Kindle Sales Could Approach $4 Billion By 2012

The latest guesstimate for Amazon’s (AMZN) Kindle e-book reader business: Barclays Capital analyst Doug Anmuth estimates in a note today that the Kindle 2 and new big-screen Kindle DX could generate $840 million in gross profit on $3.7 billion of revenue in 2012. The DX itself could generate $100 million in gross profit on $700 million in sales in 2012, he estimates, based on potential success in the education market. (This includes devices and e-books.)

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This is a crapshoot, of course. Amazon could drastically change Kindle pricing between now and then; new, better competitors could roll along; or new devices like a colour- or touchscreen Kindle could boost sales. But either way it’s possible the Kindle could be a real business for Amazon in a few years. (It’s already an impressive per cent of books sold, given its tiny distribution so far.)

Anmuth also estimates that Amazon sold 325,000 to 350,000 Kindle 2s in Q1 based on analysing stats from Kindle partner Sprint Nextel. This is roughly in line with another report suggesting 300,000 sales. (And, given the backlog from last November to this February, isn’t surprising.)

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