How to Convert a .Pdf eBook to Kindle

by Heather Lindsay

The Amazon Kindle was not originally designed to display PDF eBooks with the same utility that it displays the .azw native Kindle file type. Amazon has since updated the software for the Kindle 2 and later versions so that you can view PDF eBooks, but the Kindle 1 still cannot handle PDFs. Although PDF eBooks are viewable on the Kindle, they do not have the same functionality of the .azw files. provides a file conversion service via email to convert PDF files to .azw, for greater utility on your Kindle.


Navigate to the "Manage Your Kindle" page on and log in to your account.


Find the section titled "Your Kindle Approved E-mail List" and enter the email address or addresses you wish to use to send the file to for conversion. This authorizes the specific email address to send files to your Kindle. Due to fees associated with using the 3G network, Amazon instituted this to restrict spam from your Kindle account.


Open your email and start a new message to your Kindle account.


Enter the appropriate Kindle email address to which you wish to send the message. The email address to send it to is composed of the name you gave your Kindle during registration, plus either or The first address uses the Kindle's 3G network with associated fees, and the second uses the Kindle's Wi-Fi network, free of charge. For example


Attach the PDF ebook to the email message, and type "Convert" into the subject line. If you do not enter "Convert" the document will simply be transferred to your Kindle without being converted first.


Turn on your Kindle and activate the wireless function to download the converted ebook file.


  • check Emails sent via the address incur fees because it uses the 3G network. As of 2011 these fees are 15 cents per megabyte in the United States, and 99 cents per megabyte outside the U.S.


  • close PDF ebooks are only able to be converted if they do not have digital rights management, or DRM, restrictions associated with the file.

About the Author

Heather Lindsay is a stained glass artist who holds a master's degree in library science, a bachelor's degree in anthropology with a minor in art, and has enjoyed working in special libraries with photograph collections.

Photo Credits

  • photo_camera Mario Tama/Getty Images News/Getty Images