Friday, November 19, 2010

Amazon Announces Direct eBook Gifting (or, "In Your Face, Kobo")

VentureBeat: "I’m not sure what took so long, but Amazon today finally announced the ability to gift Kindle ebooks to anyone — just as you would any other product or service from Amazon’s online store. The company says that the Kindle is 'the most gifted item in the history of' but is still mum on specific sales numbers. While this announcement may help Amazon sell even more Kindles, the company stresses that no Kindle is required to enjoy its ebooks. If anything, the feature is a reminder to consumers that they can read Kindle Books on a variety of platforms — including the iPhone, iPad, Android and BlackBerry phones, as well as on Macs and Windows PCs. To gift a Kindle Book, you simply need to choose the 'Give as a Gift' option for any book in the Kindle Store, and then send the gift to anyone with an email address."

In other words, Kobo held on to this advantage for all of 12 hours or so.