#kindle fire

Anonymous asked:

RE: Kindle Fire As Swag. Makes sense in some ways, not in others. Unlike a free shirt, the Kindle Fire is NOT free. I have a hard time believing that a person's decision to buy one would not affect whether they buy an iPad too. Maybe I'm missing something. I currently don't own a tablet but am considering getting in at a low price point (a Nexus 7, Kindle Fire, or a mini iPad, maybe). If I end up going Fire, I will be doing so INSTEAD of an iPad. It's a $200+ investment, not a free shirt.

Sure, but in an ideal world, Amazon would be able to give it away for free. They’re getting close with the Kindle eReaders!

The point is that it’s an entirely different model and that matters to both sides of the equation. Kindle Fire sales so far have no impacted iPad sales, and like Dediu, I expect that non-trend to continue. But on the flip side, I could see iPad mini sales hurting Kindle Fire sales…

Horace Dediu on the Kindle Fire vs. the iPad:

So one way to think of the Fire is as a promotional item (aka swag) for another business (Amazon.com). Using this frame of mind, assessing its “threat” to another business which charges for the product itself is like assessing whether free t-shirts from trade shows affect the sales of clothing or apparel in general. They do, but mostly the sale of cheap t-shirts. I doubt that people stop buying more functional clothing because they have hundreds of free t-shirts. And then there’s the problem of looking like an advertisement.

Fascinating interview with Jeff Bezos. On the topic of losing money on the Kindles, he notes:

We don’t disclose the exact bill and materials, so I can’t answer that. But we don’t want to lose a lot of money on the device because then we’d really hate it if you put it in the desk drawer. On the other hand, if you make a lot of money on the device, I believe you haven’t earned your money on it yet, and then you’ve incentivized them (the customers) to stay on the upgrade treadmill that I mentioned today.

Translation: we are making some money, but not a lot. (Though it’s not clear the Kindle eReader vs. Kindle Fire breakdown there.)

And on the topic of the $499 cost of Kindle Fire HD subsidizing the data plan, Bezos:

I’m not going to break out the economics of any particular piece with you, but you’re right, it’s an astonishing price point.

Translation: Likely yes.

Doing The Math

With the iPad, AT&T offers 250 MB of data a month for $15 a month (technically, $14.99, which is odd since every other deal is a round number). With the Kindle Fire HD, AT&T offers 250 MB of data for $50 a year. So that’s $180 a year versus $50 a year for the same data on the two different devices.

Perhaps not coincidentally, when you factor out the storage markup, Amazon is charging users $130 to upgrade to the Kindle Fire HD with 4G/LTE. 

So it’s possible that Amazon is passing the entire $130 from consumers over to AT&T to secure their good-looking deal. But if that’s the case, why not either tack-on or eat the remaining $50?

It’s just another layer of complexity for the consumer and it’s a weird one since most consumers are going to want more than 250 MB of data a month with an LTE connection. In fact, it’s such a weirdly small amount, that Verizon doesn’t even offer the option. 

Again, I just don’t get it.

It seems to me that unlike so many other Apple rivals, Amazon actually does a good job with buzz surrounding their events. Tonight, they debuted a commercial during the NFL kickoff that clearly teases out some new Kindles (the current Kindle Touch readers have a silver bezel, not the charcoal one found in the commercial — which looks great).
This isn’t something Apple would do, but that’s fine. No one says everyone has to do everything exactly as Apple would do it (no, not even me) — in fact, I think it’s good that Amazon has their own style. 
As a result, I find myself actually interested/excited for what they announce tomorrow. New Kindles? New Kindle Fires (though I disagree with Bryan Bishop, I think the commercial still only shows one size, as was previously reported by CNet — we’ll see)? A phone?!

It seems to me that unlike so many other Apple rivals, Amazon actually does a good job with buzz surrounding their events. Tonight, they debuted a commercial during the NFL kickoff that clearly teases out some new Kindles (the current Kindle Touch readers have a silver bezel, not the charcoal one found in the commercial — which looks great).

This isn’t something Apple would do, but that’s fine. No one says everyone has to do everything exactly as Apple would do it (no, not even me) — in fact, I think it’s good that Amazon has their own style. 

As a result, I find myself actually interested/excited for what they announce tomorrow. New Kindles? New Kindle Fires (though I disagree with Bryan Bishop, I think the commercial still only shows one size, as was previously reported by CNet — we’ll see)? A phone?!

Roger Cheng and Steve Musli:

Despite speculation that Amazon was preparing a larger 8.9 or 10-inch version, the company will only unveil a new 7-inch Kindle Fire and a slightly revamped version of the original tablet in an event scheduled for next week, according to a person who has seen the products.

As I reported a year ago, Amazon has been thinking about and testing a 10-inch tablet for a long time. They initially planned to release it alongside the Kindle Fire, but the plan quickly changed to early 2012. Then they pushed it again. Now they’re balking again, apparently. 

Why?

Hard to know for sure, but my guess would be that Amazon more than has their hands full just trying to compete in the 7-inch tablet space. Google is now their main competitor there, and Apple will enter soon. No point in launching a new offensive against a deeply entrenched product (the 9.7-inch iPad) and a soon-to-be huge challenger (Microsoft, with the Surface) when you’re playing defense on the other front.

Put another way: try to win one war before you find yourself in the middle of two (or three, with a smartphone). 

The Kindle Fire is not nearly as good as the Nexus 7 — it’s just not even close, really. The updated one? We’ll see. But if Apple is entering the space as well, you know they have to believe they have a winner too. 

So instead, it appears Amazon is going to take a different approach — the approach they know well: discount, discount, discount. A $150 ad-supported Kindle Fire would be very attractive this holiday seasons for two reasons:

1) $150

2) Amazon.com

If successful, it could force Google’s hand to further eat costs with the Nexus 7. And the race to the bottom will be on. (Apple, of course, won’t play that game — I’m still betting the iPad mini comes in closer to $249 or even $299.)

Jim Dalrymple rightfully destroys Amazon’s PR this morning.

Yes, the Kindle Fire is “sold out” — just as the Microsoft Kin, the Palm Pre, and the original iPhone are “sold out”. They’re “sold out” because Amazon has stopped fucking making them ahead of the new one due next week!

As for the 22% market share thing, who the hell knows. That sounds way too high, but since Amazon won’t share any actual sales numbers they can essentially say whatever they want. Worse, they don’t even disclose where the 22% number came from. If it’s not from a third party, presumably it’s from Amazon itself. Maybe the Kindle Fire is accounting for 22% of tablet sales on Amazon.com — but that doesn’t make sense either given the sub-headline: “10 of the top 10 best-selling items on Amazon since Kindle Fire launched are Kindle devices and content”. That means the Kindle Fire would have to be outselling the iPad on Amazon. Also, Amazon doesn’t say “22% of tablets sales on Amazon”, they just say “22% of U.S. tablet sales”, period.

I think it’s fair to say they have captured 22% of the market for tablets whose manufacturers refuse to disclose sales numbers. Also, 22% of the market for tablets that begin with “K” seems likely. 11 out of 10 experts agree.