How to update an Amazon Kindle Credit: Michael AnsaldoIDGIDG
Business Management

How to update an Amazon Kindle

If you have an Amazon e-reader and haven't updated it in a while, you might find that it doesn't have the latest features, or certain services aren't working properly.

Usually, Kindles update themselves automatically when connected to Wi-Fi, and won't update via 3G, so make sure yours is charged up and connected to a Wi-Fi network.

Below is a table showing the oldest software version your Amazon Kindle e-reader needs to be running. If the number is higher, there's no need to update it.

Amazon says if you have a 7th gen model or newer, no update is required. Also, note that this doesn't apply to Amazon's Fire tablets.

Device model

Software needed


Kindle Keyboard 3rd-gen (2010)

3.4.2 or higher

Use Wi-Fi

Kindle 4th-gen (2011)

4.1.3 or higher

Use Wi-Fi

Kindle 5th-gen (2012)

4.1.3 or higher

Use Wi-Fi

Kindle Touch 4th-gen (2011) or higher

Use Wi-Fi

Kindle Paperwhite 5th-gen (2012) or higher

Use Wi-Fi

Kindle Paperwhite 6th-gen (2013) or higher


Kindle 7th-gen (2014)

Not affected


Kindle Voyage 7th-gen (2014)

Not affected


Kindle Paperwhite 7th-gen (2015)

Not affected


If you're not sure which Kindle you're using, visit Amazon's help page here to see some distinguishing features of each model.

And if you're not sure which version of the software it's running, you should check the following:

Kindle fifth-generation/KindleKeyboard: Press the Menu button on the home screen and select Settings. The software version will be displayed at the bottom of the page.

Kindle Touch/Kindle Paperwhite fifth-generation: Tap the Menu icon on the home screen and choose Settings. Tap the Menu icon, then choose Device Info. 

If you are running older software, see below for instructions on how to update your Kindle.

How to update a Kindle e-reader manually

If your Kindle won't update automatically, you can manually update it. To do so follow these steps:

• Plug the Kindle into its charging adapter to ensure it has enough power to perform the update

• Connect to Wi-Fi

• From the home screen select Menu > Sync > Check for Items

• Leave your Kindle connected until the update is complete. It may restart several times, and you'll see a notification in your Kindle Library once the update has complete.

Thinking about an upgrade? Here are the best e-readers to buy right now.


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