Monday, May 4, 2009

Big Screen Kindle announcement Wednesday?

Well, that's what several papers are reporting.  This was more or less announced some months ago about Bezos' conversations with textbook companies and the goal of a larger unit for textbooks and periodicals coming out by Xmas. But the announcement in only April will likely involve more details already (and a possibly earlier release date?).  Maybe to get ahead of Plastic Logic's goal for early 2010?  And before all the newspapers fail?  Hearst has been putting heavy money behind E-Ink (see previous articles).

Huffington Post's Dave Burdick reports that the announcement is likely to be about the big-screen Kindle's "arrival at universities."

While mulling the more lucrative margins of textbook sales, he quotes the New York Times article today:
As early as this week, according to people briefed on the online retailer's plans, Amazon will introduce a larger version of its Kindle wireless device tailored for displaying newspapers, magazines and perhaps textbooks ...

In total, six universities are involved in the project, according to people briefed on the matter. They are Case Western, Pace University, Princeton University, Reed College, Darden School at the University of Virginia, and Arizona State University.
Some would hope it also entails some improvements on the Kindle 2 requested, but there's been no mention of that so far.

Also, pricing will be interesting.  Other big-screen units planned and some already available (iRex) but without wireless, search capabilities, and inline-dictionaries (all strengths of Amazon's Kindles) are charging from $600 to $1000+.  Will newspapers subsidize some of the cost for their readers, when they are already losing millions per year?

The announcement timing is intriguing seeing that Apple's June announcement had been getting the headlines in that their hoped-for MediaPad (no hard news on that yet) might be released via Verizon, with a wished-for larger screen and wider range of offerings but only via WiFi vs Amazon's always "On" wireless.

And then there is EFD or Electronic Fluid Display (Electrofluidic Display Technology, involving color) on the horizon but still very much in development including improving the contrast and then getting it integrated into actual devices.  But apparently it could support the Kindle someday.

ENGADGET posted some info from the Wall Street Journal as well as the NYTimes and is offering preview photos, though they ask if it will be 9.7" units, so the photos may be iffy.  
The one on the right looks out of proportion, with the current unit 8" and the new one said to be 9.7"...
  SeekingAlpha reminds us that Engadget pointed out the NYTimes is lowering its subscription price from $14 to $10 (that would include Sundays and many have requested this before subscribing - so natural customer resistance has an effect).  They say in order for amazon to keep the price close, for the larger screen, they'd have to cut out something like wireless, but the college communities are filled with wi-fi spots, so wireless is superfluous there.  WiFi feature rather than 24/7 Wireless?  They add Amazon seems to be doing a front-run around the rumored iPod mediapad/tablet, with the spiffed up web browser and larger screen but still with a [smaller] keyboard.
  The Moderate Voice has an interesting set of thoughts. Below are ways to Share this post if you'd like others to see it.
-- The Send to Kindle button works well only on Firefox currently.

Send to Kindle

(Older posts have older Kindle model info. For latest models, see CURRENT KINDLES page. )
If interested, you can also follow my add'l blog-related news at Facebook and Twitter
Questions & feedback are welcome in the Comment areas (tho' spam is deleted). Thanks!

No comments:

Post a Comment

NOTE: TO AVOID SPAM being posted instantly, this blog uses the "DELAY" feature.

Am often away much of the day, and postings won't show up right away. Posts done to use referrer-links may never show up.

Usually, am online enough to release comments within a day though, so the hard-to-read match-text tests for commenting won't be needed this way.

Feedback and questions are welcome. Thanks for participating.

Technical Problems?
If you're having problems leaving a Comment, Google's blogger-help asks that you clear the '' cookies on your browser's Tools or Options menu bar and that will fix the Comment-box problems (until they have a permanent fix).

IF that doesn't work either, then UNcheck the "keep me signed in" box -- Google-help says that should allow your comment to post (it's a workaround to a current bug).
Apologies for the problems.

TIP: There's a size limit. If longer than 3500 characters or so, in a text editor, make two posts out of it.

[Valid RSS]