Photo: Amazon via YouTube
Amazon smartly continues to sell its Kindle e-reader at more places than just its Amazon.com web store. The company’s latest Kindle distributor is AT&T, the wireless carrier that powers the Kindle’s 3G connection in the U.S.AT&T says today it will sell the $190 Kindle 3G in its 2,000+ owned-and-operated retail stores beginning on Mar. 6.
This is a good move for both companies.
For Amazon, it’s yet another place in the neighbourhood where people can try out a Kindle before they buy one, whether they ultimately purchase it from AT&T or order it from Amazon. And it’s another opportunity to have the Kindle on retail shelves near the iPad and other tablets, so people could compare their relative strengths and weaknesses.
For AT&T, it will be able to brag that it has been powering yet another cool device. And now that the Kindle is cheap enough that it is in impulse purchase range for many people, maybe AT&T will pick up a few sales, which it also gets to count as wireless “subscribers.”
As mobile phone penetration gets near saturation point, carriers are looking to build up bigger businesses powering non-phone devices, like Kindles, digital photo frames, GPS devices, netbooks, etc. AT&T says it added 2 million “emerging device connections” in Q4. This could help a little.
We don’t expect this partnership to result in huge sales, but it’s a good move on both sides.
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