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What is Kindle cloud, exactly?

Kindle cloud library vs. Kindle Cloud Reader
Photo: Free-Photos, Pixabay

Kindle cloud is not the same as Kindle Cloud Reader. Read on to learn what they are and how they relate to each other.

Many confused readers reach us asking for help with “Kindle cloud.” At first, I thought they want to learn more about Kindle Cloud Reader, but it turns out it’s not exactly what they mean.

Just like with “unlimited” or “prime,” Amazon is confusing customers by using the same word to describe multiple – sometimes completely different – services and features. Just look: “Amazon Cloud Services,” “Amazon Cloud Cam,” or “Kindle Cloud Reader.”

Unfortunately, the last example is far from being accurate. “Kindle Cloud Reader” should be renamed to “Kindle Web Reader” as it’s designed to let you access and read Kindle books in a web browser.

What is a cloud service?

Let’s start from defining what “cloud” means.

Millions of people use Google Drive, Dropbox, or iCloud. They are cloud services. They store your content “in the cloud” – on remote servers that you can access from any device the moment after you sign in to your account.

Amazon stores your digital content in the cloud, as well. Any Kindle book or comic you buy in the Kindle Store, any personal file that’s compatible with Kindle format, but also apps and videos – they are all stored on Amazon servers.

A clear benefit of having all your digital content in the cloud is that you have it synced between all devices and apps that are connected with your Amazon account.

What is “Kindle cloud,” then?

Amazon doesn’t have an official name for user’s library of digital content. However, “Kindle cloud” or “Kindle cloud library” are the most natural and accurate phrases to describe user’s Kindle ebooks that are stored on Amazon servers – opposite to the ones downloaded to a Kindle or Kindle app.

Therefore, many users (including me) use these phrases informally to describe their personal library of Kindle content that can be accessed and synced via the internet.

How Kindle cloud works

What’s the difference between Kindle cloud and Kindle Cloud Reader?

As you see, Kindle cloud is a natural way to describe user’s Kindle ebooks stored online for sync and backup purposes.

Kindle Cloud Reader is nothing more than a way to access these ebooks from a web browser.

How to access Kindle cloud library?

There are four ways you can access and manage content from your Kindle cloud library.

1. Via Amazon website

Go to Amazon and sign in with your login and password. Then, go to “Your Account” and select “Manage Your Content and Devices.”

Here, you will be able to see all books, magazines, videos, and apps you have collected so far.

Although a number of operations is quite limited, you can send a Kindle ebook to a connected device, or add it to one of your collections.

2. Via Kindle e-reader

When you are in the “Home” screen, go to “Library,” and tap “All” to see books in your personal Kindle library on Amazon.

Tap a book cover to download it to the Kindle instantly.

3. Via Kindle app

It works the same way in the Kindle app for iPhone/iPad or Android.

Go to a “Library” section, and tap “All” to preview your Kindle library in the cloud. Tap a book to start downloading it to the app.

4. Via Kindle Cloud Reader

There we have a major source of confusion. Kindle Cloud Reader is nothing more than a website you can open in your web browser, such as Safari, Chrome, or Firefox.

Simply, type read.amazon.com in a url bar, and sign in with your Amazon credentials.

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