Calibre eBook manager hits 0.9, adds better Android phone, tablet support, portable installer

Calibre is probably one of the best tools available for managing and reading eBooks on a PC. Recently the developer released version 0.9, making a great app even better.

Key features in Calibre 0.9 include an enhanced eBook viewer, a portable install option, improved support for sending books to Android phones and tablets, and an improved conversion engine that lets you convert eBooks from one format to another (from EPUB to Mobi, for instance).

calibre

You can use Calibre as a simple library app to keep track of all the eBooks saved on your computer. The app can also download metadata and cover images, so if you have a bunch of random books with inaccurate titles, descriptions, or artwork, you can use Calibre to go online, grab the correct information, and apply it to your files.

The thing I use Calibre for most frequently, though, is converting EPUB files to Amazon Kindle-friendly Mobi files and then emailing the resulting files to my Kindle account so I can read them on my phone, tablet, or Kindle reader.

With version 0.9, you can also convert files to or from Amazon’s new KF8 format using the new AZW3 option. Calibre also now offers better PDF output if you want to convert an EPUB, Mobi, or other file to PDF.

Also new in version 0.9 is full support for Android phones and tablets. You can use the new MTP file transfer protocol to connect your phone or tablet to your PC running Windows Vista or later or Linux to transfer files from your Calibre library to your mobile device.

There’s also a new wireless device driver that lets you use the $3 Calibre Companion app for Android. This lets you fire up an app on your phone or tablet, browse your library, and transfer books without a cable.

Other updates in the latest version of Calibre include:

  • There’s an improved eBook viewer that supports multiple column views.
  • Use a portable installer that lets you install Calibre on a PC without writing any files to the registry. You can also use this to install Calibre on a USB flash drive which you can carry with you and use on multiple computers.
  • Monitor a specific folder for new files and add books automatically.
  • Search has been improved to support un-accented characters so you can look for books with “ñ” in the name by searching for “n.”

Calibre is available as a free download for Windows, Mac and Linux.

via The Digital Reader (where you can also find tips for using Calibre to strip DRM from NOOK or Kindle books).