The Kindle Fire is a color touchscreen tablet available from Amazon. It runs on a proprietary version of the Android operating system and can surf the web, run apps, stream music and video, and perform other functions. The main difference between a Kindle Fire and other tablets is the lack of camera. The Fire can be connected to Wi-Fi or it can download from Amazon anywhere using the built-in “Whispernet” connection. The Kindle Fire can use the OverDrive Media Console (OMC) app to download and consume both e-books and audiobooks. The OMC app for Kindle Fire is similar to an old version of the app for other platforms. To use the app, you must also have an Adobe ID.
Competencies/Tasks for This Device
- Turn device on and off. Know how to tell when the device is sleeping vs. powered off.
- Adjust brightness & volume
- Turn Wi-Fi on/off
- Access the internet
- Navigate the settings to adjust for personal preferences
- Login to the Kindle store
- Add an email
- Access/dismiss keyboard
- Use shift key
- Use numbers
- Turn caps on/off
- Use special characters
- Install an app
- Explain the difference between a browser and an app
- How to close apps
- Organizing apps
- Create and move icons
- Create folders
- Using the OverDrive app to download, return, and navigate e-books, including bookmarks and comments.
Navigating the Kindle Fire
- To turn the Fire on or off, press and hold the button on the bottom. Waking will require a swipe to unlock. Shutting down fully will require confirmation. The Fire will “go to sleep” if left inactive, but this still uses power, especially if connected to the wireless network.
- Swipe left or right to turn pages or rotate the carousel.
- Tap an item in the carousel or on the favorites bar (bottom) to open it.
- Press and hold an item in the carousel to remove it or add it to favorites.
- Press and hold an item in favorites to remove it.
- To enlarge some views, place thumb and forefinger on the Fire’s surface, about an inch apart. Spread apart until desired size is reached.
- To decrease size in some views, place thumb and forefinger on the Fire’s surface, spread apart. Pull together until desired size is reached.
- Tap a category at the top of the home page to view items that have been downloaded in that category.
- Go back, return home, change the view, or search the Kindle using the toolbar at the bottom of the page. If you are viewing the web, a bookmarking icon and a full page icon are also available. If you do not see the toolbar, tap the arrow at the bottom of the page to un-hide it.
- Items can be stored on the cloud or in the device. If you cannot find an item, try clicking on the other location. If an item is in the cloud, it will have an arrow icon on it, indicating it needs to be downloaded for use.
- To view magazines in the newsstand, login using credentials found in the device bag.
Connecting to Wireless
Items in italics only apply to our wireless network.
- Swipe down from the top of the screen.
- Tap Wi-Fi and select library from the network list to connect.
- To complete the connection, return to home and use the link under the search bar to open the web.
- If you are not prompted to agree to the wireless network policy, enter our website in the address bar and click on the OverDrive icon to prompt the agreement page.
- Agree. The page will refresh in 10 seconds, as on laptops.
- Open web page to confirm.
Surfing the Internet
- Make sure you are connected to a wireless network.
- Tap “Web” in the top menu.
- Enter a search term or a web address in the top box. When the box is tapped, a keyboard will appear.
- Use arrow keys to navigate between pages
- Tap the book icon to see bookmarks.
- Tap the four arrow icon to view page in full screen. Retrieve the toolbar by tapping the arrow at the bottom of the page.
- Tap the page icon to open a menu for history, adding a bookmark, downloads, settings, sharing and finding text on a page.
- Tap the plus sign next to the page name to open a new tab.
Adding/Deleting an Email Account
There are two methods for receiving email on your Kindle Fire. You can download the app from your provider (Gmail, Yahoo, etc.), or you can configure the native email client with information about your accounts. These instructions are for the second method.
- Tap “apps” from the top menu on the home screen.
- Tap “email”, then “start.”
- Select your email provider, then enter your email address and password.
- Set your display name and other options and tap “view your inbox.”
- To delete the account, tap the menu icon on the footer and select accounts. Press and hold the name of the account you want to remove. On the popup menu, tap “remove account.” Confirm.
Uploading to the Kindle Fire*
*This activity is not required for this module if you are using the library’s Fire, because our cord is only for power, it does not convert to USB.
Method 1: Email items to Kindle address found on the credentials sheet in the device bag.
Method 2: Plug the Fire into the computer. It should show up as a separate drive. Copy the item from your computer and paste into appropriate folder on the Kindle (documents, music, etc.). Please note that some DRM files, WMA files, and others may not be usable on the Kindle. Sound files should be in MP3 format.
Download from the App Store
- Tap the Apps button in the top menu. This brings you to a page displaying apps you have. Apps stored in the cloud that have an arrow in the lower right corner will need to be downloaded before use.
- Tap “Store” in the upper right corner of the screen. (Make sure you are connected to wireless first.)
- Search the store using the box or browse the categories in the middle toolbar. Keep in mind only free apps may be downloaded, so you may want to input “free apps for kindle fire” in the search box.
- Swipe from bottom to top to scroll through lists.
- Tap the “free” icon next to the app you want to download. Then, tap “get app.”
Pro tip: If a patron is prompted to enter a credit card number and they only wish to use free apps, try a number on this page: http://www.paypalobjects.com/en_US/vhelp/paypalmanager_help/credit_card_numbers.htm. It will pass as a valid card, but will not accept any charges.
Downloading Books from Amazon
- Make sure Wi-Fi is on and connected.
- From the home screen, tap “Books.”
- In the upper right of the next screen, tap “Store.”
- Browse or search for a title. Swipe up or down to scroll.
- Tap a title to get more information.
- Tap the “Buy for…” button to purchase. The book will appear on your home page carousel and on your bookshelf (Home>Books).
OverDrive for Kindle Fire
Watch the video: http://help.overdrive.com/#videos
Download the brochure
Steps in italics are only needed for first run.
- Tap Apps in the top menu, then tap “Store” on the upper right of the screen.
- Type “OverDrive Media Console” in the search box at the top of the screen.
- Tap “Install”. You may need to tap it a second time after it downloads. After installation, the icon will be available on the home screen carousel as well as in the app menu.
- Open the app. Tap the menu icon at the bottom and select “Get Books.” (If prompted for an Adobe ID, skip to step 10, and then come back to step 4.)
- Tap “add a library” and enter our zip code. (Tap the box to get a keyboard.) Tap “search.”
- Select our library (be careful – the school district comes up first!).
- On the next screen, tap the star to turn it yellow. This saves the library as a “favorite.”
- Tap the library’s name to access the catalog. (To get to this screen, tap the menu icon on the bottom of the screen, then “get books.”)
- Search, check out and download the EPUB version of an e-book. Do NOT download the Kindle version. If downloading an audiobook, use mp3 format.
- On the first download, you will be prompted to enter an Adobe ID, if you did not enter it at setup. If you do not have one, click the link at the bottom of the page to create one.
- Enter the ID and password in the app and tap “Authorize.”
- To enjoy the book, tap the title on the app’s bookshelf. To get to the bookshelf from the reading view, tap the menu icon at the bottom of the screen and select “Bookshelf.”
- Tap the + next to the title in the bookshelf view to return/delete or get details about the item. If there is no +, press and hold the item’s cover to get the return/delete menu.
Navigating E-books in OverDrive
- To return to the main screen from the reading view, tap the menu icon at the bottom of the page and select “Bookshelf.” If the menu icon is not visible, tap the arrow to reveal it.
- Within a book, tap the menu icon to access item details, navigation, bookmarks, and reader settings.
- Press and hold a word to look it up in a dictionary or Wikipedia. You must be connected to a network for this feature to work.
- To create a bookmark or access bookmarks, tap the menu icon and select bookmarks.
Navigating Audiobooks in OverDrive
- When listening to an audiobook, some menus are available at all times. Once can pause, fast forward, rewind, rewind 15 seconds, create bookmarks, view table of contents (navigation).
- To return to the bookshelf view, tap the menu icon at the bottom of the screen and select “Bookshelf.”
- To set a sleep timer, tap the menu icon at the bottom of the screen and select “Sleep Timer.”
- To view book details, tap the menu icon at the bottom of the screen and select “details.”
- Note – at least one “part” of the book must be fully downloaded before listening can begin.
- If OverDrive titles do not download to the app as expected, go to menu>downloads and tap “Download All.” To download titles automatically, go to menu>app settings and check the “auto-download files” box. When users engage “airplane mode” on their devices, file downloads get turned off. However, when the device is taken out of airplane mode, the file downloads do not toggle back on automatically.
- It is possible to download e-books in Kindle format, but that bypasses the app and requires Amazon login. By using the app exclusively, you also gain the ability to download audiobooks. In an effort to minimize patron confusion, we only teach the app method to patrons.
- Download and install the OverDrive app.
- Download and return an e-book, experimenting with settings.
- Download and return an audiobook, experimenting with settings.
- Set up and delete an email account.
- Review the competencies above and be sure to experiment with all gestures and settings.