September 28, 2011, 4:28 PM
Blogger

Stoking the tablet battle

Kevin Woodward

Senior Editor

Lead Photo

Outfitted with a new browser, the e-retailer's tablet takes on the iPad with a price tag that is $300 less.

E-retailer Amazon.com Inc. has managed to persuade me to do something that even Apple Inc.’s Steve Jobs could not do: Pre-order a tablet. OK, that’s not newsworthy beyond my home and office. What is significant about the new Kindle Fire is the integration of Amazon digital content with the 7-inch tablet. And that the Kindle Fire costs $300 less than the cheapest iPad2 from Apple. That’s big savings in this economy.

Of course, users will be able to buy Amazon’s products and services through the tablet, and use a web browser to visit sites, even those of other retailers. Consumers belonging to Amazon Prime, the e-retailer’s expedited shipping service, gain a dedicated appliance to view videos and books and buy songs using their Amazon accounts. Amazon is No. 1 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide, with 2010 net sales of $34.2 billion.

This integration could greatly simplify how a consumer discovers and buys these products, assuming he shops on Amazon. In one way, the Kindle Fire might act as an electronic sandwich board sitting on a sidewalk outside of a store, advertising a deal and even more merchandise inside the store; except, of course, one could play Angry Birds on a Kindle Fire.

The promise of the ability to shop on Amazon using simple steps seems assured. It could aid consumer adoption of the device in much the same way the iPad’s phenomenal success can be attributed to its simple-to-use interface.

Price also is important. I waited a long time to buy a first-generation iPad, only doing so this year after finding a refurbished one. Even then, at $399, I hesitated before clicking the purchase button. Today was different. As soon as I could, I placed the pre-order. Price and my proclivity to buying the latest tech devices motivated me. The Kindle Fire becomes the fifth computing device—in addition to the iPad, I have desktop and laptop computers and a smartphone—in my household when it arrives Nov. 16.

The question then will be which offers more value measured in money and time saved. Will my time using a tablet shift to one from a retailer or remain with the device built by the computing giant, which also would like to sell me digital content? Will I find better deals on one device over the other? I’ll have to wait and see.

Comments

Sign In to Make a Comment

Comments are moderated by Internet Retailer and can be removed.

Not a member? Signup for free today!

Recent Posts from this Blog

FPO

Gregory Kennedy / Mobile Commerce

Recommendations for creating compelling mobile ads

All advertising must be compelling to work. And in the constrained environment of a mobile ...

FPO

Jim Erickson / E-Commerce

The battle for dominance of China's Internet econony

Why are two Chinese heavyweights, Alibaba and Tencent, spending millions subsidizing cab fares? The taxi-hailing ...

FPO

Ralph Dangelmaier / Mobile Commerce

The forgotten problem in mobile shopping carts: payments

Conversion rates fell on mobile devices, while increasing on desktops during the last holiday season. ...

FPO

Satya Krishna Ganni / Mobile Commerce

Designing landing pages for mobile commerce sites

A checklist of important tips for designing a mobile commerce landing page, from the CEO ...

Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement