Can You Trust Amazon's New Kindles?

Your next Kindle will come with a lifeline, and that's bad news for (NASDAQ: AMZN  )  investors, says Fool contributor Tim Beyers in the following video.

Specifically, Amazon's two new Kindle HDX models come with what's called a Mayday button. Press, and you'll be connected to tech support 24/7, 365 days a year. Tim says to think of it as the tablet equivalent of General Motors' OnStar emergency assistance system.

Therein lies the problem. Drivers have accidents, but tablet owners? Do we really need near-instant access to an Amazon Kindle support specialist any time of day or night? (The e-tailer's stated goal is to begin providing help in 15 seconds or less.)

As nice a feature as it could be for some, the very act of adding a Mayday button suggests to users that Amazon's Kindles are too complicated for everyday use. Do you agree? Are you in the market for an HDX? Please watch the video to get Tim's full take and then leave a comment below to let us know what you think.

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  • Report this Comment On September 26, 2013, at 6:53 PM, JohnSanDiego wrote:

    Apple: "it just works."

    Kindle: "Mayday!"

    Take your pick.

  • Report this Comment On September 27, 2013, at 1:58 AM, The1MAGE wrote:

    Right now people buy extended warranties, and nobody seems to ask, "So this will break down when the original warranty expires?"

    But I think they might see this as a way to attract older clients who are reluctant to jump into new technology.

    The ones that don't need it will simply ignore it.

    Can't say it is a good idea that will pan out, but this article really over thinks this too much.

  • Report this Comment On September 27, 2013, at 3:12 AM, matthewluke wrote:

    Instead of "OnStar for your Kindle", I think a better analogy would be an Apple Genius Bar for a store without a physical presence. Everybody generally agrees that the Apple Genius Bar is... well, genius for Apple. I don't see 'Mayday' as being anything except a Genius Bar for a store without actual physical brick and mortar locations.

  • Report this Comment On September 27, 2013, at 8:15 AM, TMFMileHigh wrote:


    >>Instead of "OnStar for your Kindle", I think a better analogy would be an Apple Genius Bar for a store without a physical presence.

    *Excellent* point. Perhaps the naming is the issue here? "Mayday" button sounds far too much like the tablet equivalent of a 911 call.

    Foolish best,



    TMFMileHigh in CAPS and on the boards

    @milehighfool on Twitter

  • Report this Comment On September 27, 2013, at 3:06 PM, CMFMutwa wrote:

    I needed some assistance early on with my Kindle HD. I telephoned and got rapid, effective assistance. I'm sure it's the same here: it helps the tablet newbies and bookophiles get over their purchase fears, and is a more apt description than "genius bar".

    And is it just tech support, or does it get you to customer service for purchases?

  • Report this Comment On December 06, 2013, at 12:27 AM, Jrob wrote:

    I am an avid fan and buyer of several Apple devices that is considering an HDX 8.9. One of the things I do like about the device is the May Day system. I am really impressed with the screen size, the light weight, the resolution (which in tests, and my viewing) shows it is superb. It weighs less than the new iPad. My key point is that for someone like me, not very familiar with this new device, the ability to quickly have some one in front of you helping with questions is pretty awesome. For me, it's a cool selling point.

  • Report this Comment On December 13, 2013, at 10:08 AM, kastner wrote:

    I love my Kindle. Even got one for my neice for Christmas. Got it from, they have really good prices and it ships in pretty quick

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