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Amazon Launches Kindle Kids’ Book Creator, Announces KDP Kids

Kids_Page_Hero._CB345447331_[1]Making an ebook is easy – so long as it mainly consists of text. But if you want to want to make a fixed layout ebook like a kid’s picture book, that’s a little harder, which is why Amazon launched Kindle Comics Creator last year and why Amazon just launched the Kindle Kids’ Book Creator.

This new tool helps authors and publishers combine artwork and text into an illustrated kids’ book which can be read in a Kindle app on smartphones, tablets, and computers. I haven’t had a chance to use it myself, but Amazon says that it will create a great reading experience for kids and parents alike.

From the description in the user manual, I can see that the app lets authors import manuscripts in html, PDF, Epub, Mobi, Word (doc/docx), and other formats, and that the supported image formats include ppm, png, jpg, and tiff.

"Authors want to focus on telling great stories and we want to help them do that. No one should have to be a computer programmer to create a beautiful, illustrated Kindle book for kids," said Russ Grandinetti, Senior Vice President, Kindle.

In addition to launching the new app, Amazon also opened a new section of their self-pub platform. KDP Kids complements the new app by offering authors age and grade recommendations so parents can better choose the books suitable for their kids.

All in all this looks like it will be a pretty useful tool – assuming that all you want to do is make Kindle ebooks.

You can download the app from Amazon; it’s available for Windows 7,8 and for OSX.

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fjtorres September 3, 2014 um 6:39 pm

Are you sure it only yields ebooks?
Given that Amazon also owns CREATESPACE, which allows for graphics-heavy color pbooks it would be odd.

Nate Hoffelder September 3, 2014 um 7:01 pm

Actually, I just assumed that based on the name and the press release. I will go read the user manual and see.

Edit: The user manual does not mention createspace or print.

fjtorres September 3, 2014 um 8:24 pm

Does it allow export to pdf?
(That’s what Createspace prefers.)

If not, they’ll soon get a ton of requests for it.

R. Scot Johns September 4, 2014 um 7:55 am

You’re misunderstanding what this tool is for. It’s a graphic interface for Kindlegen, designed to produce KF8 fixed layout ebooks. PDF is an accepted input format, not an output.

Also, Nate, you’re mistaken in your statement regarding what formats KKBC accepts. Only PDF and image files can be input, the others you mention are only for KDP upload. KKBC does not even accept mobi as an input unless it was made with KKBC in the first place. It does not accept epub. See my recent post for an analysis.

Nate Hoffelder September 4, 2014 um 8:07 am

Whoops. Thanks for catching my errors!

Angela Booth September 4, 2014 um 1:25 am

Competition for iBooks Author? I’ve bought some truly gorgeous graphics-heavy ebooks from the iBooks Store.

Amazon must think there’s lots of kids' ebook authors who need something like this.

Nate Hoffelder September 4, 2014 um 7:07 am

It certainly fills a need, yes.

Rob Siders September 4, 2014 um 9:46 am

Nowhere close to competition for iBooks Author.

My suspicion is that Amazon doesn’t think kids book authors need this as much as Amazon has a need for more FXL ebooks. The tool, as limited as it is, can help achieve both.

R. Scot Johns September 4, 2014 um 8:04 am

Here"s a link to my analysis post:

Michael W. Perry September 4, 2014 um 12:06 pm

Others are right. This isn’t a competitor for iBooks Author. IBA’s target audience is those doing highly graphic textbooks, including high school teachers. I downloaded Amazon’s new app and looked at what it can do. It really is just for creating children’s story books with short snippets of text. At present, the only animation it can do is to make text pop in and out.

I’m just wondering if there’s enough give in the app that kids could create their own story books and pass them around to friends and family, independent of publishing through Amazon. That’d be fun.

Tom Semple September 5, 2014 um 3:48 am

This seems like a shot across the bow of FXL ePub, more than anything. You can spend the next year of your life learning InDesign so you can export (as of CC 2014, which came out just a couple of months ago) FXL ePub, or you can generate a PDF and spend a few minutes with KBC and get it into the Kindle Store. That is not to say there is any comparison between the capabilities of the two formats: FXL ePub is far more powerful (and complicated). Just that one is a whole lot easier to publish.

The question I have is whether Amazon ever intends to implement the full ePub3 feature spectrum (specifically JavaScript and FXL), or whether that is all on the back burner until there’s a compelling business case to do so. Is there enough of a market for 'gorgeous' or high interaction iBA or FXL ePub books to justify the effort to create them? Maybe. But it seems that Amazon is not waiting to try and grab the low hanging fruit.

Amazon’s New Kindle Textbook Creator Makes PDF eBooks Which Can't Be Read on a Kindle ⋆ The Digital Reader January 22, 2015 um 11:44 am

[…] And today Amazon launched a new tool to let authors and educators make these PDF-ish ebooks. it's called Kindle Textbook Creator, and it's not to be confused with Amazon's other ebook creation apps (for comic books and kids books). […]

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