The Kindle vs. The Gadget Hall Of Fame: How Will Amazon's Sales Stack Up? (AMZN)

How many Kindles will Amazon sell in its first year out? We’ve seen two estimates so far:

  • An Asian screen supplier is supposedly gearing up to provide Amazon (AMZN) with parts for more than 600,000 Kindles in the device’s first year.
  • Citi analyst Mark Mahaney makes a more modest guesstimate, pegging sales at half of the iPod’s (AAPL) first-year rate — about 190,000.

Well, time for context: How did other breakthrough gadgets do in their first year or so? All over the map. But if Amazon’s e-reader can get anywhere in the range of Mahaney’s estimate, it might not be the bust we first thought.

Amazon Kindle (2007)

Apple iPod (2001)

Apple iPhone
(2007)

RIM BlackBerry (1999)

Palm Pilot (1997)

Motorola Razr V3 (2004)

Nintendo Gameboy
(1989) 189,000 – 600,000 376,000 5.4 million* 165,000** 0.5-1 million 23 million 2.8 million*Number of Apple (AAPL) iPhones sold through the end of March, 2008; approx. 9 months of sales.
**Number of RIM (RIMM) BlackBerry users according to 2001 Annual Report, 2 years after its release.

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