Amazon has been making moves left and right lately. Since the launch of the Kindle 2 in late February of this year, they’ve rolled out a number of interesting developments, including the release of the Kindle for iPhone app, the acquisition of popular e-book reader Stanza for the iPhone/iPod touch platform, and the recent release of the large-format Kindle DX. Today, they kept the hit train rolling with an update to their web-based Kindle Store that gives it a more iPhone-friendly formatting.
Now clicking “Get Books” in the Kindle iPhone app will take you to a shopping site nicely optimized for Mobile Safari, so you don’t have to squint and swipe around just to give Amazon your money. It definitely improves the user experience of book shopping, but I think that compared with some other iPhone-optimized site designs based on similar concepts (i.e., deviantArt‘s mobile site), they could still make further improvements to make the experience even more pleasant. Why not take a cue from the company you just acquired and build an integrated catalog browser into your app? Stanza will probably be keen to help you out, now that you own them.
Kindle for iPhone is the top e-book app in the U.S. store, having overtaken longtime leader Stanza prior to their purchase of the much smaller company. It’s still unclear what their specific aims were in acquiring Stanza, since they’ve yet to either offer Kindle content in the app, or give Kindle for iPhone users access to the titles they may have in their Stanza library. One thing is clear, though — Amazon is serious about the iPhone platform, even though they offer a competing device. Looks like they want their cake, and they want to eat it, too. We’ll see how that works out for them.