tech

Amazon cuts Kindle price, adds global version

20 Comments

The requested article has expired, and is no longer available. Any related articles, and user comments are shown below.

© Copyright 2009 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

©2019 GPlusMedia Inc.

20 Comments
Login to comment

wibble: that's exactly my point--2 years is a very good run for this Kindle, after which I'm sure they'd have laughed all the way to the bank.

I really, really hope they'd make it more affordable, or a more affordable version... perhaps lose some minor functionalities, but at least put it within mass-market reach.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

people just don't understand the hardware market. Apple makes about 12 cents a song

Margins on hardware vs. consumables vary between markets and vendors for various reasons. For Apple, their iPods are their highest margin item, but iTunes is razor-thin.

In game consoles, client hardware such as the Xbox 360 and the PlayStation 3 are commonly sold below build cost. The increased royalties made from the games (ARV $50) offset the revenue loss.

The Kindle allegedly costs about $189 to build (Slattery). Amazon sold it at what the market would bear, $350, to milk the early adopters, and then lowered the price to widen the tie-in market. I don't know the margins on traditional publisher eBooks, but books through Amazon's Digital Text Platform (DTP) net them 65%, with little overhead and the other 35% as royalty.

eBooks can be anywhere from $0.00 to around $9.99 top ARV. There is one for $6000 though - some nuclear physics book o__O...

As for usage, Kindle SUCKS for academic and reference use due to fragility, slow page turning, lack of color, etc. However, it is perfect for reading scanlations and browsing web on BART. So finally you can get caught up on Kuroshituji!

In conclusion, I would expect Kindle prices to be down for the holiday season, and they may be further depressed in response to SONY activity. $199 may be in the works!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

helloklitty - Obsolete in 2 years. Yes, so what?

nightvision - the kindles are already very practical for educational texts. What needs to be done is similar publisher agreements for educations texts - which are very expensive - to provide the content.

Potentially in boh price, but more importantly convinience, the kindles beat a backpack full of hardcover educational texts any day.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Dear Santa...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Thank you qaz, people just don't understand the hardware market. Apple makes about 12 cents a song, so if you expect them to lose a hundred bucks on hardware fat chance of them making it back.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Yup, obsolete in two years at which time Amazon would've milked this Kindle version dry.

Amazon should also focus on the educational capabilities of their device and make a more affordable mass-market version for students.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Ipods would also be $10 if people weren't willing to pay much more, because they enable users to use I-Tunes - Apple's cash cow.

I don't believe this is true. According to Billboard magazine:

"iTunes earned an operating profit between $160 million and $390 million on revenues of roughly $1.7 billion in the year ended September 30, 2007. They believe that the profit is probably on the lower end of that range-"

"for Apple, iTunes is a drop in the bucket, compared with the business of selling iPods. The company garnered more than $8.3 billion in revenue from iPod sales in the year ended September 2007, and teardowns tend to suggest that profit margins are pretty high on iPods"

full article here: http://news.cnet.com/8301-13526_3-9894585-27.html

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I truly love real books. But these things are practical, affordable and FAST. The world is changing. One might even say the writing is on the Kindle....

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I cannot stand reading text on my Iphone..why anyone would prefer this to a book is beyond me..although I do see the probable environmental benefits.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

obsolete in two years

0 ( +0 / -0 )

And as wibble points out above, compared to the premium associated with buying and shipping books from the U.S. (either directly through Amazon, etc. or a Japanese equivalent), this could be a great deal, at least for books and periodicals for which having the physical copy isn't such a priority.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

As a resident of Japan, I've been curious about when and how Amazon would start making this device available to overseas users (I travel to the U.S. often enough that I could, perhaps, just buy one there, load it up with books, and bring it back here, but it would just be a "dead" storage device, defeating the attractiveness of the Kindle's real-time connectivity and download features).

It seems the new 'international" service still mainly targets U.S.-based users who are traveling abroad, but Japan is shown as being included the wireless service coverage area, and wireless service for downloads is supposedly free of charge (according to Amazon's site information for Japan-based users). However, only English-language publications will be available for download. (No surprise, as Amazon is having as much trouble as Google in dealing with foreign publishers in just about any language but English).

At this price, with free downloads, and a reasonably good library of downloadable content available for a decent price, this is looking more attractive...though I am still basically a BOOK book person.

I agree though, that Amazon should take the razor-and-blades approach (or the printer-and-toner approach, if you like), practically give away the devices and lock in a sustainable revenue stream from content sales.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I like having a real book in my hands, not an electronic device.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I ordered my Kindle when it was announced. Had been hovering on eBooks for a while and $279 was too good to pass up. I buy many books each year and shipping from the States is expensive, but not as expensive as buying here. I believe I'll save a lot of money given the eBook version is usually 40% cheaper than the paper one and I don't pay shipping.

Also the ability to read newspapers and magazines is very attractive. These devices are so different from NetBooks and Laptops it isn't worth comparing them. From a functionality, battery life, speed to operate and ease of use perspective they win hands down - and you have Amazon with the content....

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Competition is good, it'll make Amazon and Sony produce better and (hopefully) cheaper e-ink readers in the future.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

They should try giving them away or selling them for $10, considering they enable users to buy EBooks and make Amazon money. The big $$ is in repeated electronic sales, not one-off sales like the Kindle.

That is a really good comment. When faster Internet connections were beginning to take off in Japan, every weekend you could see Yahoo! BB flogging those ADSL units for a pittance in front of railway stations. Now, they may have lost money up front, but they made a lot as a result of developing a huge installed users base.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Apple is making their own big ass book tablet thingy so Amazon is worried.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

They should try giving them away or selling them for $10, considering they enable users to buy EBooks and make Amazon money. The big $$ is in repeated electronic sales, not one-off sales like the Kindle.

Ipods would also be $10 if people weren't willing to pay much more, because they enable users to use I-Tunes - Apple's cash cow.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

But the Kindle has battery life of 4 days to a month. The target market is quite different.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

You can buy one of those tiny Acer netbooks for that price and read the book files on there, surf the internet, word process etc.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites