Amazon Teen

Well this is a wholly and entirely worthless service offered by Amazon. My daughter would like to read a book. She’s willing to use her own money to buy a digital copy, which means that I buy it and transfer the money from her bank account to mine. That’s all fine. But how can she read it?

I figured I’d just install the Kindle app on her device and log in with my account. But I’m uneasy with having 1-click buy on with her device. No problem, I’ll just disable 1-click. BUT THERE’S NO FUCKING WAY TO DISABLE 1-CLICK!

So, maybe I just set her up with an Amazon account on my family account. Oh look, there are Amazon Teen accounts, which looks perfect. She has to get approval from me for purchases. I go through the rigamoral to sign her up, get her all good to go and try to sign into the Kindle app on her phone. AND IT JUST WON’T SIGN IN. It does nothing. I can sign in with my account, then sign out, but she can’t sign in. W.T.F.

I never figured out how to sign into the Kindle app, but I did find out it wouldn’t have mattered. YOU CAN’T SHARE PURCHASES WITH A TEEN ACCOUNT. If I have a book she might like to read, too bad, she has to rebuy it on her account. Holy. Fucking. Shit. Amazon has succeeded in making an already frustrating day into a diarrhea blizzard.

So I refunded the book and I can’t figure out how she can read it. Neat.

Does this work?

That link just takes me to my My Account page.

That only applies to in-app purchases for apps you purchase on the Amazon App Store. (Why would you purchase apps there in the first place?)

I did look at that setting, but was foiled.

Okay. I see the problem. That’s for like tokens in free to play games. It’s hard to google because kindle is not just a reader, it’s a tablet so you get bad hits

This one seems to work to restrict book sales to password only.

That works on a Kindle device, but will not work on the Kindle app. I appreciate the help, but there’s just not a way to do it.

This will probably end with you just buying her a paperback, won’t it?

Yeah, that’s probably how it will end. :P It is really strange to me how parent-unfriendly online services mostly are. It’s like they’re all designed by 20-somethings without kids, and then kid-stuff is added as an afterthought designed by people who have heard of kids but never seen one, and then unsupported and ignored until it breaks.

It’s also Amazon, though.
Their delivery works pretty well, but their non-developer software… I don’t think anyone likes their storefront, the way search works there, Prime Video got a good selection, but that interface…

Yeah, you’re right. Shopping for shoes on Amazon is one of the most maddening experiences possible. (Why, if I filter for a size, am I being shown selections that don’t have that size in stock?!?! And which combination of size & color actually match the price advertized?)

My favorite Amazonism related to kid controls: on Amazon Freetime, which is a service designed to allow parents to control kids’ content, you can set separate weekday and weekend hours for kids. On weekends, you might allow them to stay up reading on their Kindle until 8pm, but bed by 7pm on weekdays. That’s a nice feature. Except that Amazon designates Friday night as a weekday and Sunday night as a weekend. OMG, it would be hilarious if it weren’t so goddamn frustrating. Pages and pages of parent comments for years saying “Have you ever even interacted with a child?!?” I’ve called customer support about it and presumably thousands of other parents have too. It’s so fucking obvious, but they’ve never fixed it.

You can always just use the apprentice alf dedrm tools to turn the Kindle book you bought into an epub. That’s what I do so I can read the books I buy in Moon+ reader and don’t have to keep the ridiculously large Kindle app installed on my phone.

That’s not a bad idea. I think I have Calibre installed on my PC for that purpose.

I found this article (not sure it it will be helpful but it goes through different strategies):

That’s definitely the way to do it. Fuck whatever store lock-in & read the books you bought where you want with the software you want.

This becomes especially important if / when you find yourself stuck with locked books you purchased from a store which has since shut down. I’m not suggesting that it’ll happen with Amazon, but it did happen with two diffferent stores I’d used over the years and it could absolutely happen with B&N or Kobo or others.


Have you considered doing it the less finicky way?

My daughter has her own Amazon account, completely untied to mine.
I just sends her gift cards for her to buy books monthly.