Amazon today announced the new Kindle Fire, two Kindle Fire HDs, and the Kindle Paperwhite, along with some amazing pricing that could seriously challenge Apple in the tablet space. However, if you weren’t paying close attention to the news coming out of Amazon’s press conference today, you may have missed that its Whispersync service has moved beyond books and movies, to audiobooks and games.
Amazon’s Whispersync service has been around since the early days of the Kindle. Traditionally, it was the service that would sync the amount of text users had read in each book to the cloud, allowing readers to pick up where they left off on another device running the Kindle app. When the Amazon video app began appearing on many devices, Whispersync also began syncing movie playback in the cloud.
Now, Whispersync for Games will save your games in the cloud, while Whispersync for Voice will sync audiobook playback with text. The Whispersync for Games service is similar to that of movie and books: your place is simply saved in the cloud so that it will be consistent across multiple platforms.
Whispersync for Voice, however, is more remarkable. The service will now allow users to go from reading a book on the Kindle next to their bedstand, to listening to the Audible audiobook version of the same book through the Audible app on their smartphone, and then back to reading on a device with the Kindle app, all seamlessly, right where they left off.
Amazon has not provided details on the service yet, so it is unknown whether customers will have to purchase both the Kindle version and the Audible version of a text to enjoy Whispersync for Voice. If that is the case, that would seem to be a large cost for a feature that is essentially a cool timesaver. It’s possible, instead, that the new Whispersync hints at Kindle ebook/Audible audiobook combo deals in the near future.