In the latest TV spot, Amazon points out that the Kindle handles bright sunlight better than a rival device that looks a lot like an iPad, while costing less than a decent pair of sunglasses. Of course, it doesn't run apps or play videos, but then Amazon never claimed that it would. The E-Ink screen technology and low-cost manufacturing recipe give the Kindle a few advantages that the Swiss Army knives of mobile computing will find hard to match for years to come.
This is no little hobby for Amazon anymore.
As recently as last year, you would have been forgiven for thinking that Amazon came up with the Kindle only to have a cost-effective means of distributing its books. Save a tree, hug an e-book. But it should be obvious by now that the company has grander plans than that. After all, e-book readers are a dime a dozen these days and include products from established consumer electronics giant Sony
This has become a high-stakes game for everyone involved, and for Amazon it's a higher-margin product that feeds its coffers in a way that no ephemeral download or third-party shipment ever could.
The Kindle is currently on a two-week back order, but Amazon obviously wants to make and sell a lot more of these crazy little things.
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