Can an iPad Read Kindle Books?

And How Do I Buy Kindle Books on the iPad?

Photo © Jordan Siemens / Getty Images. Jordan Siemens / Getty Images

Between Night Shift, which shifts the blue light out of the iPad's spectrum during the evening, and a low reflective screen, the iPad makes a great e-reader.  And you aren't forced to use Apple's iBooks.  The iPad is compatible with Amazon's Kindle books, Barnes and Noble Nook books and a number of third-party readers.   So if you have a large collection of books you bought on your Kindle, don't worry.

 You'll be able to read them perfectly fine on the iPad.  

How Do I Read My Kindle Books on the iPad?

The first step is to download the free Kindle reader from the App Store.  The Kindle app is compatible with both Kindle books and Audio Companions, but not with Audible books.  (More on those later!)  You can also read books from the Kindle Unlimited subscription.

After you download the Kindle app, you will need to log in to your Amazon account.  This will allow the app to download the books you have bought on Amazon.  When the app first boots up, you should see all of your books listed in the "cloud" tab.  When you tap a book, you will see a progress meter fill up across the book.  This is the book downloading to the device.  Once it is finished downloading, you will be able to read it on your iPad.  You can launch the book either from the Cloud tab or the Device tab.

How Do I Buy Kindle Books on the iPad

This is where it gets tricky.

 You can browse through and read Kindle Unlimited books through the Kindle app, but you cannot buy Kindle books.  This is a restriction from Apple limiting what can be sold through an app.   You also cannot buy Kindle books through the official Amazon app.  

But don't worry, you can buy Kindle books from your iPad.

 You simple need to use the Safari web browser and go directly to  After you buy the book through the web browser, you should be able to open the Kindle app and see the book.  If you are coming directly from buying the book on Amazon's website, you may need to tap the Sync button in the bottom-right corner of the Kindle app to refresh all of your purchases.  

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How Do I Change Fonts, Change the Background Color and Search the Book?

While you are reading a book, you can access the menu by tapping anywhere on the page.  This will bring up a menu across both the top and the bottom of the iPad's display.  

The bottom menu is a scroll bar that allows you to quickly scroll through pages.  This is great if you are resuming a book you've already started from another source like the actual hardcover.  (The Kindle app should resume where you left off even if you read it on another device, so you shouldn't need to do this to continue reading from a book you started on your Kindle.) 

The top menu gives you a number of options.  The most important is the font button, which is the button with the "Aa" letters.  Through this sub-menu, you can change the font style, the size, the background color of the page, how much white space to leave in the margins and even change the brightness of the display.


The search button, which is a magnifying glass, will let you search the book.  The button with three horizontal lines is the menu button.  You can use this button to go to a specific page, listen to the audio companion or read through the table of contents.

On the other side of the menu is the share button, which will let you send a text message with the book's link to a friend, a bookmark of annotations, the x-ray feature that brings up information about the page including definitions of some of the terms and a bookmark button.  

How Do I Listen to My Audible Books?

If you have a collection of Audible books, you will need to download the Audible app to listen to them.  Unfortunately, the Kindle app only works with audible companions.  The Audible app works similar to the Kindle app. After signing in with your Amazon login, you will be able to download your Audible books to the iPad and listen to them.   

Don't Let Your iPad Boss You Around!

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