Barnes and Noble’s Nook Price Cut makes Amazon scramble
Amazon which was riding high with the success of its e-Book Reader Kindle less than a year ago is now fighting to save its blockbuster product from irrelevance.Barne and Noble which is one of the biggest book publishers in the world and a major rival to Amazon has slashed the prices its own e-book reader.Barnes and Noble’s has reduced the price of Nook to as low as $149 for its cheapest version.This has made Amazon react by reducing the price of Kindle from the $259 to $189 as it suddenly became overpriced compared to Nook.The Kindle price has been slashed by almost 30% as Amazon realizes that it its e-Book Reader has’nt got any features to distinguish itself from the e-Book Reader crowd.Note the price of the Kindle has come down by more than 50% since it was launched two and half years ago.The e-Book Reader looks more and more like a device which will be become a cheap novelty kind of device like the digital photo frame.
A price war is heating up in the electronic reader market, as Amazon cut the price of its Kindle e-reader below $200 Monday just after Barnes & Noble did the same with its competing Nook device.The rapid-fire moves are fanning flames in the still-small but rapidly growing market that the book industry sees as a major part of its future.On Monday afternoon, online retailer Amazon.com Inc. slashed the price of the Kindle by $70 to $189, just a few hours after bookseller Barnes & Noble Inc. reduced the price of the Nook by $60 to $199 and said it would also start selling a new Nook with Wi-Fi access for $149.Both the Kindle and the original Nook can wirelessly download books over high-speed data networks; the Nook also has Wi-Fi access.
Seattle-based Amazon has lowered the Kindle’s price several times since the e-reader with a grayscale screen debuted in 2007 at $399. In October, the online retailer dropped the price to $259 from $299. Amazon also sells a larger-screen Kindle, the Kindle DX, for $489.The Nook was released late last year for $259.Both e-readers are creeping closer to the price of bookstore chain Borders Group Inc.’s new $149 Kobo e-reader, which will be available in July and work with Borders’ online bookstore.
iPad has created a new Tablet Segment which might make e-Book Readers extinct
The advent of iPad has opened a new Technology Segment in between Netbooks and e-Book Readers.With less functionality than a Netbook but more than a e-Book Reader,Apple has made its competitors scramble to come out with their own products in this new created “Tablet” segment.Note before iPad,companies like Microsoft had tried to create Tablets but without much success.Now Kindle seems to be one of the casualties of Apple’s all conquering engineering and marketing juggernaut.Just as “Pagers” disappeared as a product,e-book readers might also disappear quite soon,as customers increasingly flock towards Tablets.Amazon’s first hardware product had been a great success raising hopes for investors of Amazon stock that it might become a technology giant like Google,Apple but it seems that it will have to do with being the world’s top e-commerce retailer for now.
Say the words “tablet computer” and ten bucks says it’s Apple’s iPad that springs to mind. But that doesn’t mean other companies aren’t busy building their own version of a touch-enabled, multimedia-sporting, slab of portable computing goodness.
Dell’s first effort at a tablet will be the Mini 5 (a name that is still in beta) — a slice of plastic and glass with a 5-inch capacitive touchscreen that according to Michael Dell will debut “in a couple of months.”
The Mini 5 will sport a 5-megapixel camera on the back, a separate front-facing camera that can be used for video conferencing, a standard 3.5mm headphone jack, Wi-Fi and 3G connectivity and a Qualcomm Snapdragon 1-GHz processor. The 5-inch screen also means it will be be closer to the Sony PSP in its form factor than the longer legal notepad design of the iPad.
Acer’s been busy doing a presentation over in Beijing today, and the highlight of the show was the first sighting of the company’s 7-inch Android tablet. It’s described by Shufflegazine as “pretty fast with sensitive touch,” though CEO Gianfranco Lanci was apparently reluctant to disclose any of the specs. He told the gathered press to expect it in the fourth quarter of this year, which sounds all kinds of 2000-and-late, but we have to consider the fact that only a couple of months ago Acer was telling us it wasn’t going to enter the tablet realm at all.