Kindle: For users, the numbers just don’t add up

Amazon Kindle Book Pricing Number Fudge – Technology Evangelist:

“If Amazon wanted to give a more HONEST example of Kindle ebook pricing, they would have compared the Kindle book prices to what those NY Times bestsellers cost in hardcover form on their own site.

It turns out that Amazon sells brand new hardcover versions for $16-17 for the titles mentioned above.

This is a significant difference, because it more than doubles (almost triples) the number of titles one would need to purchase before one breaks even on the Kindle.

Also, notice that the current USED price for the title mentioned above is only $2-6 below the NEW price. In theory, this means you could buy a new copy and sell it to someone else for a net of half of the Kindle. You can’t sell – or even give your Kindle version to a friend.”

Kindle is a great example of the process of messing up the change from selling atoms to selling bits. For any change like this, there are benefits to be had. The question, though, is do you concentrate on features which benefit the user, or do you use the switch from atoms to bits to try and increase your profit margin hugely?

Although Kindle at least provides something of a service – all that EVDO which users aren’t paying for – the books themselves fail to add enough value for the price users are being expected to pay.

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