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Last December I noted that there was a deal for the Kindle Fire that made it the best day to-date for buying an Amazon Kindle Fire. Today’s deal makes that deal look like child’s play. Today only, Amazon is offering refurbished Kindle Fire devices for $139! The deal is the Gold Box deal of the day and Amazon notes that supplies are limited. If you want a Kindle Fire, today is the best day to become an owner of the 7″ tablet.
You can read the full explanation about the refubished Kindle Fire devices on Amazon’s website. Here are the important bits:
Prior to sale, every pre-owned Kindle undergoes a rigorous refurbishment process including:
- Full diagnostic test
- Replacement of any defective parts identified in testing
- Thorough cleaning and inspection process
- Complete repackaging with a new box
- Most recent software version update available for the product.
- Final QA inspection before acceptance as Certified Refurbished stock.
The refurb Kindle devices have the same return policy as the new devices and come with the same warranty. You also get the free one month of Prime as well.
I have purchased multiple refurb laptops from Dell and a refurb iPod from Apple and all three devices look brand new and have been just as reliable. What I generally don’t trust refurbs from third-party companies, this Kindle deal is direct from Amazon so you know they will stand behind the device should anything go wrong.
Last week I was shopping at Staples and I played with the Amazon Kindle Fire. It really is a nice looking device, it’s thin and the 7″ size seems like a good portable tablet compared to the Galaxy Tab 10.1″ which I use nearly exclusively at home. Eventually I think I will get a 7″ tablet so that I can keep it in my car’s glove box for on-demand meetings and on-the-go connectivity (unless I finally upgrade my Windows Mobile 6 smartphone). There have been some posts about security issues and other flaws with the Kindle Fire but Amazon appears to be working on fixes. Marco Arment has a thorough and very critical review of the device.
If you want to get the Kindle Fire, I think today is your best chance to get a good deal. It’s been nearly impossible to find a good deal on the Kindle Fire since retailers other than Amazon (e.g. Staples, Office Max, etc.) don’t allow coupons to be used on Kindle products.
The deal is available today only and you need to have a Mastercard. Amazon and Mastercard are running a deal, for today only, that offers $10 off a $100 purchase and then an additional $10 certificate will be sent to you to use in the future on a $50 purchase. Make sure to read the terms and conditions of the offer.
So you can pick up the Kindle Fire for a net of $179 with free shipping and no tax for most. The coupon can also be used on the Kindle Touch 3G and Kindle Keyboard 3G since they are over $100. If you want the Kindle Touch or basic Kindle, you will need a filler item to get over the $100 mark.
This morning Mike Arrington wrote a great advice piece to Amazon on the Kindle.
The gist of Mike’s argument is that Amazon should offer Kindle up as an operating system and reference design. This would allow third parties to create Kindle compatible devices in the same way that Dell, for example, makes PCs compatible with Windows. This would create an ecosystem around the product which would be incredibly powerful. And at the same time, Amazon would still be doing what it really wants to do, which is to sell books. By offering their own product which they should continue to sell, they get to work out all the kinks without any meddling third party companies telling it what to do. But by opening up the platform, they really get to have their control cake and to eat their large marketplace cake too.
Interestingly, this is really what Google should be doing with Android. Google is indeed licensing the Android OS to third party phone manufacturers, but by not creating and controling an initial reference design they are leaving important pieces of the design to third parties, in a field (mobile phones) where important design elements can be critical.
Anyway, getting back to Kindle, I have been a fan of the product concept but I do believe it will be very hard for Amazon to build up the kind of market that they really need and should have with such a device without getting some help. I hope they take Mike’s advice.
This article was authored by Hank Williams who is a New York-based entrepreneur who explores the tech marketplace from 10,000 feet at Why Does Everything Suck?.
It appears we scooped the Amazon CEO with our post yesterday that that Kindle book reader is back in stock at Amazon. This morning CEO Bezos has taken over the Amazon home page with the news about the ready-to-ship quantities of the Kindle. He has also prepared a letter to shareholders regarding the Kindle and its instant success with it selling out in 5 hours of launch. So far I can’t find how many Kindle’s they have sold. Over 2,000 Kindle users have reviewed the device so we know they produced at least that many.
A couple snips from the letter:
We knew Kindle would have to get out of the way, just like a physical book, so readers could become engrossed in the words and forget they’re reading on a device. We also knew we shouldn’t try to copy every last feature of a book—we could never out-book the book. We’d have to add new capabilities—ones that could never be possible with a traditional book.
At the beginning of our design process, we identified what we believe is the book’s most important feature. It disappears. When you read a book, you don’t notice the paper and the ink and the glue and the stitching. All of that dissolves, and what remains is the author’s world.
As I’ve noted, this year will be the test for the Kindle. The early adopters have theirs and now the difficult part begins – getting the average book reader to change something they have been doing all their lives.
I also wonder whether the masses will want to pay for an electronic book when they it’s clear that they won’t pay for content or music. Could Bezos usher in a new time when people will pay for content no matter how it’s consumed?
One of the most popular emails I receive on CN is, "Do you know when the Kindle will be back in stock?" I can only assume these inquiries come from my Kindle-related posts: Kindle availability issues, initial reasons for its failure and Scoble losing it on CEO Jeff Bezos. The Kindle has remained out-of-stock for most of the holiday and post-holiday season. It is back in stock now and you can pick one up for $399. This includes the wireless connectivity and the ability to purchase books, magazines and blogs.
Now that the initial early adopters purchased their Kindle device, will it continue to help push Amazon’s digital goods goals? If you have one, please report in on how you are using it and the number of items you’ve purchased to-date.
Here’s Alltop CEO Guy Kawasaki pimping the Kindle — Amazon does not that this was an unpaid endorsement.
I’ve written my 10 reasons the Kindle will fail and Scoble has provided his video on why it’s a failure in the making. Even if the Kindle was a great device, today I have a new reason for failure. And what really sucks is that this should be great news for Amazon affiliates. Amazon is offering its affiliates $40 comission for each Kindle sold through their site. I have been an Amazon affiliate since the program began years ago and have enjoyed it. Forty-dollars comission is awesome and could certainly brighten up anyone’s holiday season. I am sure many affiliates would want to promote this on their Web sites.
Amazon sent an email to its affiliates with an overview of the Kindle and how to setup the links (which is the same as any link). Here’s the issue, the Kindle is out of stock. And while they suggest on the Amazon product page that it’s out of stock only temporarily, this is what it says just below that:
Due to heavy customer demand, Kindle is temporarily sold out. Because we ship Kindles on a first-come, first-served basis, please ORDER NOW to reserve your place in line. Your Kindle will not arrive by December 25th. Note that Kindles cannot currently be sold or shipped to customers living outside of the U.S.
Who wants to order a device that won’t even ship for over a month? It’s going to be hard for any affiliate to pitch the Kindle to their readers when they won’t get the product for what could be months. And since Amazon pays comissions on shipped products only, the affiliate won’t realize the income for months either.
This is no Wii, was it so hard to manufacture enough for the holiday season?
I’ve never seen Scoble go off, but he has lost it today :) He goes off on the Kindle and his review. From what I can tell from watching his video, his concerns fall into three categories: ecommerce, usability and social networking. He looks more like the bad dude from MI:III in this video!
From what I can tell, it looks like the Kindle was developer-designed instead of designer/usability-designed. It’s certainly no iPod Touch.
Overall he believes that the product is not only designed poorly but it’s marketed poorly as well. His review is well thoughout and worth a view – I’ve embedded it below. Let’s look at each area of Scoble’s concerns:
Yes, he’s dead on. Why can’t I order any item from Amazon directly through the Kindle? This does make sense – especially as you show off the device. I can imagine it sparking discussion that might lead to purchase. And so many say that reading blogs with the Lynx browser is better than using the paid blog tool.
I can’t speak much to his complaints here as I do not have a Kindle, but the number one issue I hear across the board is that everyone clicks the movement buttons too easily no matter how you hold the device. He also rants on the backside of the Kindle. He also notes that it takes forever to change screens and the keyboard lag. He also calls the plastic, "cheap ass and saving a penny on the materials". Changing the menus makes it look like "a piece of crap". Lastly, the page numbers are not so good.
This is the area that I don’t agree with 100%. Scoble says that there should be social networking built-in. For the average person using this device, I am not sure they will care about being able to friend people or send them their book list. Of course if reading clubs were using the Kindle, then it certainly makes sense. And it makes sense for super-geeks.
His concerns follow along well with my Top 10 Reasons the Kindle Will Fail from last week. Here is his video review: