Amazon has just announced a new Kindle service called Kindle for the Web, which allows Web sites to embed a preview of the first chapter of any Kindle book anywhere on the Web. Kindle for the Web is essentially a widget that can be emdeded on any Web site with a “Get Kindle Edition” button linking back to Amazon. The widget can be called up from enabled Kindle book pages on Amazon by clicking the “Read first chapter FREE” button and then embeded like a YouTube video using another button inside the widget. Here’s how AmazonEncore author Karen McQuestion is using the service on her blog.
So far, Amazon is only pitching this as a promotional tool to offer samples of Kindle books, but it’s a fairly small leap to imagine the service becoming a portal to “Kindle in the Cloud,” enabling Kindle customers to access their purchased libraries anywhere they have Internet access. If Amazon does offer that kind of access, it would have a considerable leg up when Google finally launches its browser-based Google Editions.
(Publisher's Weekly Morning Report, September 28, 2010 - Craig Morgan Teicher)