Amazon warns: Got a pre-2013 Kindle? You must patch NOW, or else!

Got an Amazon Kindle from before 2013? You need an update by 3/22. Or you'll lose the cloud.

Amazon Kindle update
Credit:, Inc.

Your older Amazon Kindle will lose access to the cloud, unless you update yours before March 23. If you miss the date, you're forced to mess around with USB leads.

Ain't nobody got time for that. In IT Blogwatch, bloggers make like Sweet Brown.

curated these bloggy bits for your entertainment. Not to mention: Gender-neutral bathrooms

What's the craic? Jon Fingas warns that Your old Amazon Kindle needs an update:

Most Kindle updates focus on nice-to-have improvements, but this is one you won't want to ignore. ... Owners of pre-2013 Kindles...(the original Kindle Paperwhite and earlier)...need to update. [Or] you'll lose access to the Kindle Store...and anything else that depends on Kindle services.

You can still recover if you're willing to manually update with a USB cable. [But it's] a blunt reminder that cloud-connected devices won't work forever [without] long-term support.

Dante D'Orazio kindles the inferno: [You're fired -Ed.]

That old Kindle sitting in your desk drawer is about to get locked out. ... That means, most importantly, that you won't be able to download new books...if you do not update your Kindle [by] Tuesday.

All Kindles download and install...updates automatically if they're connected to Wi-Fi. [You can] make it pull the new update by clicking "Sync and Check for Items."

But why? JC Torres sounds worried—Update your old Amazon Kindle:

Most of the time, software updates are optional. ... Amazon isn't really giving out a reason why...only that it's doing so, regardless of user opinion.

Whether or not a Kindle has a built-in 3G connection, users will only be able to update via Wi-Fi. ... Users who do not upgrade...will be met with: ... "Your Kindle is unable to connect at this time. Please make sure you are within wireless range and try again."

So run do not walk, eh? James Peckham pecks at his keyboard, to warn that You could be stopped from buying books:

If you own a pre-2013 Amazon may be stopped from downloading purchased books or buying new ones. ... If your Kindle is affected, Amazon will have already sent an email to you.

If you don't update over-the-air by the cut-off date you'll have to...update via a USB connection. [But] we wouldn't recommend leaving it that long.

Sounds scary. And Jeff's anonymous gnomes issue this warning—Critical Software Update:

If you see this message on your will need to manually install the latest software update. ... The following devices require the latest software version:

Kindle 1st Generation (2007) ... Kindle 2nd Generation (2009) ... Kindle DX 2nd Generation (2009) ... Kindle Keyboard 3rd Generation (2010) ... Kindle 4th Generation (2011) ... Kindle 5th Generation (2012) ... Kindle Touch 4th Generation (2011) ... Kindle Paperwhite 5th Generation (2012).

You will get a final confirmation letter...on your device when the update is complete. You can find [it] by viewing all items in your Kindle Library, and then Recent.

But the Amazon forums are full of confused, worried people. For example, Deanna Larson, who seems to speak for many, many others:

I have received 2 emails now to account. They tell me I have not synced for the new update. ... Since I am always connected to WiFi...did it upload automatically?

[I] but never received the letter on my kindle stating it had upgraded. ... How, on earth, do I KNOW FOR SURE...and that I won't have problems after 3-22-16?

Update: Many of the other forum posts also make uncomfortable reading. Aimee Picchi is keen—Deadline nears for Kindle owners:

Even though Amazon sent out emails to is far from certain how many consumers read the notices. [And] many consumers appear to be confused...according to the growing number of questions.

Some Kindle owners are confused...or were stymied when they sought to update. ... Sales of e-books slid last year, amid sharply increased prices for new releases.

And Finally…

This is precisely why we need gender-neutral bathrooms

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Opinions expressed may not represent those of Computerworld. Ask your doctor before reading. Your mileage may vary. E&OE.

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