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Wednesday, December 21, 2011, 08:57 am PT (11:57 am ET)

Kindle iPad app adds Amazon Newsstand, Google Voice for iPhone gains group texts

Amazon has updated its Kindle application for iOS, adding the ability to read magazines on the iPad. And Google Voice for iPhone has also been updated, gaining compatibility with Sprint and support for group texting.

Kindle takes on Apple's iBooks, Newsstand

The latest version of Kindle for iPad, iPhone and iPod touch was released on Wednesday (iTunes link) in the form of version 2.9. The 16.6MB download is a free universal application available on Apple's iOS App Store.

The update packs a handful of new features specific to the iPad, including added access to a selection of over 400 magazines and newspapers that are also available on the Kindle Fire. Amazon's magazine and newspaper selection competes with Apple's own Newsstand feature built in to iOS 5.

Magazines available on Amazon's newsstand include Martha Stewart Living, Cosmopolitan, Men's Health, and Popular Science. Issues are available in full color, and single issues are available for purchase along with subscriptions.

The iPad has also gained access to print replica textbooks. With this, students can buy thousands of titles, and also choose to rent many textbooks. Print replica textbooks maintain the rich formatting and layout of print additions, but add features like notes, highlights, zooming, panning, a linked table of contents, and Whispersync of notes with other Kindle devices.

Kindle


The update also includes seamless integration of personal documents, allowing users to e-mail their documents to their Send-to-Kindle e-mail address and read them on iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. A new built-in PDF reader also allows customers to open and read PDFs within the Kindle application.

Google Voice gains group texting

Also released on Wednesday was an update to Google Voice (iTunes link) for iPhone. Version 1.4.0.2372 is a free update and is a 4.6MB download.

The latest version adds multi-recipient texting to the iOS application, as well as contact autocomplete. The new version also adds support for Sprint, allowing users on Sprint's wireless network in the U.S. to place phone calls through Google Voice.

Other additions to the software are a multi-line text entry field, complete with character count, as well as one-touch copy and paste functionality in the Google Voice dialpad.