Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Kindle Gets Sponsored; This Could Be the Future Of Consumer Products Like Tablets

Updated:  Amazon's tablets looks like a done deal as WSJ confirmed they will be out by October.  And today's ATT tie-in speaks volumes about Amazon's tablet plans.  It's like going to be based on Android, a version without Google's blessing which means they cannot use the green Android logo.  This really explains the kind of ecosystem that Amazon is creating.

It has its own app, music, and movie store as well as the largest selection of general merchandise in the world.  Given it's huge customer-base, it isn't a big leap to think Amazon could go into other consumer electronic markets as well.

Perhaps, Amazon's dominant online retail position will allow it to do what others have failed to do:  challenge Apple's iTunes and iOS vision.

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ATT is sponsoring a special version of Amazon's Kindle with a special deals.  Amazon already has such a Kindle in the offering but this is the first time the 3G is being offered and the first a carrier is doing the deal.

According to MocoNews, the ATT backed Kindle will drop to $139 - obviously, there would still be ads but it's a small price to pay for some users.  On top of that, ATT does get a huge mind-share for these Kindle users who likely are buying books.  They can conceivable be buying other things like ATT services or goods.

This can be a game changer for all concerned going forward.  Amazon is rumored to be developing its own Android-based tablets to compete with Nook and the iPad.  Future deals could know anywhere from tens of dollars to fifty or even a hundred given the right sponsorship for the life of the device.

It's not that bad of a deal for companies like ATT, especially if future tablets require 3G data plans to use.  It's likely to have an impact in ways that Motorola, Samsung, and other tablet makers has not given Apple's iPad's dominant position.

In fact, Microsoft could be interested in such deals if these devices are locked into using Bing as the default search engine and related services.  

Amazon would also be in the best position to do these kinds of deals that mobile users and readers will benefit.  And they are likely to be a dominant force with which Apple has to content with.  Currently, Apple and Amazon are embroiled in a trademark lawsuit.  Expect that to only be the opening salvo of a major war between the two to come.


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