Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Remember a World without Kindle?

Amazon introduced the Kindle in November, 2007 and since then, I don't remember a single day that the retailer has not featured a Kindle on its home page. Here's the way Jeff Bezos explained the Kindle when it was first introduced. This wasn't the first e-reader ever marketed, but the Kindle had to educate its target market and sell the category, not just the product.

By mid-2009, everyone knew what a Kindle was . . . and Amazon had cut the price to capture more sales. Fast-forward to October, 2009, and the newest model had an even lower price. By this time, Barnes & Noble was launching its Nook, and the category was well established.

I bring this up because Amazon just announced that it now sells more Kindle electronic books than it does hardcover books. However, since Amazon makes little if any profit on each Kindle e-book, this isn't something that stockholders are likely to cheer--although the customer clearly wins. And competition is getting fiercer, thanks to the iPad, which will likely translate into more price cuts as the holidays approach. Meanwhile, here's a comparison by CNet.

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