According to two people familiar with Amazon’s plans, the company is planning to introduce a new, thinner Kindle this August. The new Kindle will mostly likely be in response to traditional competitors of Kindle, like e-readers made by Sony and Barnes & Noble, not the iPad, which is a recent introduction.
The new Kindle will not have a color screen or touchscreen capabilities. It will have a black and white screen with sharper contrast to make e-books look more like printed books. Amazon hopes to eventually make an e-reader with a color screen.
The Kindle and its competitor, the Nook made by Barnes & Noble, both sell for $259. Sony’s e-reader, which has a touchscreen, sells for $199. The iPad starts at $499. According to a research firm, about 6 million e-readers will be sold this year, which is twice the amount sold last year.
Amazon bought a company earlier this year that specializes in touchscreen technology, so a touchscreen e-reader with a color display could be a feasible future product for Amazon.
Via BusinessWeek, image via Amazon.
Barnes & Noble is planning to offer an iPad app, which will give customers the option of buying online books from a source other than Apple’s iBook store. Barnes & Noble already makes eReader software for Windows, Mac, iPhone, iPod Touch, and Blackberry. The app will provide access to more than one million e-books and periodicals from the eBookstore. Books purchased for the Nook, Barnes & Noble’s answer to Amazon’s Kindle, will be accessible through the iPad app.
Since Barnes & Noble plans to target the iPad, Amazon will probably do the same, though it also offers an e-reader. The strategy is sound: even if the iPad becomes the demise of e-readers, the companies will still make money through e-book sales.
Planned iPad competitors abound, as well as planned e-readers. Samsung and Dell have both said that they are planning to release e-readers, though the Samsung e-reader could potentially help Barnes & Noble because the two companies have agreed to partner with each other, with Barnes & Noble agreeing to offer its online store to users of Samsung’s e-reader.
Via InformationWeek, image via Barnes & Noble.