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Amazon To Launch Kindle Tablet?

samzenpus posted more than 2 years ago | from the getting-in-on-the-game dept.

Handhelds 140

Rumors abound that Amazon wants a taste of the tablet market and will unveil a Kindle Tablet later this week. The prevailing thought is Amazon will offer a device that will cost under $300 and will tether closely to its music, movie and digital book content. From the article: "Amazon has brand recognition, a bevy of existing loyal Kindle e-reader owners, and a Web-based e-commerce platform that includes one-click access to buying e-books, movies, digital music downloads, its own Android app store, and streaming media catalog. That adds up to Amazon being uniquely suited to go head-to-head with Apple in the tablet market and become a formidable competitor across the industry."

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140 comments

Possible and likely. (1)

RyuuzakiTetsuya (195424) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509512)

However, I'm guessing it's probably going to be locked down and running Android in it's barest form. Sort of like a locked down Grid10 tablet.

If Amazon sees this as a way to sell digital media, then I think they're looking at a hard sell. Apple's digital media offerings seem to try to buttress their digital media devices, not the other way around.

I wish amazon the best in this though.

Re:Possible and likely. (2)

hedwards (940851) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509528)

Amazon's competition here is B&N or rather Amazon is introducing a product to compete with B&N's offering. Apple is in a completely different area.

Most likely, Kindle color will be similar to Nook color, which probably means that any locking they do will be easily removed.

Re:Possible and likely. (5, Informative)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509584)

We'll have to see what Amazon does; but B&N has been about as far from "locking" as one is likely to find among android devices. By default, they'll try to boot from the (external) microSD slot first, then the internal flash if they don't find anything bootable. Aside from the usual peculiarities of embedded ARM boards, it's almost like dealing with a real computer!

Re:Possible and likely. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37509704)

It's funny, with all the "we'll wait and see" and "rumors of an Amazon tablet are spreading".

TechCrunch already reviewed the thing. They had it in their hands. You just can't buy it yet.

Re:Possible and likely. (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509820)

In the specific context of bootloader behavior, we will have to wait and see: Techcrunch did a UI/market positioning/likely strategy review of the thing; but they commented not at all about the behavior of the bootloader, presence absence of cryptographic checks, etc, etc...

Re:Possible and likely. (3)

MimeticLie (1866406) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510000)

B&N seems entirely more committed to openness and interoperability than Amazon. The Kindle can't use EPUB files for instance (and no, the existance of Calibre doesn't make up for Amazon trying to lock down its platform, no matter how much Amazon's apologists wish it would). I seriously doubt we'll ever see the same level of hardware openness from Amazon that we see from B&N.

Re:Possible and likely. (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510058)

I can't tell if B&N is less evil, or if this just a classic case of the #2-#N players being nicer because they have no chance at catching #1 if they attempt a slavish "just like his walled garden, but worse!" offering..

Re:Possible and likely. (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510356)

It's probably a case of them not really caring what you do with their product and wanting to make sure that they get a piece of the market. Plus, I'm sure they want to ensure that there are plenty of devices out there that can read their books. That's not as big of a concern now that epub has some steam behind it.

As it is, you can bet that B&N does make a profit on each Nook sold, even if the profit isn't huge.

Re:Possible and likely. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37510382)

So, Adobe EPUB DRM is the new measuring stick of openness? Nook and Kindle deal with Hyper-Text Markup Language based books, both of which are reduced to a slightly more RAM friendly chunking. Kindle made the mistake of being first to market, so they are saddled with the mobi that they bought, and a desire to not break everything in a changeover to something without a real advantage. B&N took the Turing-equivalent choice of EPUB because Adobe did, and are therefore the parallel reincarnation of RMS.

To keep users from getting too comfortable with not buying official B&N books, the Nook sequesters unofficial books into a separate menu listing. Amazon dumps bought, stolen, and stolen by the national piracy of finite copyright into the same book list. I'm still confused about who's more open, should I just buy books from Apple?

Re:Possible and likely. (3, Insightful)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509640)

Amazon's competition here is B&N or rather Amazon is introducing a product to compete with B&N's offering. Apple is in a completely different area.

Amazon and iTunes are competing on Music and Video downloads. If they're tossing the E-Ink display, they most certainly are competing with Apple.

Re:Possible and likely. (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510366)

Not really, that's sort of like saying that when ASUS brought out the initial netbook model that they were competing with the makers of desktop replacements. They're superficially the sane, but they're completely different market segments.

Re:Possible and likely. (1)

milkmage (795746) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510628)

Apple is in a completely different area?

from the summary
"Amazon has brand recognition, a bevy of existing loyal Kindle e-reader owners, and a Web-based e-commerce platform that includes one-click access to buying e-books, movies, digital music downloads, its own Android app store, and streaming media catalog. That adds up to Amazon being uniquely suited to go head-to-head with Apple in the tablet market and become a formidable competitor across the industry."

completley different how? Does B&N have an app store? I thought the nook (out of the box) was a reader only.

based on this brief hands on, it sounds like it's squarely pointed at apple.

I like MG Siegler, yet despise techcrunch
http://techcrunch.com/2011/09/02/amazon-kindle-tablet/ [techcrunch.com]

Re:Possible and likely. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37509534)

If its running any form of android its going to give those in the rom communities all the existing software they need to get a fuller version of android up and running on it.

Re:Possible and likely. (1)

AvitarX (172628) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509802)

Not if it runs 3.x

We'll have to wait for at least ice cream sandwich then.

Re:Possible and likely. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37509872)

Amazon forked Android 2.1 or so and then customized it. It's "android" in the same way the android is "linux" or iOS is "BSD". Amazon isn't selling an android tablet, they're selling a color kindle.

Re:Possible and likely. (1)

517714 (762276) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510336)

That's right. No Google Apps for you! /Soup Nazi

Re:Possible and likely. (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510504)

I would be extremely surprised if Amazon Appstore wasn't on it. And that has most (interesting) apps that are in the Market.

Whether it'll have sideloading, though, is an interesting question.

Re:Possible and likely. (2)

SilverHatHacker (1381259) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509540)

I heard they had a custom fork of Android that replaced all the Google services with their own. Their own app store, music service, etc.

Re:Possible and likely. (1)

IANAAC (692242) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509698)

I heard they had a custom fork of Android that replaced all the Google services with their own. Their own app store, music service, etc.

As someone who owns a (really) low-end android tablet without the stock market app, I say good for them.

I've installed Amazon's appstore and music service, as well as their regular Kindle app. They all run quite nicely on low-end tablets.

Re:Possible and likely. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37509772)

Amazon shouldn't create a lock-down version of Android tablet. They need to have strong collaboration with Google to ensure that the future android OS will be compatible with whatever tablet they release. It's fine if they include all their services on the tablet by default but it would be a bad idea to create a lock-down version of Android. In terms of music, video, books & e-commerce, I think amazon has good portfolio to compete head to head against the Apple Appstore. You combine that with Android app-store, I think you would definitely have a real good competitor for iPad

Re:Possible and likely. (1)

Lunix Nutcase (1092239) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509838)

Amazon shouldn't create a lock-down version of Android tablet.

Because you say so?

They need to have strong collaboration with Google to ensure that the future android OS will be compatible with whatever tablet they release.

You do realize that Amazon is trying to compete against Google with this right? That's why they have their own app store and many of their own replacement apps for the standard Android apps.

It's fine if they include all their services on the tablet by default but it would be a bad idea to create a lock-down version of Android.

Do you have any actual reasons other than because you don't want them to do so?

You combine that with Android app-store, I think you would definitely have a real good competitor for iPad

They have their own Android app store which is the whole point of them having their own forked version of Android. They want people buying their apps through them so they get the cut rather than Google.

Re:Possible and likely. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37509920)

Amazon shouldn't create a lock-down version of Android tablet.

Because you say so?

I say that because as a consumer that is what would be attractive to me. Being able to have access to full potential of the tablet, instead of some lock-down version that only serves the amazon.com on tablet.

They need to have strong collaboration with Google to ensure that the future android OS will be compatible with whatever tablet they release.

You do realize that Amazon is trying to compete against Google with this right? That's why they have their own app store and many of their own replacement apps for the standard Android apps.

Yes, I do realize that and I think that is a bad approach. That is the reason why I believe instead of competing with Google they should collaborate.

It's fine if they include all their services on the tablet by default but it would be a bad idea to create a lock-down version of Android.

Do you have any actual reasons other than because you don't want them to do so?

The reason would be that as soon as new Android version comes out it would be an inferior product as oppose to if they had collaborated with Google.

You combine that with Android app-store, I think you would definitely have a real good competitor for iPad

They have their own Android app store which is the whole point of them having their own forked version of Android. They want people buying their apps through them so they get the cut rather than Google.

I believe that consumers and Amazon would benefit much more with strong collaboration. This is the kind of thinking from vendor is what is driving Android fragmentation and creating problems that Linux has faced on Desktop for past decade.

Re:Possible and likely. (1)

Riceballsan (816702) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510310)

While I agree on the better for the consumer part. It may or may not work on the better for amazon portion. Amazon may be intending to sell these for below manufacturing cost, expecting to make the money back via app/book/etc.. sales. If they say they were to sell a tablet for 150, that costs them 200 to make, over the life of the product they would likely recoup all of their losses. But if it is easily rootable and placed on google's market or even allows googles market to be added unrooted, and 3/4ths of the customers buying are intending to do so. They may very well be making a product that does nothing more then give google money, at the cost of $50 to them. Losses cannot be compensated for by volume, popularity and smiles, as much as we like to pretend they can.

Re:Possible and likely. (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510516)

You do realize that Amazon is trying to compete against Google with this right?

I don't think Amazon is trying to directly compete against anyone. Rather, they want more devices out there that serve as a gateway to their various stores (books, music, video, apps). I guess Kindle was an economic success in that way, and they are now trying to extend the model further.

Re:Possible and likely. (1)

Threni (635302) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510130)

Well, yeah, but still able to run any Android app, so it may be forked, but that won't affect the end user. It will only ever receive Amazon upgrades (if any) but then again, it'll be a console-type known quantity people can develop for knowing it'll run on all of them.

That is how Android comes for free (1)

symbolset (646467) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510348)

With Android Marketplaces there is a fee, terms and conditions. If they want to offer it on those terms they have to roll their own app store, and Google is not likely to build their apps for it. There doesn't have to be any dark motive to playing by the rules.

Re:Possible and likely. (1)

jonbryce (703250) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509558)

They have their own Android app store, and I would imagine they will want to sell apps from that to Kindle users.

Re:Possible and likely. (2)

technomom (444378) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509836)

Three words: Nook Color killer. Then, if they're smart, they'll turn a blind eye to the root'n'ROMmers, B&N did, only this is hopefully more capable hardware. Then to put the icing on the B&N cake, they'll come out with an e-ink touchscreen Kindle and reduce the Kindle 3 down to $99 or $79 with ads. Win.

Re:Possible and likely. (1)

RyuuzakiTetsuya (195424) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509934)

I don't know. If they're looking to use this thing to sell digital services rather than having their digital services being used to sell their hardware, it's likely they may lock everything down to appease the mighty overlords of content.

Not what I want from Amazon (2)

janek78 (861508) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509544)

I hope this whole tablet business will not delay what I really expect from Amazon - a hi-res color e-ink Kindle. Same format but a larger display. And please no touch screen, thank you, I don't want my greasy fingers on the display I read.

Tablets have a long way to go to replace dedicated e-book readers. Until they are easily readable in broad daylight and can last at least couple weeks, there will be a market for Kindle.

Re:Not what I want from Amazon (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37509578)

here here, though I'll take the touchscreen. I played with that recent e-ink Barnes and Noble eReader and it's better than the Kindle 3's wonky buttons and keyboard. with the touch screen they could get rid of the keyboard that I never use.

Re:Not what I want from Amazon (1)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509628)

here here, though I'll take the touchscreen. I played with that recent e-ink Barnes and Noble eReader and it's better than the Kindle 3's wonky buttons and keyboard. with the touch screen they could get rid of the keyboard that I never use.

I used to think the way you do, but I've found - now that I own a Kindle - the buttons work much better for me than a touchscreen does. You can hold it in one hand and still easily advance through pages without having to set your coffee down, for instance.

Re:Not what I want from Amazon (0)

icebike (68054) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509674)

You can hold it in one hand and still easily advance through pages without having to set your coffee down, for instance.

That's what I noticed in about the new B&N Simple Reader [barnesandnoble.com]. Its light enough to hold one handed and a simple thumb-tap with the same hand will turn the pages. (It has buttons on the side, but I was using it for 10 minutes before I noticed them.)

Buttons are a point of failure. They are just not necessary any more.

Re:Not what I want from Amazon (1)

vivek7006 (585218) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509964)

Totally agree. The new nook touch has nailed it. Perfect size and form factor and it weighs less than 7 ounces. I have read more books in last 3 month than I read in the last 3 years, thank to my local public library and nook's support to lending ebooks

Re:Not what I want from Amazon (1)

ThorGod (456163) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509604)

Tablets have a long way to go to replace dedicated e-book readers. Until they are easily readable in broad daylight and can last at least couple weeks, there will be a market for Kindle.

Couldn't agree more. I think much gruff around any ereader boils down to users who don't actually want to read. I've got a kobo, of all things, and it reads the pdfs I send it's way perfectly well.

Re:Not what I want from Amazon (0)

oodaloop (1229816) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509814)

I think much gruff around any ereader boils down to users who don't actually want to read.

Is that what you tell yourself? That people who prefer tablets over ereaders are illiterate luddites? I hate ereaders, and love my Android phone and am actively seeking a good Android tablet. And I love to read. I just prefer treeware books over eink books. I would never trade my real books for digital books, and will not stop buying paper books as long as they sell them. Ereaders are a horrible attempt at replacing real books, and I frankly feel those people who prefer ebooks over real ones are the luddites.

Re:Not what I want from Amazon (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509938)

And I love to read

Well, at least we have some common ground, however much we otherwise disagree

Ereaders are a horrible attempt at replacing real books

Find me an e-reader, and I'll let you know. According to marketing you're suppose to play artillery games with animated birds, re-purchase and watch movies, listen to music, listen to audiobooks, pretty much ... everything except read... Despite their best attempts, I love reading manuals and datasheets on my ipad. I probably have not printed out a manufacturers datasheet in over a year (think like 200 page tomes from microchip.com for PIC microcontrollers, mosfet transistor datasheets with a zillion performance graphs, that kind of thing, not so much Gibbon and Plutarch)

Re:Not what I want from Amazon (1)

ThorGod (456163) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509956)

Not quite. It's just when I read reviews about the kobo, most were negative, and none accurately portrayed how it handles the pdfs I throw at it.

Like you, I prefer the tree version of books. They're quicker to flip through and I can buy them at local used book stores. But, my kobo/ereader works great for research articles and old, 'freely available' books in pdf form.

Re:Not what I want from Amazon (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37510448)

re: horrible attempt...

*shrug* Stop thinking of an ereader as attempting to replace books, look at it instead as a different type of paper.

Re:Not what I want from Amazon (1)

shellbeach (610559) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510482)

I think much gruff around any ereader boils down to users who don't actually want to read.

Is that what you tell yourself? That people who prefer tablets over ereaders are illiterate luddites?

*laughs* ... I think he was saying "users who don't actually want to read on the device". I'm pretty sure he wasn't implying that people without eink devices are illiterate ...!

Ereaders are a horrible attempt at replacing real books, and I frankly feel those people who prefer ebooks over real ones are the luddites.

Hey, don't knock it 'til you've tried it. I bought a kindle when I went backpacking round the world for five months, fully expecting to dislike the experience but reasoning that since there was no way I could carry all the paper books I would read in that time, it was a necessary evil. But I absolutely loved reading on it, and now that I'm back home I wish the paper books I still have backed up on my reading list were ebooks instead. It's just a more convenient interface for reading, is all -- smaller, lighter, no losing your place and although the typography isn't quite up to pbooks yet it's good enough for me, and I'm notoriously picky about all things formatting. Want to be reading three books at once? You can actually do that now, without carrying around the extra weight.

Re:Not what I want from Amazon (1)

ThorGod (456163) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510698)

I think much gruff around any ereader boils down to users who don't actually want to read.

Is that what you tell yourself? That people who prefer tablets over ereaders are illiterate luddites?

*laughs* ... I think he was saying "users who don't actually want to read on the device". I'm pretty sure he wasn't implying that people without eink devices are illiterate ...!

Thanks for putting taking his words out of my mouth. People, especially on the net, are often too ready and willing to read offensive remarks into anything anyone says. People love a good fight, but that doesn't mean they always hear with their ears and read with their eyes.

Re:Not what I want from Amazon (1)

FullBandwidth (1445095) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509912)

I dug my venerable Kindle out and dusted it off, after working with a variety of tablets over the last few months. I'd forgotten how much smaller & lighter it is, with battery life in months, not days. It's hard to see how to preserve those good traits of a e-reader while also loading it down with features to make it a desktop/laptop/netbook replacement, which seems to be where the tablet market has to go (or has already gone?).

Color e-ink tablet (1)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510392)

Dont hold your breath. I doubt we will see one here in the USA until 2013. That said, I'm also hoping for one, but i wont delude my self thinking it will happen soon.

Oh, and i prefer the touch screen since i rarely have to 'type' ( its a reader, not a data entry system ), so the extra real estate sucked up by the keypad is annoying. Its one of the reasons why i eventually 'traded' my kindle Gen1 to a Nook Touch instead of a gen 3 kindle ( that and the nook was rootable )

Rooted OS coming soon (1)

craftycoder (1851452) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509594)

Someone will release a root kit for it and an appropriate Android install will be available shortly. This is pretty cool I think. I purchased a Nook to read with because I wanted an Android device. I'll buy an inexpensive tablet as well if the feature/value ratio is right for me. I'm looking forward to seeing what they have to offer.

Plus Amazon Prime (1)

AstroMatt (1594081) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509632)

Also rumored to include a subscription to Amazon Prime - free shipping and the movie streaming service. Not a bad deal if the look and feel is good.

Prediction: In 2 years they'll give you a tablet when you subscribe to Amazon Prime.

Matt Wood
Melbourne, FL

$300 is too much (2)

Animats (122034) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509670)

$300 is too much for an e-reader.

Special-purpose e-readers have to be a lot cheaper than comparable phones and tablets, or they're not going to sell.

Ultimately, the phone/tablet market will probably eat the e-reader market. Look what happened to standalone PDAs.

Re:$300 is too much (2)

Y-Crate (540566) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509870)

Ultimately, the phone/tablet market will probably eat the e-reader market. Look what happened to standalone PDAs.

Except that e-readers offer a screen fundamentally different from those on general-purpose tablets.

I mean, I could read e-books on an iPad, but I'd rather stick with en e-ink screen that won't make my eyes hurt after an hour.

Re:$300 is too much (1)

node 3 (115640) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510022)

Ultimately, the phone/tablet market will probably eat the e-reader market. Look what happened to standalone PDAs.

Except that e-readers offer a screen fundamentally different from those on general-purpose tablets.

It all comes down to how many devices people are willing to buy and deal with. Consolidation of devices is a clear trend. Presently, there's a compelling argument in favor of eInk based readers for reading books (but no other function), but it's a tough sell over an iPad or in addition to an iPad in the general market. As it stands, the iPad is a fantastic tablet, and a pretty good ebook reader (with compelling book related features as well). And the benefits of an eReader are going to be less and less notable as the iPad, and possibly other tablets, improve over time.

I mean, I could read e-books on an iPad, but I'd rather stick with en e-ink screen that won't make my eyes hurt after an hour.

Why would your eyes hurt after an hour? I see people say things like this, and it's always on text-based forums by people who most certainly spend hours reading text on their computers without issue.

Re:$300 is too much (1)

0123456 (636235) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510294)

Presently, there's a compelling argument in favor of eInk based readers for reading books (but no other function), but it's a tough sell over an iPad or in addition to an iPad in the general market.

Well, duh. If you're buying a $139 e-ink e-reader you can't really expect it to do the same things as a $500 iPad.

And there have been a number of rumours about Amazon releasing a $99 Kindle for the holiday season, though I've no idea whether they're true.

why eyes hurt (1)

tfigment (2425764) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510346)

Why would your eyes hurt after an hour?

I couldn't say why some peoples eyes hurt since that is not my area of expertise but I can tell you that my eyes hurt after reading on my nook color after a couple of hours. I also have a first gen kindle and do not have the same problem with it. I am a software developer and am in front of computer screens all day reading text of monitors without issue.

Maybe its a quality of light issue or refresh rates or something but it happens at least in my experience.

In the end I would put money on tablets winning the battle over e-ink over time unless e-ink vendors can put out some quality color screens that update quickly fairly soon just because they are more versatile at the moment.

Re:why eyes hurt (1)

0123456 (636235) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510682)

I couldn't say why some peoples eyes hurt since that is not my area of expertise but I can tell you that my eyes hurt after reading on my nook color after a couple of hours. I also have a first gen kindle and do not have the same problem with it. I am a software developer and am in front of computer screens all day reading text of monitors without issue.

There's a big difference between reading a book on a monitor and reading bits and pieces of source code; in the former case you start at the beginning and continue reading to the end, in the latter you're moving between sections of code and your eyes aren't just reading non-stop.

Well, unless you get your kicks from reading through 100,000 words of C++ code anyway.

Re:$300 is too much (1)

Animats (122034) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510190)

Except that e-readers offer a screen fundamentally different from those on general-purpose tablets.

That's going away. Users seem to prefer fast color displays over slow reflective monochrome ones. There's a color Nook, and this new color Kindle is not an "e-Ink" device.

Re:$300 is too much (1)

shellbeach (610559) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510546)

That's going away. Users seem to prefer fast color displays over slow reflective monochrome ones.

I dunno -- I see a lot more kindles on my train commute than tablets. And I am yet to see anyone reading a novel on a tablet. Ever. (I've seen people reading PDFs for work a few times, but that's as good as it gets ...)

Re:$300 is too much (1)

xigxag (167441) | more than 2 years ago | (#37511044)

Ever? I've read entire novels just on my 4" phone's Kindle app, as well as an Nook color. I do own an e-ink Kindle but haven't used it in almost a year.

Re:$300 is too much (1)

mgblst (80109) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510964)

Ok, but I would rather have one device. I read on the iPad, 2 books last week alone. I enjoy not having to have an external light source, since I read in lots of different places.

Both our views are valid, but lets see which one lasts. I do not see e-readers sticking around beyond the next few years. I can't see most people having both, and choosing to go with the better all round device. I think that is why Amazon and BN have gone the tablet platform, not trusting ereaders to carry them.

Re:$300 is too much (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37510208)

$300 is too much for an e-reader.

Exactly, which is why the Kindle is $119. From all the rumors, this would be a full tablet with access not just to Kindle, but also to Amazon MP3, Amazon Video on Demand, a tablet Amazon store (similar to WindowShop on the iPad), the Amazon AppStore (yes, they have a competitor to the Google Android Appstore, it's been launched like 6 months), etc.

Re:$300 is too much (1)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510408)

It wont be a dedicated e-book reader, it will be a generic media delivery device, including books, movies, games, music, magazines and news papers..

Re:$300 is too much (1)

bignetbuy (1105123) | more than 2 years ago | (#37511096)

$300 is too much for an e-reader.

Bullshit. Amazon couldn't keep their Kindle v1 and Kindle v2 in stock and those were around $300. When the DX came out, they were SWAMPED with orders. Just because $300 is too expensive for you doesn't mean others can't afford it.

Special-purpose e-readers have to be a lot cheaper than comparable phones and tablets, or they're not going to sell.

Amazon would disagree with you.

Ultimately, the phone/tablet market will probably eat the e-reader market. Look what happened to standalone PDAs.

and yet Amazon still continues to sell Kindle...yet the market is dead, right? *rolls eyes*

The tablet you want (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37509672)

Retina display
Open OS with no jailbreaking

Useful? (4, Insightful)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509686)

will tether closely to its music, movie and digital book content

Before purchase, I thought I'd use my ipad for that, because that's what marketing said; After purchase, I never do. Its an absolutely killer email reader, a fantastic web browser, great pdf reader (manuals, etc). I play games on it occasionally. Avadon etc. My coworkers have about the same story... repeating the marketers mantra before purchase of consume consume consume media, yet after purchase it's entirely different, electronic paper plus some video games.

There is quite a separation between what the marketing people demand I purchase it for, and what I've seen people actually use it for after purchase. I have a good feeling about it because the actual use turns out to be more valuable than I was expecting.

Amazon might want to watch out; if competitors start marketing toward what tablets are actually used for, they might get left in the dust. Someday I'll want to buy a replacement for my ipad, at that time I'm going to jump at advertisements for "instant on" and "great email reader" and "really awesome webbrowser" and "smooth pdf rendering". I'm going to avoid advertisements about how this is the 50th media format I should buy a full collection of Beetles music on, or how I should re-purchase my complete DVD collection (again) for their new gadget, because that simply didn't work out as an interest for me on my current tablet.

Re:Useful? (3, Insightful)

DrVomact (726065) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509826)

will tether closely to its music, movie and digital book content

Before purchase, I thought I'd use my ipad for that, because that's what marketing said; After purchase, I never do. Its an absolutely killer email reader, a fantastic web browser, great pdf reader (manuals, etc). I play games on it occasionally. Avadon etc. ... I'm going to avoid advertisements about how this is the 50th media format I should buy a full collection of Beetles music on, or how I should re-purchase my complete DVD collection (again) for their new gadget, because that simply didn't work out as an interest for me on my current tablet.

Isn't that the heart of the problem? Everyone wants to sell media, but they all want to sell it in a proprietary format through proprietary channels so that they can control the media you buy. It's like having to buy paper books printed in such a way that you have to wear special decoding glasses to read—and of course, you can only buy the books from the glasses vendor, because other vendor's books won't be properly decoded. This is stupid, and I'm not switching to e-books until a reasonably wide selection of books is available in an open format from diverse vendors, and there is a selection of e-book readers (or tablet PCs or whatever you want to call them) available that will work with this format. The format itself could be something pretty simple: XHTML with user-customizeable styles, and maybe PNG graphics.

Re:Useful? (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509878)

This is stupid, and I'm not switching to e-books until a reasonably wide selection of books is available in an open format from diverse vendors, and there is a selection of e-book readers (or tablet PCs or whatever you want to call them) available that will work with this format.

We've certainly got that. Torrent sites up the wazoo for all formats and U****t's format of choice for technical non-fiction is the pdf.

Oh, you meant legal providers. Well, this is kinda like music was in about 1999, maybe a little later... A few crappy proprietary formats, and everyone trading free formats on the net. There are some exceptions... Baen knows what they're doing, and as such, is one of few publishers to make money off me.

Re:Useful? (1)

0123456 (636235) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510276)

Oh, you meant legal providers. Well, this is kinda like music was in about 1999, maybe a little later... A few crappy proprietary formats, and everyone trading free formats on the net.

All books on Smashwords are DRM-free and many books on Amazon are DRM-free. I was actually surprised when I bought a Kindle book recently and discovered it was DRM-infested, so now I do check before buying them.

Re:Useful? (1)

shellbeach (610559) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510694)

All books on Smashwords are DRM-free and many books on Amazon are DRM-free. I was actually surprised when I bought a Kindle book recently and discovered it was DRM-infested, so now I do check before buying them.

Huh? Every book I've purchased from Amazon (mostly literature) has been clad in DRM rubbish. I know this, because I strip them of it before putting them on my kindle ...

Re:Useful? (1)

Threni (635302) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510124)

> This is stupid, and I'm not switching to e-books until a reasonably wide selection of books is
> available in an open format from diverse vendors

So, Kindle and PDFs, then?
http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/32987/how-to-read-pdf-files-on-your-amazon-kindle-version-3/ [howtogeek.com]

There, that wasn't too difficult, was it?

Re:Useful? (1)

gwolf (26339) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510502)

No, what is difficult is to read the goddamn PDF.

PDFs are printed page descriptions. An e-reader has very different constraints and logic. An ideal ebook is way closer to simplified HTML than to a PDF.

But still - Whatever you can get in HTML, it's almost trivial to convert to the venerable MOBI format. I have not needed to generate EPUB, although I understand it's a very similar process.

Re:Useful? (1)

shellbeach (610559) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510732)

This is stupid, and I'm not switching to e-books until a reasonably wide selection of books is available in an open format from diverse vendors, and there is a selection of e-book readers (or tablet PCs or whatever you want to call them) available that will work with this format. The format itself could be something pretty simple: XHTML with user-customizeable styles, and maybe PNG graphics.

Relax. The DRM of most (all?) major ebook publishers is easily breakable, and because of backwards compatibility with older devices they're locked into these breakable DRM models forever, more or less.

I pay for all my ebooks. I also strip the DRM off all of my ebooks (and occasionally correct the terrible formatting that the publisher's used.) And from there, I can convert them into any format I like. (epub is generally accepted as the default open format and essentially what you just described (zipped xhtml with css), although even something like Amazon's .mobi is technically an open format now ...)

Re:Useful? (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37509946)

Yes and the marketing got you to pay $250 more because you fell for it, the things you DO do can be done quite well on the nook for $250 less then what you paid (I use it to actually read books, but it is a decent web browser that guess what supports flash, great for email and perfect size for PDF documents) so as you can see the Marketing arm is working perfectly and Amazon nor Apple need to watch out because rarely do people spend a great deal of time researching what will work for them or wait long enough to read reviews of the product and what is done with them but will go based on the marketing that have seen.

Re:Useful? (0)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510086)

Yes and the marketing got you to pay $250 more because you fell for it, the things you DO do can be done quite well on the nook for $250 less then what you paid

Nah I already had a little handheld that was too small and a netbook that was too big and takes 2 minutes to boot... The ipad screen is about twice the size of the original nook screen. It was an intentional decision to select a device "about the size of a book". Not a postcard, not a really big postage stamp, not a floor tile sized laptop/netbook.

I have not been keeping up with the market, no need for me. It might be that "nook" is like "eee" was, and now refers to a generic family of products, and there's a nook branded device that has the ipad form factor, battery life, and resolution. But in early 2010 there was simply no comparison. In 2012 or 2013 or whenever my ipad meets its demise, I will consider its competitors...

I don't want flash because I'm not interested in animated advertisements.

Re:Useful? (1)

anethema (99553) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510440)

There is a new nook that is basically a generic android tablet.

It is about half as responsive and nice to use, like basically all the android tablets up to date.

Tiny things like 100-300 ms lag in the UI, shuttery picture browsing, inconsistent web behavior etc dont matter to the hardcore 'geeks' but the market is showing that the fit and finish matter in the end.

Other than that the nook is actually a fairly nice android tablet. Cheap and as usable as any of em.

It depends on what Amazon introduces (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37509708)

If Amazon just introduces an upgrade to the Kindle that happens to be a tablet and run Android at its core, it's not going to be that big a deal, IMO. If it's going to release something that's as good as the iPad, it's going to have to cost about as much as an iPad, because it's hard to make money on a similar product otherwise. It's hard to see Amazon (or any company) investing that much money into design, production and managing a supply chain simply to break even -- when it could have sold its digital products on other platforms without tying up all that capital. If Amazon tries to have a cheaper product -- in order to have a cheaper price -- the experience won't be in the same ballpark as the iPad (even if you like Android as a tablet OS). If the company tries to make a product that's as good as the iPad (at break even, which doesn't make business sense), then most people are going to feel that it's a cut-rate product if it's priced less.

Yes, the geeks will buy some of these and root them or whatever, but geeks aren't the real market anymore for these devices. It's "normal" people out there who will make it successful or not. I'm having trouble seeing a profitable scenario for Amazon unless it's simply doing a cheap tablet that's an upgrade to the existing Kindle line. If that's the case, it won't even be in the same market as the iPad.

Maybe (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37509722)

They'll be successful. But Android doesn't win on features or apps. It can only win on price. And if Oracle wins their case, Android is dead.

FAIL (0)

CaryMG (2422686) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509734)

This is the stupidest thing I've ever heard of .... This is just yet ANOTHER in a long line of Android tablets DOOMED to failure. What, because it has an Amazon.Com overlay & free "Amazon Prime" makes it any different?!? And it doesn't even use Android3/4 !!!! Whoever buys this load-o'-horseshite *deserves* to be rooked of thier hardearned dough. Like everyone says: There is no *tablet* market, there's an *iPad* market ....

Re:FAIL (3, Insightful)

IANAAC (692242) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509854)

Like everyone says: There is no *tablet* market, there's an *iPad* market ....

I'm not so sure. There's an "iPad market" because Apple has done a fantastic job of marketing it. The long line of failed android tablets you refer to are still out there being sold, though.

All it'll take is a big enough company to put some serious marketing (and aggressive pricing) into their android tablet. Then you'll start to see more than just iPads in Starbucks. As it stands now, android is capable of doing everything iOS does on the same or lower hardware.\

If there's a company that could do it, it would probably be Amazon. They're big enough, and they have a large catalog of all sorts of media to back up whatever they come up with.

Re:FAIL (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37509922)

"is capable of doing everything iOS does on the same or lower hardware"

Sadly not true since most applications aren't native, and JIT optimization or not, aren't quite as fast, let alone faster. iOS is very quick, Apple dislike aside.

Re:FAIL (3, Interesting)

Courageous (228506) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510338)

Amazon is in the position of being able to loss-lead their tablet. As the HP tablet experience shows, price it low enough and even a bricklet will sell.

Apple competitors are DOOMED to failure (1)

Brannon (221550) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510996)

until they learn that Apple's secret isn't "marketing".

Apple is quite happy for you to continue to rattle away about iSheep and marketing because as long as you do, you will NEVER threaten their market share. So, yeah, have fun with that.

Re:Apple competitors are DOOMED to failure (1)

IANAAC (692242) | more than 2 years ago | (#37511170)

until they learn that Apple's secret isn't "marketing".

Apple is quite happy for you to continue to rattle away about iSheep and marketing because as long as you do, you will NEVER threaten their market share. So, yeah, have fun with that.

I sense anger in your post. Why is that? There was no anger, nor me bleating on about iSheep, etc. in my initial post.

The fact is, Apple DOES do a great job at marketing. I've not seen anywhere near the amount of marketing for any other tablet currently on the market, and there are a few.

My point was that it's going to take a huge company with lots of cash, as well as other assets (read media to consume and a ready-made market to sell that media) to get anywhere close to the iPad's current position. And if any company is in a position to do that, it's probably Amazon.

But that was a mighty fine knee-jerk there.

Re:FAIL (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37509882)

Steve?

I thought when you stepped down, we wouldn't be exposed to your fanboism.

You and your shiny ilk sure are cool, tho'.

Are there 72 virgins waiting in heaven for ipad users.

regards,

any rumours on the next Amazon e-ink device? (1)

Hazel Bergeron (2015538) | more than 2 years ago | (#37509738)

I don't care about another iPad clone. Any rumours on the next e-ink device? E-ink are doing some moderately interesting things with a colour filter in front of the display, so I guess it's possible they'll adopt that. But no-one's talking about it.

Re:any rumours on the next Amazon e-ink device? (1)

NightLamp (556303) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510154)

I also wish this was being talked about more, I am not interested in 10 hour battery life, I'm interested in a 15 day battery life for a tablet - it doesn't require a back-lit LCD 60Hz screen, but an app store would be nice.

I wonder at this point what the best multi-purpose e-ink tablet is?

Multipurpose usually equals fast-screened (1)

gwolf (26339) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510530)

What users expect from a device that looks and smells like a tablet is touch-screeny, with animations, with kewl effects, where you can rotate and the screen elegantly redraws itself. And, I'm sorry, you just will not see a fast e-ink screen. It's just a very different thing, with a very different purpose.

Re:any rumours on the next Amazon e-ink device? (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510544)

"Multipurpose eInk tablet" is an oxymoron with the current limitations of that technology - most notably screen refresh rate, and also color fidelity (last I checked, even the most recent color eInk has something like 16 colors, and does the rest with dithering). If you tried to use a web browser on any of eInk readers out there, you know what I mean.

There are other technologies out there which, in theory, offer all the benefits of eInk (reflective screen with no backlight, very low power consumption) while still allowing for fast refresh rate and colors when you need them - namely, Pixel Qi and Mirasol. In practice, I have a PQi tablet, and I'm not at all impressed with the contrast of the screen in reflective mode; and there is no product with Mirasol available on the market today.

Re:any rumours on the next Amazon e-ink device? (1)

shellbeach (610559) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510828)

I also wish this was being talked about more, I am not interested in 10 hour battery life, I'm interested in a 15 day battery life for a tablet - it doesn't require a back-lit LCD 60Hz screen, but an app store would be nice.

I doubt you'll get that anytime soon. One of the reason why eink devices have such great battery life is that they never power the screen except for when it is refreshed. Reading books, you only refresh the screen when you turn a page, meaning that your battery lasts forever. But if you want to do tablet-y things like surf the web, play games, etc -- things you do with apps, in other words -- you'll be refreshing the screen much more and your battery life will plummet.

An e-ink reader is a one-trick pony; it just happens to do that trick so exceptionally well that it leaves anything else right now for dead. I'd also like to see a new, higher-resolution e-ink kindle come out, preferable with a better contrast screen. But I don't want it running apps or Android or anything else -- I just want it for reading books. Everything else I can do on my phone or my netbook.

Different Approach Than Apple's Other Competitors (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37509792)

I feel like this is a very different approach than Apple's other competitors have taken. Amazon has been smart enough to setup services and attract users before launching a tablet full blown tablet. Amazon's music store, Android market, Book Store, etc are all excellent services that have good user bases. Other competitors haven't gone so far as to create top notch services to support their tablets and I think that has been a contributing factor to their failure.

hmmhmmm (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37510172)

And this will miss the entire point of why kindle is so popular,

1. Super light weight
2. REDICULOUS battery life

and be left in the dust by the iPad again, just like every other tablet.

How about a Google + Amazon merger? (1)

BayaWeaver (1048744) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510202)

That will create the ultimate anti-Apple. Amazon's store is the only one right now that can compete with Apple's App store and if that becomes the de facto Google Android store, that will mean the first real competitor to the iDevice/App Store ecosystem. And Google's cloud + Amazon's cloud will be mother of all clouds too.

Re:How about a Google + Amazon merger? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37510328)

I completely agree. Amazon and Google need to collaborate together to compete against Apple. Instead, Amazon wants to take Apple on its own.

Color E-ink display or I don't care (1)

Psychofreak (17440) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510218)

My wife loves her Kindle. She uses it a whole lot, and the battery life is incredible and nearly what is advertised (30 days!). I would like one too, but I want color E-ink. I know, it only matters with maybe one of 10 documents I read. (especially considering that I reference out-of-print scans from Google books rather frequently)

Failing color E-ink, I probably will not get a Kindle.

Phil

Future of e-ink (1)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510456)

I just hope this does not spell the end of e-ink in favor of LCD. Each has their use, and i refer reading on e-ink any day. ( tho i want color... ).

US Only (1)

kyhwana (18093) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510500)

My guess is that this will be US only, so it'll be useless outside the US even if you can have someone in the US buy it for you and ship it to you.

Nook Color Clone (2)

megoogler (2470174) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510602)

Nook Color Android-based tablet/eReader from Barnes & Noble has been on the market for over a year and sold millions of units at $250. Gives Flash, apps, videos, color magazines and ebooks with video inserts, and the best anti-glare coated screen on the market. Technology "leader" Amazon is finally catching up with the book store company by copying their device. Kindle only supports eBooks in its proprietary AZW format. Nook, on the other hand, supports both DRM-protected and DRM-free ebooks in ePub format thus it supports ebooks from B&N store, from any other DRM-free source on the web, and from public libraries. If you walk in with the Nook to Barnes & Noble store, you’re allowed to read any available eBook for free while in the store via free provided in the store Wi-Fi. Nook Color has several apps that already come with the device (Pandora Internet radio, QuickOffice, etc.) and hundreds of other apps are available for download. Also, you can use the Social Settings screen to link your NOOK Color to your Facebook account and your Twitter account. You can also import all your contacts from your Google Gmail account. Once you have linked to Facebook and Twitter and set up email contacts, you can lend and borrow books, recommend books, and share favorite quotes with your friends. Nook store has over 2 million of paid books and about the same number of free public domain books.

Re:Nook Color Clone (1)

xigxag (167441) | more than 2 years ago | (#37511124)

Nice press release. People would have more respect for these kinds of postings if you would include a disclaimer that you're writing on behalf of B&N.

Extension but not a replacement (1)

martinve (1233522) | more than 2 years ago | (#37510658)

I can see Amazon tablet as an extension but definitely not as a replacement of existing Kindle family. The primary advantage of dedicated e-book readers - long battery life - is just not there.
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