Jeff “Michael Stipe Awake” Bezos told a set of analysts that the Kindle – as a physical object – and the ebook store are two different and separate animals and that the device team is completely separate from the ebook sales business. Why is this important? It means that Bezos sees his future in the selling of bits, not e-ink screens, and the addition of mobile readers for the iPhone and other mobile devices is not a fluke – it’s a business plan.
“The device team has the job of making the most remarkable purpose-built reading device in the world,” Mr. Bezos said. “We are going to give the device team competition. We will make Kindle books, at the same $9.99 price points, available on the iPhone, and other mobile devices and other computing devices.”
This is cold comfort for those who might have already paid $300 or more for a Kindle but it also means that more and more folks can join the paperless revolution.
It makes economic sense for Amazon to pitch and drive ebook adoption. It costs nothing to ship and ebook and customer service costs are nil. The only real issue is becoming the first mover in what could be a large and spacious market, which Amazon has already done. I look forward to being able to read my Kindle books anywhere, including my iPhone, although I don’t welcome the readers becoming obsolete.