Not long ago, a friend sent me a preview of a book she was about to publish and asked me to read it. She loved it, but unfortunately the copy she sent me was in PDF format. And since I normally read books and other documents using my phone, I already knew that this was a recipe for eyestrain.
I spent three frustrating days squinting at my screen until someone reminded me that you can email a PDF to your Amazon account in a way that converts the file so it’s formatted for easy reading on a Kindle or in the app. Kindle. I tried it and it worked great, making the document a lot easier to read.
If you’re ever faced with the same problem, here’s how to convert a PDF so it can be easily read using a Kindle or Kindle app.
First, you need to establish two pieces of information: you need your special Kindle email address (the one you’ll be sending the file to), and you need to make sure that the personal email address you’ll be sending the file from is verified by Amazon.
On your laptop or desktop:
You can also find your Kindle email address in the Kindle app on your mobile:
Once set up, it’s very easy to send a PDF to your Kindle or a device with a Kindle app:
It may take a couple of minutes for the file to appear on your Kindle or Kindle-enabled device, but soon you should have a Kindle version of your PDF that you can markup, annotate, and change the font and font size, etc. Even with the glitches that will inevitably appear (most conversions aren’t perfect), you’ll still end up with a much more readable document.
Update August 23, 2023, 3:19 pm ET: This article was originally published on July 6, 2020, and has been updated to reflect changes to the app.