This is beyond ridiculous now. Amazon continues to feel the need to boast — and it seems understandably — about their Kindle sales. But they continue to refuse to give actual sales numbers to back up the boasting.
The latest press release says that “Throughout December, customers purchased well over 1 million Kindle devices per week.” For you non-math majors, that means Amazon has sold at least 4 million Kindles (well, perhaps just 3 million as December isn’t quite over yet, but we’ll give them the benefit of the doubt).
This is an improvement over “4x of great”, but it’s still oddly obtuse.
Who knows what “well over” means, I imagine it’s not 2 million, or they’d presumably say that. But who knows? It’s a number definitely south of infinity — I think.
It’s also worth noting that the 1 million+ per week number is spread across the entire line — Kindle Fire, Kindle Touch, and the regular Kindle. Amazon says that their sales figures are in that order, but the number everyone wants is the Kindle Fire sales so they can compare it to other Android tablets. And of course, the iPad.
The latter may be exactly why Amazon continues to skirt around actual numbers (while getting a bit more specific each time). Let’s assume the Kindle Fire doesn’t quite make up 50% of the 1 million+ per week Kindle sales (though again, who knows). Let’s say it has been selling at the rate of 500K units a week. That’s 2 million sold in December. The iPad likely killed that number. It may have beaten that number on one of the big single shopping days alone.
I view the Kindle Fire and the iPad as different devices and so do many people. But as tablets, they’re inevitably going to be compared. And I think it’s fair to think that many people bought one instead of the other this holiday season. With that in mind, Amazon probably wouldn’t want to release concrete numbers that get blown away by a competitor. Especially when the competitor is selling their device for $300 more.
So kudos on your vaguely awesome sales Amazon. I bought a Kindle Touch and I love it. I’m sure the other 100,000 to 2 million customers that bought one feel the same.