Target officially announced Tuesday that it will stop selling all Kindle products, and the speculation is that Apple is to blame.In a statement provided to The Verge, Target said that it is “phasing out Kindles and Amazon- and Kindle-branded products in the spring of 2012.” Target said their decision was intended to find the right “product assortment” for its customers, but the truth may have more to do with its business partners than its customers.
The Verge previously reported coming across a company memo saying Target would stop selling the products due to a “conflict of interest.” While the exact nature of this conflict was not revealed, The Verge notes that “Apple recently partnered with the retailer for a small number of mini-stores earlier this year.”
Given the rivalry between Apple and Amazon, it’s possible Amazon was upset by the increasing real estate of Apple products at Target and retaliated by threatening to withdraw all Kindles. It certainly seems like an extreme move, but then again, why else would Target get rid of the Kindle, but continue to sell similar products like the Nook?
Business Insider reached out to Apple, Amazon and Target for comment and will update this post if we hear back.