One of the super cool features of the Amazon Kindle Fire is that you can actually share books and purchased content with friends and across devices, just like how you would let a friend borrow a paperback book or hardcover book you bought at a store.
This works even if the person doesn’t own a Kindle or a Fire tablet! What you have to do first is make sure that the person you’re lending it to has the Kindle reading app downloaded to their device. The Kindle app is free, and it’s available for both Android and iOS machines.
You’ll have to go to either the App Store or the Google Play store to download the app, and install it on their machine. Once you get that done, you’re ready to initiate the lending process which is actually pretty simple. Books can be lent out for a period of two weeks.
Right now, most magazines and newspapers can’t be lent out to others, but check with the publisher of said content as some newsletters and magazines have opted-in to the Amazon lending program.
There’s actually two distinct ways to loan out books on a Kindle, and here we’ll sketch out both ways to get it done. The first way is doing it through the ‘Product Detail Page’ on the Kindle Store. To do this, you don’t even need to have the Fire or Kindle device in hand…you can simply log into your Amazon account from a mobile device or a PC.
Either way, do yourself a favor and log into the Kindle Store from whatever machine you have handy. Then look for the book title you want to loan out to a friend. You can do this by going through your library or using the search features.
Once you find the title you’re looking for, go into the Product Details page for the title you want to loan out. Make sure that you’ve already purchased the book.
Once that’s out of the way, a new option will appear on the product detail page; it will simply be an option reading ‘Loan this book.’ Click on it, and it will send you to a new page, appropriately titled ‘Loan this Book.’
Once you get to the ‘Loan this Book’ page, you can just enter the email address of the recipient, and you also have the option to send them a little optional message like a birthday greeting or a bit of info about the book. There’s a little wrinkle to this process, however; make sure that you type in the person’s personal email address, not the ‘’Send to Kindle’’ email address, which isn’t always the same thing.
Once you type in the correct address, all you have to do is click ‘Send Now.’’ Once you do that, your friend has seven days to accept the loan. If it isn’t accepted in the 7 day timeframe, the book will make its way back to your own content page again, and you can open it and read it again yourself, or loan it out to someone else if it was never read by your friend.
It’s important to know if our friend read it or not, because you’re only allowed to loan out a title once. The other thing of course is that once you loan out a book, you won’t be able to read it yourself.
This is just like how it would work in ‘real life,’ if you loan out a hardback or paperback to someone else, the book isn’t in your house anymore and you’re not able to read it. Amazon took this approach the same way when it comes to e-books, so you can’t read a book at the same time that you offer it to others.
The other way to loan a book out is from your Kindle itself, inside the Manage Your Content and Devices menu.
To do this, go to the ‘’Manage Your Content and Devices’’ part of your account once you turn on your Kindle and log in. Then go to your library, find the title that you want to loan out, and click on it. There should be a menu option that says ‘’Actions.’’ Click on that.
If your book or content is available to be loaned out, there will be a ‘Loan this title’ option. Authors and publishing houses can opt-in or opt-out to this program, so if you don’t see that option in the menu, it usually means that the author or rights holder has decided against letting people loan the book out.
Just like when using the other method, you’ll need to enter the email address of the person you’d like to lend the book out to here in the prompt. Just like with the other method, you’ll have to send the book loan notification out to the person’s personal email address and not their ‘’Send To Kindle’’ email address or their Amazon.com account email.
Once you do that, all you have to do is click ‘’Send Now’’ and the process will be complete.
If someone else has sent you a book, here’s how to open it up and read it; you’ll have to look for the email sent to you through Amazon that should say something like ‘’A Loaned Book for You.’’
Once you get the email message, open it up. There will literally be a button in the email that will say ‘’Get Your Loaned Book Now.’’ Click on it. Then just sign into your Amazon account, or create one if you don’t have one yet.
Once you do that, there will be another button that says ‘’Accept loaned book.’’ Finally, it will detect automatically whether you have a Fire or Kindle of your own, and open up a page that will let you get the loaned book ‘delivered’ to the device of your choice.
If you don’t own one of those devices, it will lead you automatically to a screen that will let you download the Kindle reading app that will let you read the book.
Hope this article has helped you understand more about the Amazon loaning process!