Monday, August 8, 2011

PC Magazine relays tablet ideas from 'multiple sources'

PC Magazine's Tim Bajarin relays coming-tablet talk from "multiple sources"

Not tremendously exciting but Tim Bajarin is passing along what he's hearing.  In essence:

  . center of its design would be on reading books
  . sources say Amazon is using pretty low-cost parts and not using any
      of the major manufacturers.
  . key goal: make the tablet "very inexpensive"
      "as much as 20 to 25 percent below cost"
  . use a new business model to 'own' the Android tablet market
      (not targeting Apple)
  . go for usual low-cost razor idea, with Android Appstore, streaming movie
      and music services as the blades
  . apply users' purchases to their tablet through a 2-yr amortized
      program to cover lost physical cost of tablet and more
  . add in Cloud service revenue + advertising...

As he says, this is what he hears is being 'highly considered.'

This matches general speculations for the last two months.
But with the 'very inexpensive' mantra (definitely a 'prayer'), Amazon may be in a spot if they don't intend this.  And yet, Barnes and Noble has done that with the 7" NookColor (essentially a tablet, or at least many of us use it that way), with its gorgeous screen, at the $250~ price point.

  Amazon would need to make a screen at least as good as that one, in my view.  I am hoping its book-reading capabilities for any 7" tablet will have more basic features (Landscape mode and Zoom-in on images) than the NookColor does, but that's just my own hope there.

  Since Amazon does this with slower e-Ink screens and they do not have to conform to Adobe specs for DRM'd books, they should be able to add these features.  I really like my NookColor but am frustrated that for books with art/history illustrations, I can't zoom in nor view anything in Landscape mode on the smaller screens (even a 7" one is small, alongside a 10" tablet, though nicely portable).

 But Amazon offers so many more features in its e-Ink models than competing models (except touch screen, for now), I would think they'd include more features in their tablet reading too.

  Reminder: With tablets speculation, we're talking about LCD models here, and not the e-Ink devices that are so good for reading outdoors.

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1 comment:

  1. "apply users' purchases to their tablet through a 2-yr amortized
    program to cover lost physical cost of tablet and more"

    Which is exactly what Amazon has avoided doing with Kindle by not requiring users to pay a subscription fee (what this would amount to, as the only way this can work to recover selling below production price is by requiring a minimum number of purchases).


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