Amazon announced this morning through an email to its customers that all personal documents archived in your Kindle e-reader library are also now being made available from Amazon Cloud Drive. The files will be placed in a new folder called “My Send-to-Kindle Docs” where you’ll then be able to manage the items as you would any other file, including being able to organize, share or delete them as need be.
Personal documents are those which include files you’ve sent to your Kindle device, like Word documents, PDFs, images, online news articles or blogs, or um, you know, e-books you’ve…ahem…acquired. You can upload these to your Kindle device via the browser, desktop, mobile device, or email.
The change is taking place without any need for end user involvement, similar to other actions Amazon has taken in the past, such as when it switched on “AutoRip” functionality for CDs and vinyl, for example, automatically placing music files in users’ online storage drives. (Well that’s one way to workaround the challenge of generating traction for Amazon Cloud Drive!)
And as always, you can use Manage Your Kindle to see a list of your documents, re-deliver them to Kindle devices and free reading apps, delete them, or turn off auto-saving of documents to the cloud. Documents will be delivered just as they have in the past and you will continue to have 5 GB of free cloud storage for your personal documents. Just “Send Once, Read Everywhere.”
In addition, the documents you store in your Amazon Cloud Drive will be stored in their native format, like Microsoft Word (DOC) or TXT for example, so you’ll be able to access them from anywhere using the Cloud Drive service. Previously, Amazon would automatically convert things like DOC files to Kindle-friendly formats. It still does this for the sake of reading, but now keeps a copy of the original in your Cloud Drive.
However, the change doesn’t mean your Cloud Drive will automatically turn into a free, web-based e-book reader of sorts. Things that you can do on the Kindle, like bookmark pages or keep tracking of reading progress, won’t work on Cloud Drive.
But there is one benefit, as others have noted: because Kindle owners received 5 GB in free space for Personal Documents and Cloud Drive users received 5 GB for free file storage, the resulting merger means you’ll now have 10 GB of free file storage to play around with.