Do You Send Documents to Your Kindle?
Amazon’s Kindle has most definitely changed the way that people read books. You now have the ability to take an entire library’s worth of books with you wherever you go. With an integrated backlight, you can read in almost any lighting condition. And the amazing e-ink screen likely has the longest battery life of any screen in your home. Your Kindle should be a big part of your reading system.
But how are you getting your books on it? Like most people, you’re probably making purchases through Amazon.com or directly on the Kindle itself. Personally, I very rarely buy books through the Kindle store. I much prefer to use the “Send to Kindle” feature to get content on my device.
What is Send to Kindle?
This feature allows you to send nearly any type of text document to your personal Kindle device. Maybe you have a PDF of a whitepaper that you need for work. Perhaps a friend shared a rough draft of a book they’re working on that you’d love to read on your Kindle rather than on a computer. There are lots of reasons why you’d want to take advantage of reading on the device itself but may not want to purchase the content through the Kindle store.
How Does it Work?
The functionality of the feature is easy enough to understand but I’ll break it down here. You have a few different options to get your document from your computer or phone to your Kindle.
Option 1 — Use “Send to Kindle” Software
Amazon has a piece of software that you can use for this exact purpose. It can be downloaded on PC, Mac, or Android. They also offer a Google Chrome plugin for your browser or Chromebook. This software lives on your device and allows you to choose files that will be sent to your Kindle device. If you have multiple Kindles registered, you can choose which devices will receive the content and you also have the option to upload it to your Kindle Cloud Reader.
For most people, this will be the easiest option
Option 2 — Use “Send to Kindle” e-mail address
You may not be aware of this, but every Kindle device has a unique email address tied to it. This allows you to email files directly into your Kindle! It’s actually a pretty magical use for an aging technology like e-mail. Under your Kindle Personal Document settings on your Amazon account, you’ll see the option to set this up. You will need to give permission for certain email addresses to send content to your device. This eliminates any threat of spam files just showing up on your device which would be a nightmare.
All you have to do is send an email to your kindle e-mail address with your text file attached. The next time you sync your device, the file will magically appear next to all of your other Kindle books.
Option 3 — “Push to Kindle”
Option 3 technically uses the same technology as Option 2, but it’s worth highlighting anyway. There is a browser plugin called “Push to Kindle” that allows you to easily send almost any article to your Kindle to read later. There have been other plugins that have had similar functionality over the years, but I find “Push to Kindle” to be the best.
I’m sure you’ve come across plenty of articles (on Medium or otherwise) that look interesting but seem too long to read at the moment. It can be hard to stop what you’re doing and read an article in your web browser for more than 5 minutes. Just send the article to your Kindle to read whenever it’s convenient for you. And you get to take advantage of the amazing reading experience of the e-ink screen on your Kindle.
While it’s great to send PDFs and personal documents to your Kindle, I most frequently use this functionality for sending articles and library books. Because we all know that we should be reading multiple books at once to keep our brain on its toes.
Yes, you can use this same concept to download the files for digital library loans from your local library! Honestly, that’s a whole separate topic that’s probably worth its own article. It’s a tremendous function that really makes your Kindle even more useful!
Have you used these Kindle document features before? Any use cases that I’m missing? Let me know!
Originally published at https://iwasreading.com on May 12, 2021.