a point there...now the real question is what this "Whispernet" is all about...and whether it will really have EV-DO (and thus be of limited use in Europe) or WiFi and whether it will come bundled with some kind of subscription for EV-DO or books or whatever...the Frankfurt Book-Fair is starting soon, I hope we'll know more in a few days...

CTH
10-08-2007, 01:22 PM
I googled some,
http://www.amazon.com/GENITOPE-INITIATES-TRIAL-EVALUATE-LEUKEMIA/dp/B000F3UGMY
"includes free wireless delivery via Amazon Whispernet" "Available for download now."
Other intresting quotes
"Auto-delivered wirelessly to Kindle via Amazon Whispernet." Auto-deliverd? Can you only buy from the kindle then? Sounds a bit stupid... But if it is free it would prob be allright.
And notice that the book is in HTML format...

Hadrien
10-08-2007, 01:26 PM
I googled some,
http://www.amazon.com/GENITOPE-INITIATES-TRIAL-EVALUATE-LEUKEMIA/dp/B000F3UGMY
"includes free wireless delivery via Amazon Whispernet" "Available for download now."
Other intresting quotes
"Auto-delivered wirelessly to Kindle via Amazon Whispernet." Auto-deliverd? Can you only buy from the kindle then? Sounds a bit stupid... But if it is free it would prob be allright.
And notice that the book is in HTML format...

Might be something similar to what iRex is using. Some sort of inbox where Amazon can safely deposit the content, and the next time that you sync your Kindle, you download the content on your device.

Nate the great
10-08-2007, 01:29 PM
I googled some,
http://www.amazon.com/GENITOPE-INITIATES-TRIAL-EVALUATE-LEUKEMIA/dp/B000F3UGMY
"includes free wireless delivery via Amazon Whispernet" "Available for download now."
Other intresting quotes
"Auto-delivered wirelessly to Kindle via Amazon Whispernet." Auto-deliverd? Can you only buy from the kindle then? Sounds a bit stupid... But if it is free it would prob be allright.
And notice that the book is in HTML format...

RTM, dude, RTM. And then go read the Wiki, and the other threads on this forum.

According to the manual, one way to get content is to buy it from Amazon while using the Kindle. Another way to get content is to load it yourself, either onto a SD card or direct from PC/Mac to Kindle via USB.

NatCh
10-08-2007, 01:53 PM
A point, Nate, but it's probably best to keep in mind that the manual we have is about a year old, and things may have changed in the mean-time. :shrug:

I don't plan to rely too heavily on that manual, at any rate. :unafraid:

delphidb96
10-08-2007, 04:19 PM
I think the "kindle edition" is the AZW file format. I got this from the manual.

Of course, I could be wrong.

Manual? You have a *manual*?!?!? That means you have a Kindle! Give details!

Derek

NatCh
10-08-2007, 04:28 PM
That means you have a Kindle!No it doesn't. :unafraid:

It means that he's read this thread (http://www.mobileread.com/forums/showthread.php?t=7569) from last year when the details leaked out via the FCC site. I believe the manual is still posted in that thread, but it's a year old, hence my comment. :nice:

Yup, the manual is still posted there (http://www.mobileread.com/forums/showthread.php?p=37735#post37735). How funny, I'd forgotten I was the one who actually posted it. :D

CommanderROR
10-08-2007, 04:29 PM
Well, this is actually one of the few devices where most people read the manual before they used the device...probably since the manual was leaked (on Engadget a year ago) but the device so far was not... ;)

Nate the great
10-08-2007, 04:44 PM
Manual? You have a *manual*?!?!? That means you have a Kindle! Give details!

Derek

No, if I had a Kindle, you'd already know about it. Everyone would know about it. I'd shout it from the rooftops. I'd post a clip on Youtube. I'd take a few hundred photos, and post them here.

I only wish I had one.

Lemurion
10-08-2007, 05:36 PM
If we can trust the manual, as of a year ago the plan was to support .prc and .mobi files, so for those who want mobipocket support there's still hope.

Nate the great
10-08-2007, 06:53 PM
I have been doing some thinking on the results of the google search site:amazon.com "kindle edition" .

http://www.google.com/search?num=100&hl=en&client=firefox-a&rls=org.mozilla%3Aen-US%3Aofficial&hs=qYS&q=site%3Aamazon.com+kindle+edition&btnG=Search

There are now 5,670 pages in the Google cache that have the words "kindle edition" on them. It's a very diverse collection of books. There are more technical manuals and textbooks than I have ever seen outside of PDF format. This by itself could make the Kindle the market leader.

HarryT
10-09-2007, 03:05 AM
There are more technical manuals and textbooks than I have ever seen outside of PDF format. This by itself could make the Kindle the market leader.

I don't follow you. The technical book market is far smaller than the fiction market. When I get on a train or a bus, everyone around me is reading novels, not technical books. I suspect that it's a market sector which is of relatively little importance to a bookreader.

Nate the great
10-09-2007, 07:24 AM
I don't follow you. The technical book market is far smaller than the fiction market. When I get on a train or a bus, everyone around me is reading novels, not technical books. I suspect that it's a market sector which is of relatively little importance to a bookreader.

The textbook market is really the one that has me excited. College students must buy the textbook every semester (that is, unless we are sure we don't need it). The combination of not having to carry 15kg of books around but still have them with me is very attractive. Plus, a lot of students are spending Mommy's and Daddy's money, not their own.

It is a potential market that no other device has touched.

HarryT
10-09-2007, 07:40 AM
But is a device with a 6" screen really suited for the purpose of displaying what are, presumably, PDFs? We all know the problems that can cause! That really is the one area where a device with a larger screen is a clear winner. It's an area in which, for example, the iLiad excels over the Sony Reader.

Nate the great
10-09-2007, 08:06 AM
But is a device with a 6" screen really suited for the purpose of displaying what are, presumably, PDFs? We all know the problems that can cause! That really is the one area where a device with a larger screen is a clear winner. It's an area in which, for example, the iLiad excels over the Sony Reader.

The ebooks in question are described as Kindle editions, which can be automatically delivered to the Kindle. I do not expect them to be PDFs. I expect them to be AZW (assuming that is the Kindle format).

You are correct, though, in that they may not be well formatted for the Kindle's screen.

HarryT
10-09-2007, 08:17 AM
Oh well, we'll know soon enough. As you say, it'll certainly be good news if a broad selection of textbooks is made available as eBooks.

Lemurion
10-09-2007, 09:01 AM
I think the advantage of the textbook market is that while it's fairly low volume it's also a fairly high-dollar market. There are almost 17 million college students in the US, most of whom spend hundreds of dollars on textbooks each year; if Amazon can get each of them to spend $100 on textbooks in Kindle Editions, that would be over one and a half billion dollars a year.

The average student spends a lot more than $50 a semester on textbooks.

nekokami
10-09-2007, 09:11 AM
If they can get the publishers to significantly drop prices on eTextbooks, the cost of the Kindle could be easily justified. Here's hoping....

HarryT
10-09-2007, 09:19 AM
I suspect that, unfortunately, textbooks are always going to be inherently more more expensive to produce than novels. With a novel, all the publisher really has to do is have it proofread to make sure that it's written in reasonably OK English. With a textbook, on the other hand, they generally (at least in my field - physics textbooks) send the proof out to a group of people knowledgeable in the field to ensure that what it says is actually correct, which is far more work than merely ensuring that it's written in grammatically correct English. Textbooks generally also have lots of diagrams, figures, illustrations, etc, all of which push the cost up.

I don't think we're ever going to see the advent of the $10 textbook, unfortunately.

Lemurion
10-09-2007, 09:53 AM
Actually a textbook price drop for Kindle editions could be quite doable-- not enough to likely make them cheap, but enough to make a difference in the price. Most have fairly small print runs and are large illustrated books, which means the physical production cost is higher than for novels. Kindle editions could work based on the savings possible in that area. If someone can get six textbooks for sixty or sixty-five dollars each rather than a hundred, that's a serious saving.

CommanderROR
10-09-2007, 10:24 AM
I agree. However, with a small screen those "large illustrated" books might look a bit...off...and the lack of lolour could actually also be a problem here.

Alisa
10-09-2007, 02:05 PM
I agree. However, with a small screen those "large illustrated" books might look a bit...off...and the lack of lolour could actually also be a problem here.

I think in general the reader devices aren't quite to the point of being ideal for the academic market, but something like the Info Pad concept would've been a godsend to me when I was in school. To be able to annotate and excerpt text, carry around all my books and not have to deal with those thick photocopied bundles of journal articles and chapters from out-of-print books that I had for every class would've been invaluable. I constantly found myself without the book I wanted at the moment because I had to guess every morning what I would need that day. My backpack could only hold so much. If it could do voice recording and let me take lecture notes on it, that would be even better. I would've happily paid iRex prices or more for such a thing.

VillageReader
10-09-2007, 02:24 PM
The average student spends a lot more than $50 a semester on textbooks.

I trust it was a typo and you meant $500. I spent over $100 a quarter - and that was in the mid 70's.

Lemurion
10-09-2007, 02:33 PM
I trust it was a typo and you meant $500. I spent over $100 a quarter - and that was in the mid 70's.

I meant to say $50, meaning that Amazon would only have to capture a fraction of any given student's textbook purchasing dollar with Kindle to make a large amount of money. I know students spend about $500 a semester now-- and if they spent one tenth of that on Kindle Editions then Amazon would make a billion and a half dollars a year in gross sales.

Alisa
10-09-2007, 05:28 PM
I meant to say $50, meaning that Amazon would only have to capture a fraction of any given student's textbook purchasing dollar with Kindle to make a large amount of money. I know students spend about $500 a semester now-- and if they spent one tenth of that on Kindle Editions then Amazon would make a billion and a half dollars a year in gross sales.

I easily spent more than that each semester on photocopied "readers" (and this was over a decade ago). They were spiral-bound collections of articles and sometimes chapters of out-of-print books that the professor had produced at the local copy shops. This is the sort of thing that would be so easy to do in electronic format.

ischeriad
10-09-2007, 07:24 PM
Just today I bought a reader for a seminar in Older German Literature containing two copied primary texts.

It has about 30 double sided pages, glue binding. The copy quality is not great, apparently its already a copy-from-copy. The original book pages have been scaled down, to fit up to four original pages on one page of A4 paper, so the page/font size is about that of a 6" reader. The illustrations are pathetic, copy of a copy of a reproduction of a wood carving of the 15th century...

Several people have occupied their time with these: Someone had to duplicate it, someone to bind it, and each of the probably 15 students who take this seminar have to walk to the secratary and buy one. The price is 3 EUR.

Edit: For the records, I have to buy books for about 65 EUR at the beginning of this semester.

Alisa
10-09-2007, 08:31 PM
Just today I bought a reader for a seminar in Older German Literature containing two copied primary texts.

It has about 30 double sided pages, glue binding. The copy quality is not great, apparently its already a copy-from-copy. The original book pages have been scaled down, to fit up to four original pages on one page of A4 paper, so the page/font size is about that of a 6" reader. The illustrations are pathetic, copy of a copy of a reproduction of a wood carving of the 15th century...

Several people have occupied their time with these: Someone had to duplicate it, someone to bind it, and each of the probably 15 students who take this seminar have to walk to the secratary and buy one. The price is 3 EUR.

Edit: For the records, I have to buy books for about 65 EUR at the beginning of this semester.

Wow. When I used to buy such things, they were more like $20/each. I wonder if you get a better price because your university is selling it to you. We had to go to a private shop that had photocopying services to purchase our readers. The professors would provide them with the materials and they would put the book together.

ischeriad
10-09-2007, 08:46 PM
Wow. When I used to buy such things, they were more like $20/each. I wonder if you get a better price because your university is selling it to you. We had to go to a private shop that had photocopying services to purchase our readers. The professors would provide them with the materials and they would put the book together.

Yes, the readers are made inhouse, there is a printing plant (if this is the correct term for Druckerei) in the university.
The most expensive (if I'm allowed to say so, given your experience) reader I remember was about 8 EUR, I think they stick quite closely to the actual production cost.

But, as I said, the quality is often not so good, and it would be very nice to have all these texts in electronic form. There is a lot of paper to be saved, too.

edsohsmith
10-10-2007, 05:00 AM
I was a molecular biology major. I think most semesters I spent between US $400 and $600 on textbooks.

NatCh
10-10-2007, 10:54 AM
I was a molecular biology major. I think most semesters I spent between US $400 and $600 on textbooks.Engineering here, $400~$500 per semester for me in the early 90's

DaleDe
10-10-2007, 11:27 AM
Engineering here, $400~$500 per semester for me in the early 90's

In the US the professors supplement their income by writing text books that the students have to buy. The universities support this practice so no cheap books. They will typically revise the book every one in a while to cut off the used book market.

Dale

ischeriad
10-10-2007, 07:31 PM
The most readers and books I have to buy are primary texts. Luckily, in Older German Literature there are not many new primary texts to enter the scene :grin2:. I don't envy law students for example, who have to keep their collection of laws current, which are constantly changing...

nekokami
10-14-2007, 09:00 PM
Educational research, here. I spent about US$120 this semester on textbooks for two classes. It would have been more if I'd had to pay for bound photocopied journal articles, which both of my classes have as required readings, but they're being distributed to us as PDFs instead. I don't print these -- I read them (and make notes) on my iLiad. :)