Amazon is offering its lowest price ever for an eReader. Of course, there’s a catch. You have to be willing to submit to ad viewing. I suppose it’s no worse than buying a television for the purpose of viewing commercial programming.
I’m really tempted, and I have to admit that this price point caught my attention. So does the promise of offers like $10 for a $20 Amazon gift card. This New York Times article quotes a Forrester analyst speculating that the Kindle with Special Offers could be a test-run for Amazon’s entry into the tablet market. That’s fine, but at this point, I don’t need my eReader to be a tablet. I can decide before I leave the house if I would prefer to read or use a computer. If I want to read I really do want eInk, but I also want the larger screen of the 9.7” Kindle DX (bonus—upgrading to a DX also allows you to play music while reading). And I prefer it at an eReader price, not a tablet one.
With the technology and pricing of eReaders continuing to improve, I doubt I’ll bite just yet. I want to see what Amazon will do with the Kindle DX pricing going into the end-of-the-year holiday buying season. Right now, the DX’s price point is $379 vs. the iPad2’s $638. Apple recently applied for a patent for a system that will toggle between an eInk and a video display while using the iPad. eInk would make the iPad more appealing, but it’s a pretty pricey eReader if that’s your primary use.
C’mon, Amazon. Bring the price of the DX down a bit lower, even with ads, and I’ll go for it.