Are People Playing Games on Their Kindle e-Reader?

kindle games

Amazon has been marketing games on the entire line of e-ink readers for the last four years. The Kindle Keyboard, Touch, Paperwhite, and prior models all have to ability to purchase “Active Content” directly from the Amazon store. Normally each game costs $2.99 and major publishers such as Electronic Arts are contributing content. With close to a thousand games available, are readers actually playing them?

Kindle Games are often fairly basic in nature and most tend to focus on word association, brain teasers, and puzzles. In some cases there are some great note taking and business apps that you can use. You can easily purchase games directly on your Kindle, or navigate to the Kindle Games & Active Content section on Amazon’s website. We talk to thousands of Kindle users at conventions, on our forum or who comment on our website. Hardly anyone has ever brought up playing games on their e-reader.  The main question is whether are people even aware they can do this and do they have a desire to do so?

A recent poll conducted on the official Kindle Boards had over 100 people weigh in on playing games on their e-ink device.  38% of the voting audience said they have either purchased or played games at one point or another. 25.7% of the population said they have never played any games, or have no intention of ever doing so. The final 35% weighed in and said they only play games on their Kindle Fire.

Amazon is the only company in the world that has a small market devoted to the sales of Kindle Games. Most other companies ship their devices with a few basic ones, like Sudoku or Chess. In all cases, you are stuck with the default ones and do not have any options to install or purchase other content. People obviously buy dedicated e-readers to read ebooks.

In researching this article, the vast majority of Kindle users had no idea they could buy or purchase games on their Kindle. One particular user told us “I didn’t know my Kindle could be used for games as well as reading books. A whole new world has opened up to me. I travel and waiting in airports, lines, etc., can be distracting and reading can become difficult. Games are easier to keep one’s mind occupied and do not require undivided attention. As a senior, I need to keep my mind active and this does the trick. The bonus is I am learning to play a variety of Solitaire games versus the one game I knew. LOVE IT !!!”

Do you play games on your Kindle? Comment below and let us know.

Michael Kozlowski (5220 Posts)

Michael Kozlowski is the Editor in Chief of Good e-Reader. He has been writing about electronic readers and technology for the last four years. His articles have been picked up by major and local news sources and websites such as the Huffington Post, CNET and more. Michael frequently travels to international events such as IFA, Computex, CES, Book Expo and a myriad of others. If you have any questions about any of his articles, please send an email to

  • Ryno Bones

    I’ve got three or four games on our Kindle. I don’t think my wife is aware that they exist, though.

  • Good E-Reader

    Cool! I don’t think Amazon bothers marketing them or building brand awareness.

  • Juli Monroe

    I’m aware that I can, but I’ve never bothered. My Kindle is for reading. My iPad and Nexus 7 are for games. Tablets just do it better. The slow refresh rate on the Kindle is no problem for reading, but I think it would be awkward for games.

  • Greg L

    When I first got my Paperwhite E-Ink Kindle a couple years ago, I was under the impression that games were not available for it. But a couple days ago I learned that some non-animated puzzle-type games are available. I tried a grid puzzle game, and chess. I’ve been playing them on the daily bus commute to work, where I don’t always feel like reading. They’re great! Animation on an E-Ink Kindle would be terrible, but these games that don’t require animation work fine. The only issue I’ve found is that they seem to drain the battery much faster than reading books.

  • Greg L

    Please consider signing my petition to ask Amazon to bring Active Content to Kindle Voyage and 7th-gen basic Kindle:

  • Teresa Shayne

    My boyfriend likes to steal my phone to play games. He doesn’t want a smartphone. Should I get him a kindle to play his games or do I need to buy something else if he is just wanting to play games and do small searches on the web?