The program will be available for download for Apple's App Store and give users access to the same ebooks, magazines and newspapers that Kindle users can buy on Amazon. The program's Whisper Sync service promises to keep track of a reader's place in their chosen book, allowing users to pick up where they left off on either device, the Kindle or iPhone, if users own both.
Amazon has yet to announce whether the Kindle will come to the UK. The only barrier would seem to be the wireless Whispernet technology, which allows users to buy ebooks without connecting to a computer. Whispernet piggybacks the Sprint mobile network in the US, so a UK launch would require a similar deal with a network here.
While other ebook readers such as Stanza from Lexcycle and the eReader from Fictionwise are already popular on iPhones, it is the first time Kindle content has been made available on a non-Kindle device. Amazon vice president Ian Freed hinted at the move in an interview with CNET UK's sister site CNET News last month, and expressed optimism that some of those who try Kindle on a phone will ultimately buy Amazon's device.
The app release is Amazon's latest salvo for a greater piece of the ebook market. Thecompany unveiled the second generation of its Kindle ebook reader last month, which is thinner than its predecessor and offering longer battery life.
In launching the new app, Amazon is taking on Google, which last month launched a mobile version of its Google Book Search, giving iPhone and Android users instant access to more than 1.5 million public domain books.