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Comixology announces launch of the Kindle for Web Reader beta comics experience

Welcome to the beta of the 4.0 web-reading experience

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The unpopular rollout of Comixology 4.0 has been criticised for a number of things –  the shift from a dedicated Comixology webstore to an adapted Amazon page buried within the site’s Kindle store; to the replacement of many purchased HD books with lower resolution versions; to unstable apps on iOS, Android and Amazon’s own Kindle Fire tablets. One other lamented loss was the erasure of the original Comixology web reader experience, which served those who did not have access to tablet or smartphone devices.

Some weeks ago a fix was promised. At last, the promised beta rollout of the Comixology 4.0/newer Kindle for Web Reader began. Announced once again by a series of tweets yesterday afternoon.

Via a series of tweets (including images), they wrote:

1/ We’ve just kicked off a long-awaited, worldwide comics Beta on the Kindle for Web Reader that better supports the comics reading experience.
2/ The web reading Beta now supports double-page spread.
3/ Our web reading Beta now includes zoom in and out to better read your comic or enjoy the art. Just double click to zoom.
4/ The Beta also supports vertical scroll. You can turn the feature on via the Aa menu on the top right of the window.


5/ Switch back and forth between the beta experience easily from the reader menu (via the 3 vertical dots next to the Aa menu).


6/ We know Guided View is a critical part of the web reading experience – we’re working hard on it and plan to launch it later this year.
7/ In the meantime, go check out our first web reading improvements at http://read.amazon.com.

As with everything since the introduction of Comixology 4.0, reception to the news has been very mixed. While some praise the introduction (or sometimes re-introduction) of certain features, others protest that the beta is just a slight improvement on an inferior product to what customers had enjoyed before February.

Turning the page or attempting to zoom out won’t get this book position unstuck

A quick test of our own and we discovered that somehow the same comic was downscaled even further in the beta reader than the alpha – and also the double page spread very quickly got stuck in an awkward place, necessitating a page refresh and reset of the beta. It is also annoying that we have to remember a separate Amazon web address to find the Kindle for Web Reader in the first place (it could have a more visible link somewhere on a book’s page). Conclusion: business as usual for 4.0.

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