Too many Kindles to choose from?

Though Amazon’s focus is on Kindle 3 it’s hard not to notice the plethora of options if you’re thinking about getting a Kindle -

  1. Kindle 3 for $189.
  2. Kindle WiFi for $139.
  3. Kindle DX 2 for $379.
  4. Kindle 3 in white.
  5. Kindle 2 International (used or refurbished).
  6. Kindle 2 US (used or sometimes refurbished).
  7. Kindle DX 1 (used or refurbished).
  8. Kindle 1 (used).

You could argue that just the first 4 choices are valid since they are the only new ones and my argument would be that it’s still 2 choices too many.

Kindle 3 or WiFi and Kindle white or graphite are confusing most people

This might seem trivial – However, lots and lots of people are in analysis paralysis about whether to get the white Kindle 3 or the graphite Kindle 3. Even more are trying to decide whether they need 3G or not. To make things worse it isn’t very clear what 3G means, what WiFi means, and the benefits of each. Same with the colors.

Have written about both Kindle 3G or WiFi and Kindle graphite or white. However, this information and much more detailed, conclusive information needs to be on the Amazon site.

The product page should clearly spell out exactly what WiFi means and what it means to not have the 3G capability. It should also illustrate the difference graphite makes so that users who choose white know what they’re missing out on.

An even better solution would be to eliminate the number of options.

Surely, you jest about eliminating the white Kindle 3?

Actually, no. People decide they want to buy the Kindle 3 and then get stuck on the WiFi vs 3G and white vs graphite questions.

It’s hard to eliminate the WiFi or 3G because there’s a big price difference. However, Amazon had the gumption to go with a white only Kindle and now it needs to go with a graphite only Kindle.

Will people complain? Yes. 

Kindle owners have begun to think the white color of the Kindle has magical properties. It doesn’t.

We need to get rid of the refurbished Kindles too

The Kindle WiFi is at $139 and that’s cheap enough – it’s time we retired a few of the older models.

It’s purely a ‘make things easy for the user’ decision. The more options you get the more confused you become and the harder it is to decide. 2-3 options are better than having no choice – However, when there are 7 to 8 options it becomes confusing.

It also causes problems because the refurbished Kindles make users question the value proposition of the new Kindles.

The flip side – Is it an advantage that users are fixated on one Kindle versus another Kindle?

Yes. Every user fixated on Kindle 3G or WiFi is a user not thinking Kindle vs Nook.

However, just the Kindle 3 vs Kindle WiFi decision by itself is enough to eternally confound users. The other decisions should be eliminated.

Even if Amazon stripped things down to graphite Kindle 3, graphite Kindle DX 2, and Kindle WiFi, there would still be 6 possible decision paths for users. With 8 options we get 40,320 combinations.

It becomes a never-ending cycle of wondering whether the $249 Kindle DX 1 (refurbished) is a better option than the $189 Kindle 3 or if the $109 Kindle 2 (US, refurbished) will re-appear or perhaps the Kindle WiFi is best as who knows what 3G is and it’s probably not very useful.

So we arrive at a straightforward recommendation for Amazon. Cut down the options to 3 Kindles – Kindle 3 in 1 color, Kindle WiFi, and Kindle DX 2, and that’s it.

8 Responses

  1. Good lord, you took something amazingly simple and turned it into a hogwash of confusion.

    The whole point of this almost illegible article seems to simply say that there are too many options, rather than simply comparing features.

    • Comparing features?
      Why would you think the post was about comparing features?

      I do appreciate your comment as feedback is always appreciated.

      • Sorry I didn’t mean to sound like a dick.

        From the intro I thought you where going to compare differences and help me decide. Instead I sort of came away with nothing after reading the article.

      • Well, there are lots of comparison posts. What exactly are you choosing between.

        There’s Kindle 3G or WiFi. Also Kindle 3 vs Nook.
        Depending on which eReaders you have narrowed it down to can point you to the corresponding comparison post.

  2. Too many Kindles? No, too many posts on your blog. I enjoy reading your stuff most of the time, but a day can’t go by without 3 or 4 posts. You also tend to write very LONGGG and detailed posts, which are often (as the other commenter pointed out) repetitious and confusing.

    Also, I have to be honest. How many ways can you write the same material? Every other post seems like another I just read – only worded a bit differently. I read your blog in a feedreader (as many do) and I just get overloaded with your stuff and it’s not like there is often “breaking news” that demands so many posts of such great length and detail.

    Thanks for letting me get this off my chest..

    • You’re free to stop reading the blog.

      Seriously, there must be an unsubscribe button – feel free to click it.

      I’m leaving your comment in so that everyone who doesn’t enjoy reading the posts can stop reading the blog rather than continue to suffer from the confused and repetitious posts. Appreciate your feedback.

      • Oh well thankfully not everyone feels this way! I like all the different posts and appreciate the detail. If other people don’t like it – don’t read it then. Just because a blog post is there doesn’t mean you have to read it! Each to their own I suppose but I think your doing a stellar job!

      • thanks Marie. I was pretty upset yesterday so your comment really helps.
        It’s difficult to know when the feedback is valid and when it’s just a few people that are upset at a post or by some particular thing.

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