Monday, August 13, 2012

Kindle News: B&N lowers pricing on its current Nooks, and some Kindles are still missing in action. Amazon releases e-textbooks at large discounts. UPDATE


  Probably in anticipation of Amazon's heavily rumored introduction of new Kindle models, Barnes & Noble cut prices on its Nook Tablet with 16 gigs of memory, to $199 from $249,
Reuter reports
, and they lowered the price of the 8 gig Nook Tablet to $179 from $199. Its slower NookColor new price is $149.

  The Google Nexus, a year later, with better hardware and a newer operating system + full access to Google's own Google Play Android "market," of course, had something to do with it as well.  It's also back-to-school preparation time and the e-reader makers seem to be racing to a September finish line.

  For all we know, B&N may be preparing a new lineup too, though their Nook expenses were holding them back in the last year as it was.  However, they've tended to suddenly release new products earlier than Amazon, once they got into the game.

Update Monday 8/13 2:25pm - The main Kindlestore page was showing two e-Ink Kindles a few minutes ago, the Kindle Touch WiFi (to ship in 2-3 days) and the Kindle Touch 3G/WiFi, which is suddenly noted as "In stock" now.
It just switched only to Kindle Basic and Kindle Fire.  I think they're playing with the crowd :-) [End of update]

Earlier today
  In the meantime, some news sites finally noticed, this weekend, some out-of-stock and possibly no longer available (in their current versions) e-Ink Kindles, a situation that was highlighted in this blog on August 2 plus the 40% sale on some Kindles and accessories, and they agree that we're likely to see a different lineup sooner than later.  At least we hope so.

  The Verge noticed that Amazon's Kindle lineup is missing a picture of the Kindle Keyboard WiFi-only model, showing only the Kindle Keyboard 3G/WiFi.

  But, starting April 20, I've not listed the WiFi-only Kindle Keyboard in my regular blog article footers or my blog's reference-column because the Kindle Touch 3G models were finally being shipped to the 175+ countries and Amazon changed its "Family" photo lineup at that time, causing me to remove the listing for the WiFi Kindle Keyboard.

  That model was wholly de-emphasized when Amazon announced on March 27 that 175+ countries would get the Kindle Touch 3G models, which signaled a shift globally from the Keyboard WiFi to the Kindle Touch 3G, as only the 3G model of the Kindle Touch was announced as available to all those countries.  And Amazon kept the Kindle Keyboard 3G available here and in the UK.

  At exactly that time, Amazon had a significant software update on the Kindle Touch 3G - to v5.10 - and, in the April 21 blog article listing all the enhancements not highlighted in the announcement the day before, I described the "unsung" improvements.

  In the meantime the product page for the WiFi-only Kindle Keyboard remains, but that US model is now offered only by third-party sellers.  The 3G Keyboard model remains in the Kindle Family photo header, and Jeff Bezos in his interview with Len Edgerly recently explained why the free 3G feature for books and Wikipedia has continued to be important to Amazon.  The 3G Keyboard still allows free but slow web browsing in 60+ countries.

  The one-day Kindle DX Graphite $110 discount the other day was beat by a $120 discount on that model during Black Friday week 2011.

  The Barnes and Noble price cuts will put more pressure on Amazon's pricing.

  The rumored Apple 7" mini-tablet (which Apple is suddenly eager to tell everyone Steve Jobs didn't completely pooh pooh after all) has been expected to be announced in September.  Apple's profit margins are huge, so if they try to even nearly match Google's Nexus in pricing and especially B&N's or Amazon's, that'll affect Apple's expected margins overall.  Do they really want all the tablet markets?  Maybe.  Why not?  But it might not be the best thing for their stockholders.

Amazon releases line of e-Textbooks at big discounts
On Tuesday, Collegiate Times's Michelle Sutherland reports, Amazon released Kindle editions of textbooks, at large discounts.  They'll be offered for sale at up to 60% off the original price, and rentals will be discounted at up to 80%.
  An additional feature is "First chapter free: Get free samples" before deciding to buy or rent.

While B&N only offers textbook for its Nook Study app, available only on PCs and Macs (not available for the Nook itself) and Apple is partnering with several publishers to create textbooks for iPad with embedded movies and infographics, the Kindle version, Sutherland writes, has a different approach:
' Kindle versions will be static, or similar to a print textbook but without the weight and formatted to size.

  The Kindle version will be able to highlight and add post-its and bookmarks, like it already can with its regular e-books.  The NOOK Study app also offers those same options [on PCs and Macs].
  Despite the iPad's additional features, many college students may opt for the Kindle Fire because of it’s price; the Kindle Fire is roughly half of that of an iPad. '

Kindle Fire  7" tablet - $199
Kindle NoTouch ("Kindle") - $79/$109
Kindle Touch, WiFi
- $99/$139
Kindle Touch, 3G/WiFi - $149/$189
Kindle Keybd 3G - $189, Free, slow web
Kindle DX - $379, Free, slow web
Kindle Basic, NoTouch - £89
Kindle Touch WiFi, UK - £109
Kindle Touch 3G/WiFi, UK - £169
Kindle Keyboard 3G, UK - £149
  Keybd: w/ Free, slow 3G WEB
OTHER International
Kindle NoTouch Basic - $109
Kindle Touch WiFi - $139
Kindle Touch 3G/WiFi - $189
Kindle Keybd 3G - $189
  Keybd: w/ Free, slow 3G WEB

  For daily free ebooks, check the following links:
Temporarily-free books - Non-classics
USA: by:
   Publication Date  
   Bestselling   High-ratings

UK: PubDate   Popular
The Kindle Daily Deal
What is 3G? and "WiFi"?       Battery Care
Highly-rated under $1,  Newest: $1-$2, $2-$3
Most Popular Free K-Books
U.S. & Int'l (NOT UK):
   Top 100 free
   Top 100 free
USEFUL for your Kindle Keyboard(U.S. only, currently):
  99c Notepad 1.1,   99c Calculator,
  99c Calendar,   99c Converter

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  1. Kindle Touch 3G just "re-appeared" today, with a slight delay (my browser shows a 1-2 day processing delay). Still hoping that all the oddness with changing availability, 40% off and $110 off sales, and other industry rumors point to a new Kindle lineup on the horizon!

    1. And, after I wrote the reply to you a few minutes ago, I looked, and the KTouch 3G is now showing 7-10 days again at 1:17 PM Tuesday afternoon.

  2. Tyler, yes - I wrote an update yesterday (in red) to say that it was saying now that the KTouch 3g was "in stock" -- then last night they changed it again, that time saying it would ship in 7-10 days. And now you're reporting 1-2 days when you looked. Wow. What are they doing back there? But I'm hoping it's as you say :-)


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