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Amazon Added Support for Russian to KindleGen – Russian Kindle Store to Follow?

Amazon has quietly dropped another hint about their expansion plans. reported today that KindleGen, one of Amazon’s tools for generating Kindle ebooks, now lists Russian as a language option (for the interface).

See the bottom line for the new language option:

kindlegen russian support

Update: A reader has informed me that, even though Russian isn’t yet listed in the KDP supported languages list, the KDP support team no longer blocks Russian language ebooks. Thanks, Vladimir!

There has been no official announcement from Amazon on their plans for the Russian ebook market, but I do know that Amazon has had a presence in Russia since at least April 2013. That’s when they hired Arkady Vitrouk, the former CEO of the Russia’s Atticus Publishing Group, to head the Russian Kindle Store.

Amazon has never been one to broadcast their expansion plans but they have in the past dropped hints. For example, the Kindle Touch shipped in 2011 with support for Italian, Spanish, and Brazilian Portuguese, and the Kindle Paperwhite launched in 2012 with support for Chinese and Japanese. All of those countries eventually received a local Kindle Store.

This new support for Russian is almost certainly a sign of Amazon’s intentions, just like last month when Amazon added support for a couple dozen additional languages in the Kindle Store, including everything from Afrikaans to Icelandic.

I have no guess as to when Amazon will launch the Russian Kindle Store, but I suspect that it will happen as soon as they can make it happen. There already are two international ebookstores in Russia (iBooks and Play Books); Apple and Google both launched in Russia in late 2012. Kobo is also interested in that market, and there were also hints that Barnes & Noble was interested in expanding into Russia, though that does not seem likely at this point.

Update: Apple hasn’t launched in Russia; they support the Russian language in iBooks but do not yet sell ebooks in that market.

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Vladimir October 25, 2013 um 1:38 am

Sorry, but there is an error: iBookstore doesn’t work in Russia (iTunes sells music, video, but not books) yet

reichsputin October 25, 2013 um 3:51 am

No iBooks in Russia currently. There are no modern paid books. It just allows to download a bunch of old public domain titles (none of which are in Russian). So, its existence doesn’t count as real.

Nate Hoffelder October 25, 2013 um 7:35 am

Thanks! I misinterpreted from the fact that Russian is listed as being supported.

Vladimir October 25, 2013 um 7:13 am

Russian was added to Kindlegen and Kindle Preview only as interface language and not as the language for books, unfortunately.

Vladimir October 25, 2013 um 7:39 am

KDP has really begun to support Russian but unofficially: Russian isn’t in the language list but there is Russian interface in Previewer and now the Amazon moderation team doesn’t block the Russian book as unsupported (in my experience). The work is in process. And it’s good.

Nate Hoffelder October 25, 2013 um 8:07 am


Pik October 25, 2013 um 4:36 pm

Great ! And what about something around Greek language ?? Ok with Cyrillic alphabet and fonts, but also Greek classic fonts are important (they are the origin of our culture) !!!

Karol Bulova October 26, 2013 um 9:31 am


I spent couple of hours reading about unicode hacks and how to add Cyrillic characters to kindle – but it seems all the information is outdated (2010-2012) and relevant only for old kindles.

I am planing to buy Kindle Paperwhite 2nd generation (from AmazonUK) as a gift to one lovely Russian girl – can you please confirm that she will be able to load there (say via USB) Russian books without any issues?

Will she be able to see proper Russian characters once reading them?
Many Thanks!

Vladimir October 26, 2013 um 12:05 pm

Last generation of Kindle (e.g. my 3rd gen Kindle) support rendering of Cyrillic just without font embedding.

Amazon Has Retired KindleGen | The Digital Reader September 4, 2020 um 10:16 am

[…] think it would have to be when I tested it to report on support for Russian. (This was all the way back in 2013!) I never found much use for the tool, but I understand that some publishers had integrated […]

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