Kindle FAQ

The Kindle team over at’s Kindle discussion forums have posted this FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) up on the message boards. They answer a lot of questions if your interested in purchasing a Kindle, or if your interested in learning about the Kindle and how it works.

In an effort to make finding information about Kindle as easy as possible, the Kindle team has created this forum for you to post Kindle-related questions. Due to the volume of responses, we will not be able to reply to each individual one, but every effort will be made to address the most commonly asked questions and get you answers. Our goal is to satisfy your curiosity, make you an informed consumer, optimize your experience as a Kindle user, and learn how we can make that experience even better.

If you need a more immediate response, please email customer service at [email protected] or use the “Contact Us” feature to speak directly to a Kindle representative located here:


We would like to start by pointing you to our Kindle Support page, where you can find frequently asked questions (FAQs) and guides on using Kindle:

Here are some answers to a few common questions we’ve found across the forums.

Q: Is it possible to copy text from kindle to paste in other documents?
A: Yes. All of the bookmarks, highlights, notes, and clippings you have made while reading content on Kindle are saved in a “My Clippings” file which you can find in your Home screen. The contents of the “My Clippings” file are available to read later or to copy to your computer if you want to further edit or send them to someone else. The “My Clippings” file is stored as a TXT file so you can easily import it into one of your computer applications using the provided USB cable or an SD card. For more information on clipping text, visit our help pages:

Q: When can we read PDFs, please?
A: PDF document conversion is experimental. The experimental category represents the features we are working on to enhance the Kindle experience even further. Due to PDF’s fixed layout format, some complex PDF files might not format correctly on your Kindle. Each Kindle has a unique e-mail address, allowing you and your contacts to send PDF attachments for conversion into a Kindle compatible format. For more information on personal document conversion, visit our help pages:

Q: Can I buy a Kindle book, and, instead of delivering to my Kindle reader, push to my friend’s Kindle reader as a gift?
Q: How can I read books that I legally own on my different kindles? Can I? Should I be able to?
A: At this time, you cannot share or give your Kindle books to Kindles that are not associated with your account. If you are the owner of multiple Kindles, or have multiple Kindles registered to your account (i.e wife, husband), your books can be re-downloaded to each of these Kindles, up to a limit of 6 Kindles. Subscriptions to periodicals can only be downloaded to one registered Kindle.

Q: When is the Kindle going to be available elsewhere in the world? If I buy one in the US, can I use it when traveling abroad?
A: Currently, Kindle is only available in the US. Whispernet wireless delivery is also only available in the US (see a coverage map here: But Kindle can also be used without activating the wireless feature while you are traveling outside the US or wireless service area. All content you purchase from the Kindle Store is saved to Your Media Library on This allows you to download your books, newspapers and magazines to your computer and transfer items via Kindle’s USB connection. For more information about moving content to and from your Kindle, visit our help pages:

Q: with 91,000+ volumes to choose from how come only 1 book by John Grisham? Are some top authors not giving rights for kindle to market them?
A: We are constantly working with both publishers and authors to improve our selection of titles available in the Kindle store, and it is possible that we can use your feedback to help expand the available selection. I encourage you to check the Amazon Kindle store again at a later date to see if the item is available:

Q: I know Kindle allows you to adjust [text] to an extent, but I from the illustrations I can’t determine how it would really appear. Any information on this?
A: Kindle offers six different font sizes which correspond approximately to the following Microsoft Word standard font sizes:
1 = 7pt
2 = 9pt
3 = 11 pt
4 = 14 pt
5 = 17 pt
6 = 20 pt

Q: What’s the USB cable for? I’m wondering if you can’t just hook it up to your computer and drag files…?
A: If you are traveling outside of a wireless area, you can use the USB cord to copy files from your computer to read on Kindle. All content you purchase from the Kindle Store is saved to Your Media Library on This allows you to download your books, newspapers and magazines to your computer and transfer items via Kindle’s USB connection. You can also use the USB connection with your computer to transfer personal files. Your Kindle can natively read the following file types: documents in text (.txt), and Amazon Kindle (.azw), and unprotected Mobipocket books (.prc, .mobi), Audible Audio books (.aa), MP3 Music files (.mp3).

Lastly, you can e-mail attachments to be converted and then e-mailed back to your computer, which you can then transfer to your Kindle. The following file formats can be converted via e-mail and viewed on your Kindle: unprotected Microsoft Word (.DOC), Structured HTML (.HTML, .HTM), JPEG (.JPEG, .JPG), GIF (.GIF), PNG (.PNG), BMP (.BMP). Conversion of PDF files (.PDF) is experimental. For more information on using Kindle with your computer, please visit our help pages:

Q: How do I read in the dark after my partner has gone to bed?
A: eInk does not use a backlight, which allows us to give Kindle the appearance and readability of printed paper, even in bright sunlight. Customers who want to read at night can use any form of bedside lamp or purchase the Kindle’s reading light accessory here:

Q: What if you already have a subscription to paper magazines such as Time or Newsweek? If I wanted to read it on the Kindle, would I also have to pay additional to read it on Kindle?
A: Kindle Editions of periodicals are formatted and optimized to read on Kindle. At this time, Kindle Edition subscriptions are sold separately from the publications’ related online and/or physical versions.
You can view and order the Kindle Edition of the New York Times directly from the Kindle Store or from our online store here:

Q: How many times are you allowed to download a particular book to your kindle? For instance if I run out of room (in the off chance this happens), I delete a book to make room for another book, and later on decide I want to read that book again, how many times can I go back to the website and get that book back onto the Kindle?
A: All of your Kindle books are automatically stored on in Your Media Library. So, you can remove books from Kindle’s internal memory (for example, to free up space and/or organize your Home screen) and re-download them again – as many times as you want. You can do all this directly from your Kindle using Content Manager. For more information on moving and removing content, visit our help pages:

Suggestion from a customer (Thank you!):
A number of people have complained that it’s impossible to close the flap of the Kindle’s cover without pressing one of the navigation buttons. I’ve found an easy solution for this: I simply put my Kindle to sleep before closing the cover. To do this, simply press Alt+AA as though you were waking it from sleep. (I wonder how many other undocumented features we’re going to discover!)

Q: Will the kiindle be able to play audio books or is this in the works for future?
A: With Kindle, you are able to download and enjoy thousands of audiobooks from Due to their file size, audiobooks are downloaded to your PC over your existing Internet connection and then transferred to Kindle using the included USB 2.0 cable. Listen via Kindle’s speaker or plug in your headphones for private listening.

Q: Can I read kindle books on my laptop?
A: Kindle books, newspapers, magazines and blogs are formatted to be optimized for reading on the Kindle. You will not be able to read these Kindle (.azw) files on your PC.

Q: Where can I search for and find books for my Kindle on Amazon?
A: We built a Kindle Store both on the Kindle device and on the website at For those Kindle buyers waiting for your shipment, you can get started building your library by purchasing content from the Kindle Store on the website (much like you’d find and buy a physical book on Amazon). Your Kindle content will be ready to read right out of the box.

Q: What is the Kindle’s return policy?
A: You can return Kindle for a full refund within 30 days. Click here to get more info on our return policy:

Q: What do I need to know about purchasing Kindle as a gift for someone else?
A: You can designate a gift purchase when you are going through the checkout process on Amazon. Designating your Kindle purchase as a gift ensures that the device is not automatically registered to your account, which means that purchases from the Kindle Store made by the gift recipient will not be charged to you, and prices for the Kindle purchase will not appear on the packing slip. When the gift recipient opens Kindle and turns it on for the first time, he or she will need to register Kindle to an active account.

Q: What are wireless features and corresponding charges? So, are there any other charges beyond what I pay for books, newspapers, magazines and blogs?
A: Here’s a breakdown:
– Shopping and downloading from the Kindle Store: FREE
– Wireless delivery via e-mail of personal documents to Kindle: ($.10 per attached document).
– Experimental Basic Web: This feature is currently FREE while under development.
– Experimental NowNow: This feature is currently FREE while under development.

Q: What’s NowNow?
A: (from a customer review) You pose a question and hit submit. Within a few minutes, you get several responses – for free sent to your Kindle. This was extremely helpful when I was away from a computer and just needed a quick answer. This was actually easier than googling because I got three very good answers for every question that I asked.

Q: I’m not clear on what file formats the Kindle supports and where charges apply for conversion . .?
A: (from Computerworld)The Kindle can read only four text-document file formats: .AZW (Kindle-specific), .TXT, .MOBI and .PRC. In addition, every Kindle gets its own e-mail address for receiving Amazon-converted Word, HTML, TXT, JPEG, GIF, PNG, and BMP files for 10 cents per document. You send the original to your Kindle’s address and your device receives the converted document (only e-mail addresses you authorize can send to your Kindle).

Source: Kindle Discussion Forums

29 thoughts on “Kindle FAQ

  1. Pingback: Kindle FAQ | The Kindle Report

  2. My mother has profound hearing loss and is contemplating a new hearing aid. The doctor suggested reading a book while listening to it on audio tape would greatly accelerate her adapting to the new hearing aids. Is the Kindle capable of displaying text and playing the audio simultaneously?

  3. I am wondering if the Kindle can be used abroad and internationally? Do all the features work abroad? I am living and studying in Mexico and I am interested in buying the kindle so I can get my textbooks at a better price using the kindle instead of buying the hard copy. Can I request books to be put on kindle and have them put on kindle? I am trying to decide if this device would be beneficial for a student like myself that is doing my Master’s abroad. Thank you.

  4. My new Kindle (2 months) is frozen up with a book page on the screen and I can’t get it to respond to commands. Can you help?
    w bessent

  5. Try to force it to power off (hold the power switch for long time and see if it will power back on.
    If it doesn’t work I believe warranty is your best friend. It rocks by the way.

  6. My 88 year old Dad’s Kindle isn’t syncing up with new daily NYT – he really relies on this for his news and is frustrated. I’ve tried syncing up, turning wireless off and on. any other suggestions that can get this to work?

  7. I saw the question about downloading audio books to a Kindle from an established site for that. Can audio books be loaded from the discs themselves via a computer?

  8. You can rip audio books from CDs to MP3 and upload these files to Kindle. However you’ll have very poor navigation experience. Since you can only move forward one track and can’t see which track is playing.
    There may be some tool to convert MP3 to audiobook native format but I don’t know about it.

  9. Sorry to be dense but I’m having problems understanding what to expect from my new kindle and how much I am charged for using it. I live in the U.S. and am leaving for the UK and Egypt in a few days. If I buy kindle books before I leave the US are they not on my Kindle? If not, when I want to read them do I have to pay an additional fee if I am outside of the US? I read somewhere there is a $1.99 fee for loading books I have already purchased. Surely this can’t mean what I think it means. I bought this Kindle especially because I travel, and I wouldn’t be willing to pay more than the cost of the book itself.

  10. I’ve never posted before, and yet when I try to post now I’m told I’ve already posted this question. Help.

  11. Mary,
    If you open the book on your Kindle – that means that it’s on it. There is will be no need to download it when you abroad and pay 1.99 charge.
    So before leaving just purchase all the books that you want and make sure that you’ve opened at least the first page of all of them this will give you 100% confidence that the books are on the device and you’ll need not download them when you are outside of the US.

  12. If I install the new Kindle reader on boh my laptop and my desktop can I alternete where I read a book from, or must I purchase a copy for each cpu?

  13. Will I be able to download ebooks from my public library to the Kindle? Thanks.
    Also, can Gutenberg files be downloaded onto the Kindle?


  14. @robert,
    yes, if your local library offers digital books there is almost certainly a way to get them on your kindle.

    how easy or hard it is depends on what formats your local library offers.

    even epub (which keeps getting trotted out as something the kindle doesn’t support) can be converted into something the kindle does support.

  15. Hi, I have just very recently brought the kindle for my mum as a birthday present, and before i purchased it i was under the impression that alot of the books were free, when in actual fact alot of them are more expensive than your avergae second hand book. As so far the books my mum enjoys to read have all been £8+. Am i looking in the wrong place for books? Where can i find some free downloads? Thanks.

  16. What happens if I drop my Kindle or accidentally destroy it some other way? Do I lose all the books I’ve stored on it?

  17. I am a TOTAL novice and am wanting to purchase a specific book for a family member for Christmas but I am at a loss for how in the world I would do that? Do I create an Amazon account for myself, then buy the Kindle book and she then can access it from her account (download the book from your site)? I do not want a gift card but a particular book I had in mind…

  18. My wife is planning on buying me a Kindle; she has one already. I understand that we can use the same Amazon account and share books. Her Kindle says Shirley’s Kindle at the top. Can I change it to put my name of the top of mine if it is ordered from her account so we can share books?

  19. Steve,

    You can change name of your Kindle device via device settings (press menu button and select settings) regardless of the account it’s on. You can have multiple Kindles on your account and share books.

  20. My mom bought my dad a Kindle for Christmas this year. I want to buy him a book for it (not a gift card, a specific book) and have it pre-loaded on his Kindle ready to go.

    Is this possible? If so, HOW?

    Thank you!

  21. leslie,

    You can gift a specific book, but you can’t have it pre-loaded, unless you have access to his amazon account. It will appear in archived items and he’ll have to initiate the download himself. See here for details: Gifting Kindle Books

  22. Can I put photos in the Kindle? If so is there a charge for transferring them to the Kindle? Will the Kindle sync to Itunes?

  23. My kindle froze on the screensaver page today- and only sections of that as it is. Buttons are unresponsive, I tried to do a cold boot (holding the power button over for 15 seconds) and nothing at all seems to help.It’s just got a ragged, torn looking section of Olde English. Chaucer, maybe? I wasn’t in the middle of reading or any other Kindle-related activity when it froze. For the love of me being stuck in the miiddle of a chapter, please help!

    P.S. The tried-and-true usage of WD40 and duct tape doesn’t really apply here. Nowhere to put the WD40!
    Angela Suschena 775-241-2019

  24. I have recently purchased a Kindle and bought a book but cannot find it anywhere on my Kindle? My Kindle is registered to me.

  25. How do I load a book that has been downloaded to my computer into my Kindle. I did it last week but now can’t find my instructions that I wrote for myself.

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