7" Kindle Tablet, 6" Sony Reader, Kindle Tablet Thoughts

DigiTimes speculates that Amazon’s 7″ Kindle Tablet will start shipping in October 2011. It also suggests that the 10″ Kindle Tablet will arrive in early 2012. The latter seems very likely since we can depend on Amazon to miss the opportunity to make the most of this Holiday Season – choosing instead to launch around the same time as the iPad 3.

What better way to make things tough for yourself than launch your 1st generation 10″ Kindle Tablet around the same time as the third generation iPad 3?

DigiTimes seems pretty confident that the 7″ Kindle Tablet will be shipping in October

Amazon’s 7-inch tablet PC, which is supplied by Quanta Computer, is expected to start shipping in October, the sources added.

It also throws in some rather impressive-sounding Kindle sales estimates –

In addition to the tablet PC, Amazon also outsources its Kindle e-book reader to Foxconn with an estimated volume of 15-18 million units, accounting for 60-70% of global e-book reader shipments of 25-30 million units in 2011.

15 to 18 million units in 2011 for just the Kindle alone? That’s a lot of people wondering why there are Ads in their screensavers.

What do we know about the Kindle Tablet so far?

It’s a confusing and completely undependable list of oddities –

  1. There are actually two Kindle Tablets – a 7″ and a 10″.
  2. The Tablets might be called Hollywood or Scribe.
  3. The 7″ might be targeted at the Nook Color.
  4. The 10″ is probably targeted at the Android Tablet space. Some people think it’s targeted at the iPad.
  5. Kindle Tablet might see 5 million or so units sold in 2011. This is probably an analyst compensating for missing on Kindle sales projections.
  6. The 7″ Tablet has a dual core processor while the 10″ tablet has a quad-core processor. Which matches perfectly the number of people interested in how many cores the processor of their Tablet has – somewhere between 2 and 4.
  7. There is strong speculation that Amazon will price its Tablets much cheaper than the iPad. ‘Journalists’ claim it will be ‘hundreds of dollars’ lower.
  8. There is weak speculation that the 7″ Tablet will come in at $249 and will challenge the Nook Color.
  9. One group claims the Kindle Tablet is aimed at video and TV show viewing. Another group claims that the Kindle Tablet will actually be a reading tablet. Given that Amazon has to take on both the 7″ Nook Color and the 10″ iPad it’s quite possible that both groups of people are correct and Amazon has one arrow earmarked for each of its rivals.

It’s all very confusing. The Kindle Tablet is all things to all people. Of course, it’s going to come out and leave some people very disappointed by its inability to butter your toast on the right side.

Sony releases a new eReader

Yes, Sony is still releasing eReaders. Yes, ‘journalists’ are again anointing a Sony eReader as the new ‘Kindle Killer’.

Let’s think about this again – Sony got whipped by Amazon, then by B&N, and then by Kobo. Yet, its latest eReader is suddenly a ‘Kindle Killer’ because … It has wireless library book downloads.

Didn’t see that coming.

4 years after Amazon released the Kindle with wireless book downloads via 3G we have Sony offering wireless library book downloads via WiFi. The Convenience. The Promptness of the Response. How could any company possibly compete with Sony when within the ludicrously short time-span of 4 years Sony has sort of responded to free 3G book downloads?

Gizmodo can’t decide whether to make fun of it or to consider it a threat to the Kindle. Here is some of what it writes –

The PRS-T1, though, could be Sony’s comeback kid.

The six-inch E-ink ebook reader is the world’s lightest at that size, and its touchscreen display means …

Does Sony really expect to compete by promoting the PRS-T1 as ‘the lightest eReader in the world’ and does it really think ‘wireless library downloads’ are a meaningful feature?

Sometimes it’s the Difficult Features that make the Difference

Amazon’s 3G based book downloads feature is a big competitive advantage. Not just because it offers incredible convenience but also because very few companies are willing to go through the level of pain that dealing with wireless providers entails.

Can you imagine working with a beast like AT&T and negotiating all sorts of torturous agreements just so that users can get books wirelessly? All that pain just to save users the effort of finding a PC or a digital kiosk – that’s madness.

eReader makers not named Amazon either won’t go to the trouble (Sony) or found it too painful (B&N). Which leaves Amazon with a pretty big competitive advantage.

The Kindle says – If you can get a cellphone signal then you can get your book in 60 seconds.

Sony says – Customers aren’t really asking for 3G downloads.

That is the real reason Sony doesn’t have much of a chance – It just isn’t willing to do the really tough stuff. It hasn’t been willing to do the really tough stuff since November 2007 and that’s why it’s gone from being the first entrant in the market to a #3 or #4 player.

The Delay in the launch of the Kindle Tablet is Lowering its Probability of Success

Things are set up beautifully right now – Nook Color is selling well, the HP TouchPad at $100 took off so fast that HP is thinking about un-killing the TouchPad, companies like Asus are selling half a million Tablets a month (supposedly).

Couple that with the iPad 3 (with its Retina Display and Quadruple Face Time) being delayed to 2012.

Right now is the perfect time for Amazon to launch. Both Tablets (if there really are two Tablets).

What in the world is Amazon waiting for? For B&N to release the Nook Color 2 and take away all the attention? For the iPad 3 to launch so that Amazon can blame it if things don’t take off? For another company to steal the perfect opportunity? Some sort of fear that it might turn into a hardware manufacturer?

It’s incredibly strange that Amazon is unable to ship a Kindle Tablet when B&N was able to ship a really good reading tablet nearly a year ago.

If Amazon does ship a very solid, very reasonably priced Kindle Tablet in October it will have a huge hit on its hands. The demand is there. If it waits until early 2012 to ship one or both of its Kindle Tablets then it will miss out on the Holiday Season and also gift Apple most of the people who would have bought a 10″ Kindle Tablet this year. Holiday Season 2011 is it for Amazon’s Tablet hopes – If it doesn’t ship this year, it’s going to be in very big trouble (and not even Mirasol supermagicalfaeriedust screens with generous helpings of PrimeRib will be able to save it).

7 thoughts on “7" Kindle Tablet, 6" Sony Reader, Kindle Tablet Thoughts”

  1. too much hype over amazon’s tablet imho. I don’t even care about it. I only care about the next EINK-type kindle, not LCD screen

  2. Analysis is spot on. Can’t imagine what Bezos is waiting for. I do care about the Kindle/Amazon Tablet because I want someone else to succeed in this market other than Apple, even though I have an iPad 2 and love it. Competition is good, but Amazon is blowing their chances right when the market is perfectly primed for their product. As for Sony, I HAD a Sony eReader years before they officially released one; the Clie. I had several in fact. But when they canceled the Clie, just as they’ve done countlessother product lines that were at the head of their class, I decided to not buy Sony again, and haven’t.

  3. odddddd. I ordered a kindle as a gift 4 days ago, shows instock… BUT STILL has not shipped….. wonder if I should cancel it?????

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