Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Bezos Discounts Kindle-Tablet Competition

Digits - WSJ:
Some industry watchers like to argue about whether one kind of gadget will kill another. Others insist that–just like TV did not kill radio–most new product categories are simply additive, creating more consumer choices. Jeff Bezos seems firmly in the latter camp.

In trumpeting Amazon’s latest sales successes Monday, the e-tailer’s CEO argued that the much-discussed battle between e-readers and tablet computers is a non-issue, because many shoppers are choosing both. ...

“Customers report using their LCD tablets for games, movies, and Web browsing and their Kindles for reading sessions,” Bezos said in a press release, citing the low weight, long battery life and easy-on-the-eye displays of Amazon’s popular gadget. The current price of the Kindle–which now starts at $139, compared to $499 for the least-expensive iPad–means “people don’t have to choose.”

Forrester analyst James McQuivey says Bezos’s pronouncement isn’t such a stretch. According to the research firm’s surveys, roughly a third of iPad buyers also have or intend to buy a Kindle, he says.

“Kindle prices are so cheap now, that it’s not hard to envision buying both devices,” McQuivey says. The iPad, he says, “is a great multi-purpose device that can also read books but is not optimized to do so, leaving plenty of room for Amazon to sell Kindles to iPad owners.” ...