Amazon to Challenge iPad With Tablet By October?
According to the Wall Street Journal Amazon plans to release a tablet computer "by october," people familiar with the matter said.
It appears Amazon is finally going to battle Apple on the tablet front, despite having a rather firm grip in the e-Reader field. However, the iPads rather insane popularity, and amount of crossover (i.e. people who have both a kindle and a tablet) is becoming too much for Amazon to ignore.
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos has danced around the issue in a number of statements and appearances this year, and the number of rumors surrounding the supposed device seem to be confirming Bezos comments. Those familiar with the device told the WSJ the tablet will come with "a roughly nine-inch screen and run on Google's Android platform." Also, the device wont have a camera and pricing and distribution of the device seems unclear as the online retailer wont be designing the initial tablet itself.
Amazon's "tablet" will be more of a branded item than an actual device designed by the company like the Kindle. The WSJ sources went on to say that Amazon is even having trouble figuring out how to market the device. Which makes sense, introducing a device that has all the features of the cheaper Kindle (minus an e-ink screen), but adds the functionality of a tablet could possibly cannibalize sales of the Kindle. Amazon is betting that individuals will want one of each it appears, and the companies efforts to make the Kindle cheaper and cheaper attest to that.
However, the source also said Amazon plans to introduce two updated versions of their black-and-white Kindles in this years third quarter as well, one of which will feature a touch screen, something the Kindle currently lacks. This move would seem to go against minimizing overlap between their Kindle line and the rumored tablet.
The only way Amazon will be able to compete in the tablet market is if they released a very well refined device, that can compete with the iPad and offers avid Kindle and Amazon users and incentive to use their device over the Kindle App on iOS.
Sadly, it appears Amazon is already struggling to find and highlight these incentives internally, and further proves Apple's competitors are struggling to find their own iPad Kryptonite.