According to the online retailer, Black Friday 2011 was the best ever for Kindle device sales (which include its line of eReaders); Amazon sold four times as many Kindles as it did last year. While Amazon is always reluctant to provide hard numbers to back Kindle sales claims, comScore data indicates that Amazon was the most-visited online retailer this year. In fact, Amazon bested its closest competition, Walmart, by 50%.
And guess what each Amazon.com visitor saw – Amazon Kindle ads. Amazon is also peppering TV with Kindle ads and the Fire is available at Best Buy and Target, both online and in store. Of course, the fact that the tablet only costs $200 also helps push sales. But according to iSuppli, the Kindle Fire costs Amazon $201.70 to build (including parts and manufacturing). This does not take marketing costs into account, so the actual cost for Amazon to get the Kindle Fire into consumers’ hands is likely much higher. Amazon recoups the lost revenue on contents sales. The online retailer has robust movie, eBooks, magazine, TV show, music and app offerings.
Despite the prevalence of iTunes, Apple does not have Amazon’s market position when it comes to content. Apple is a hardware maker that makes money from device sales. Ditto for the Android tablet makers, which rely on Google for the majority of their apps, music and movies. In a sly move by Amazon, the majority of its content is also available for Android tablets.
Amazon will succeed in the tablet market because it can succeed. It can push its tablet and use its content to overcome the device’s technical shortcomings. It has a solid foundation of offerings, in which the hardware is only one part of the overall experience.
This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t read up on the Kindle Fire before buying one though. Check out our full review of Amazon’s tablet to see how it compares to the tablet competition.]]>