Amazon has quietly launched a web based reader for their most popular store, the Kindle Store (Amazon PR). Thus beating pay structure restriction. Essentially, Apple’s terms required publishers like Amazon’s Kindle Store to pay 30% of its fee to Apple if the user buys anything within it’s iOS app, which was ridiculous for publishers. Amazon earlier this year beat this system by removing its Kindle Store link from the native app. Now they have launched a web app to further beat Apple’s pay structure.
Developed from the ground up in HTML5 and compatible on both Mac/PC (Safari and Chrome) and the iPad’s Safari browser. The app joins the Financial Times and others who have all launched web apps in the wake of Apple’s pay wall structure. It would definitely be interesting to see how many others will join Amazon and the others in this new HTML5 experience.
While several magazine publishers, such as Conde Nast have already bowed to Apple and have joined the system by paying Apple 30% of every purchase a user makes from within their magazine apps. Conde Nast publishes Wired, New Yorkers and other popular magazines.
John Gruber, on Daring Fireball nicely sums it up
I wouldn’t go so far as to say it feels like a native app. Cloud Reader works great on the iPad by the standards of web apps, but the native Kindle iPad app is far more responsive, and has a far less cluttered interface simply because it isn’t surrounded by an extra layer of Safari UI chrome. The native app is more immersive.
I agree with John, the web app is smooth but not as good as the native iPad app. Also, another Firefox (and IE) are not supported by the web app. Sad to see Firefox lagging behind on HTML5. The iPhone app is also not supported.