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back to article Amazon lends e-books free to Prime subscribers

Amazon’s UK wing is now a lending library, albeit a private one exclusive to folk willing to cough up £49 a year. Yes, Amazon Prime subscribers with Kindles can now borrow any of 200,000 e-books for no charge other than their annual Prime sub. They can pick no more than one book a month, but there’s no digital equivalent of the …

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Slightly longer period

Well, yes, you can get free 'Super-Saver' delivery. Which is fine for some things. But if it's a large or fragile item, that usually means that for no extra charge some bloke from "Craptacular Delivery Organisation" will drop-kick it over the wall and into your next-door-neighbour's pond for you rather than actually deliver it to your door.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Slightly longer period

Unfortunately even with Prime it's still the luck of the draw. I wish there was an option to just use DPD or Royal Mail.

Not renewing next year, that's for sure.

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Re: Slightly longer period

Yeah, they have a habit of using those HDNL morons and the packaging is always dinged when they deliver something.

They also use City Sprint, who, to be fair, are pretty good, better than DPD who just bugger off without attempting to deliver half the time.

I do wish Amazon would provide options though, as you say.

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Silver badge

Re: Slightly longer period

You want an option to USE DPD? Are you mad? I'd like the exact opposite option.

Every time Amazon use DPD to deliver to me I have a problem. Usually the guy doesn't even bother to get out of his van when he realises he'll have to climb two flights of stairs. One time they claimed to have delivered a parcel but the signature was not the name of anyone in my building. I have never had a painless, successful delivery from DPD.

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Happy

Amazon prime is £49 for a family of 4

You don't have to live at the same address, even in the same country. My Dad has a prime account and lives in France, he added me (UK), my gran (UK) and my sister (Canada) so now we all have prime. Not bad for £49 or whatever the euro equivalent is....

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Bronze badge
Happy

"I wish there was an option to just use DPD or Royal Mail...."

There is.

Just click the button that says "First class Delivery" when you order, instead of "Guaranteed Next Day".

I use it, because First Class doesn't need a signature.

And the £49 per year is not per person, as someone else said - it's for a family. It's excellent value.

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FAIL

Re: Slightly longer period

Could be worse they could use Royal Fail, waste of time using an express delivery option if like Amazon they ship Blu Ray and the like with Royal Fail (Mail), you are lucky if you get it within the free economy saver delivery time window.

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FAIL

Re: "I wish there was an option to just use DPD or Royal Mail...."

Cancelled my Prime precicely because Amazon used Royal Fail, 90% of deliveries to me wrere late due to Royal Fail

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Anonymous Coward

Meh, EPUB based readers get this for free of course

free library lending has already been available. No subscription required...

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Unhappy

Re: Meh, EPUB based readers get this for free of course

Yup, my local library (along with all the others in the Bristol/Somerset/South Gloucestershire region) will lend eBooks in pretty much any format EXCEPT kindle.

As usual, it's a sodding licensing restrictions issue :-(

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Only on a hardware reader

This only works if you have a hardware reader, not the kindle app on a computer or iPad.

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JDX
Gold badge

Re: Only on a hardware reader

that would be a really important and useful addition to the article, if someone can corroborate it?

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Re: Only on a hardware reader

"Members who own Kindle devices can also choose from thousands of books -- including more than 100 current and former New York Times Bestsellers -- to borrow and read for free, as frequently as a book a month with no due dates, from the Kindle Owners' Lending Library".

from https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/help/customer/display.html/ref=lp_mem_help?ie=UTF8&nodeId=200182130

Clicking through to the link for the Kindle Owners' Lending Library confirms that it does not work with Kindle apps on other devices.

So it's only a good deal if you've got the kit.

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Re: Only on a hardware reader

That is a pretty crap restriction. I read books through various kindle apps on my PCs, phone and tablet. But I don't own a kindle so, despite having been a prime subscriber for many years, I'm excluded from this. Along with the free films that they get in the US and the ability to lend books to other kindle users (also US) Amazon seem to be going out of their way to annoy large segments of their users.

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Silver badge

Local library will let me have 9 ebooks/audio books at a time for three weeks and if I want I can get them again straight away.

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Unhappy

That was my thought

I read a lot more than a book a month... for the price of Prime, I can usually just buy a book a month. I mean, seriously; who takes a month to read a book? A much better solution would be to only allow you to check out one book at a time - return it, and you can immediately check out a new one. If that's one a month, fine; if that's a dozen a day, that's fine too. On average, any given user will only have one book checked out at a time.

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Meh

"Free"...?

Let's see:

"getting to read them for free will no doubt appeal to many."

versus

"Amazon’s UK wing is now a lending library, albeit a private one exclusive to folk willing to cough up £49 a year."

49 a year? Doesn't seem free to me.

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JDX
Gold badge

Re: "Free"...?

It's a bonus for Prime, forming a link between both services. Nothing more to it... Kindle users will be slightly more likely to take out Prime, Prime users will be slightly more likely to buy a Kindle as their next e-reader.

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Facepalm

Get a grip and relax...

Free as in, I already pay for prime so I'm getting something in addition to what I was expecting for nothing more. Sounds free to me. For some it may not be.

At the end of the day it's your money if you don't want to spend it don't spend it, nobody is forcing you to buy amazon e-readers, there are others on the market,. Nobody is forcing you to buy amazon's eBooks.

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Anonymous Coward

A result

Well, at least all you ill-informed twats ranting pro and con have motivated me into setting up that little python thing that strips the DRM off ebooks, so I suppose I can lend my ebooks to whoever I choose, too :D

(It's free, quick and easy, I recommend it.. if you want to play too, see:

http://apprenticealf.wordpress.com/2012/09/10/drm-removal-tools-for-ebooks/

Have another day.)

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Mushroom

Bomb under publishing industry

Drastically reducing the price of books (in this case to free) may be good for retailers who can use it as a promotional tool for their other product, but it's not good for the publishing industry, and it can't be good for writers and writing.

This seems to me an extraordinary turn of events whereby Amazon does what the eff it will with the book rights it's piled up: what will they do with the rights next - give them away with every Amazon-branded lollipop?

If these books are by living authors who are selling OK, this measure is a bomb under the publishing industry.

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