2 Comments

Summary:

Facing steep competition from Apple’s iPad, which can do just about everything a computer can in addition to displaying books, Amazon (NSDQ:…

Jeff Bezos Holding Kindle
photo: Corbis / Mike Segar

Facing steep competition from Apple’s iPad, which can do just about everything a computer can in addition to displaying books, Amazon (NSDQ: AMZN) has decided to evolve the latest Kindle into an even better single-purpose device for less than the cost of an iPod. The new Kindle is an improvement in just about every single way: It is sleeker, lighter, faster while also offering better contrast, more storage and up to one month of battery life on a single charge. The device comes equipped with Wi-Fi and free 3G service for $189 and will be available August 27. The Kindle Wi-Fi-only option will cost $139.

The new Kindle line-up piggy-backs on a number of recent Amazon accomplishments. Amazon said over the past 12 months, customers spent more than $1 billion via mobile devices, including sales by Kindle. Yesterday, it was reported that the Kindle was sold-out, and Stieg Larsson, the author of “The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo,” became the first author to sell more than 1 million Kindle E-books.

An unspecified “millions” of people have already purchased a Kindle, making it the No. 1 bestselling item on Amazon.com for two years running. But with improved technology, and a lower price point, Amazon’s CEO Jeff Bezos said he’s hoping that “many people are going to buy multiple units for the home and family.” Amazon’s new price points are nearing lows in the e-reader world. Last month, Barnes & Noble (NYSE: BKS) lowered the price of its 3G Nook to $199 and its WiFi version to $149. For comparison, a the lowest end iPad and iPod Touch cost $500 and $200, respectively.

The two devices are available for pre-order at www.amazon.com/kindle3G and www.amazon.com/kindleWi-Fi starting tomorrow when the announcement is officially made. It will be available to customers in more than 140 countries on August 27. (Press release via Engadget.)

You’re subscribed! If you like, you can update your settings

By Tricia Duryee

You're subscribed! If you like, you can update your settings

Related stories

  1. This sounds like a great device and I expect it to have success in the market. However, it may be a short term success. Full function tablets with browsers and apps are changing the way we take content on laps. Magazines are morphing onto the iPad as we speak, video is maturing, and a new generation of “books” that converge text, images, and video into long-from content should be expected soon. All of these formats should and will be interactive. On top of that, the delivery and management interfaces are becoming increasingly complex as the amount of available content grows. Can a dedicated reader survive in this environment?

  2. I think Amazon hit a least a triple with this upgraded device. I am glad to see that they did not try to compete on the tablet field. With this price-point and the addition of wi-fi may achieve what Amazon needs to do, capture e-book share. I would not be surprised if in a year as competition heats up if they almost give the thing away to maintain market share.

Comments have been disabled for this post