Top 10 reasons why Apple’s iPad means Kindle is kaput

TechCrunch presents a guest post from Ben Elowitz, who comes down very firmly on the Kindle-is-kaput side of the debate. Ben is co-founder and CEO of Wetpaint, a media company with an audience of 10 million monthly unique users; and author of the Digital Quartersblog,. Prior to Wetpaint, he co-founded Blue Nile (NILE), the largest online retailer of fine jewelry.

Top 10 Reasons Why Apple’s iPad Will Put Amazon’s Kindle Out of Business:
1) The multi-functional capability: It’s sooooo much more than a reader, it’s a whole-life device.
2) The screen: Full color, multi-touch screen, gestures, and more.
3) The compatibility: iPad supports ePub out of the box.
4) The iBookstore: Apple goes beyond Amazon to create a shopping experience.
5) The experience: Apple’s creation goes beyond, to make the experience fun and cool.
6) The economics: Publishers have been deeply concerned about price erosion with Amazon’s $9.99 pricing.
7) The apps: With iPad, ublishers can go beyond e-books, and create an app using one of the world’s most popular SDK platforms.
8) The marketplace: Sales of the iPad will mean exposure to so many more consumers than Kindle… Amazon won’t even release the number of Kindles sold, because the number of consumers buying its device pales next to Apple’s reach.
9) The price: For $10 more than a Kindle DX, consumers get an incredible ebook reader, and so much more with iPad.
10) The Apple factor (a.k.a. “sexy”): Amazon just doesn’t have that. As Jason Kottke says, “The iPad makes the Kindle look like it’s from the 1980’s.”

MacDailyNews Take: Make that the 1970s. As we’ve often said, the Kindle looks like something John Dykstra superglued together back in 1975. The Kindle didn’t need iPad’s help to look antiquated.

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: As regular readers know, we’re almost always right. wink Here’s how we reacted, spur of the moment, during our live coverage of Jobs’ iPad unveiling: “Amazon’s Kindle hardware, which wasn’t much to speak of in the first place, is dead.”

And here’s what we said on January 5, 2010: “When and if Apple’s tablet appears… well, let’s just say that Amazon should focus all of their attention on their Kindle software for Apple hardware than on Kindle hardware going forward.”

No, we never fell for Bezos’ Kindle B.S.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Marvin P.” for the heads up.]


  1. I just posted THIS on the Amazon/Kindle DX customer review forum:

    “I have carefully reviewed all the “specs” of the Kindle DX (here on the Amazon site)–along with a couple of hundred really scary reviews concerning product quality and customer support–and I confess that I just don’t get it. The price of this device is $489, and all it does is display book text in grayscale? Um, no color at all? How about backlighting? Does it have any productivity apps built in or available for purchase? How about games? Does it play music? Can you watch movies on it? Is e-mail possible? What’s up with surfing the web? Can I do a presentation at a business meeting with it? No? NO?? NO?????

    Um, please pardon my naivete in this arena, but why on earth would I buy this device when the new Apple iPad does almost EVERYTHING for only $10 more (not to mention having FOUR TIMES the memory/storage capability in the least expensive model)?

    Make no mistake: I love Amazon. I buy almost all of my tech devices here . . . but unless I’m missing something that’s obvious to others, the Kindle DX seems like a complete and utter waste of money today Am I wrong?”

    Let’s see if they’re honest enough to post it.

  2. I love my Kindle. I am having problems with the iPad because I guess I wanted something different. Nonetheless, I want one, and that says a great deal. I want it, I want to touch it, play with it, use it.

    I feel that way even though I know it can’t do anything new for me.

    On a side note… I am concerned about what appears to be the balkanization of Apple computing products to me.

    The entire App market place is locked away from the Mac and I don’t really understand why. Why not allow me to run these little apps on my Mac as well?

  3. Agree with everything except number 6. Without the cost of physical publication of books, there is NO reason those associated cost savings should not be passed on to the consumer. [regardless of the device] The days of 29 dollar hardcover books or *gasp* 100 dollar textbooks is over. Amazon was right to stick to their guns and mandate 10 dollars for an e-book.

  4. @F.Maxwell

    I was comparing what seems to be two “like” devices in the Kindle DX and the iPad Wi-Fi . . . not with the bottom of the line Kindle 6″, but your price comparison is valid.

    Of course, the 6″ Kindle has only 2GB of available memory, 1/8 that of the iPad, not very impressive considering it comes in at a little over half the price. Shouldn’t it, then, have 8GB?

    Also, having taught in public schools for 25 years here in the Mountain West, I’ve never seen a black & white textbook. They certainly do not exist in this century (or even the latter third of the previous one). In terms of its display, alone, the Kindle display is anachronistic and intolerable to anyone under the age of 25, perhaps 30. The world is in color, TV is in color, magazines and graphic novels are in color . . . what, exactly, is NOT?

    That said, and like you, I’m holding my breath for the release date of the iPad Wi-Fi 64. (Would anyone REALLY download a book via 3G rather than wi-fi? Would anyone REALLY have a Kindle or iPad without access to a wireless zone at home, work, or Starbucks? Perhaps so, and I’m just missing something here.

  5. While I agree this could be painful to the Kindle and other current grayscale alsorans. However, one advantage of those… is the free 3G delivery of purchased goods. For the US Kindle… my paper subscriptions or books come to me free. If I owned the International version… I could still get my USA Today or NY Times when I’m in Germany for free. I’m not going to get that when my iPad or whatever it ends of being called comes the end of April.

    I’ll still covet it though, and I’ll deny anyone that wants to put their greasy fingers on it.

  6. I’ll give you 8 reasons why the iPad will not kill the Kindle:

    1. Price. The most popular Kindle costs $259.00
    2. 3G Access. Free on the Kindle.
    3. Screen. Kindle screen is much easier on the eyes.
    4. Battery. 10 hours for the iPad vs. 2 weeks for the Kindle.
    5. Size. Kindle 2 much easier to transport.
    6. Weight. Kindle 2 weighs about 10oz vs. 24oz for the iPad
    7. Book Price Bestsellers $9.99 via Kindle vs. $14-$15 via iPad.
    8. Keyboard – Virtual on iPad vs. mechanical on Kindle.

    This all assumes Amazon does nothing down the road to upgrade their current hardware – which is totally illogical.

  7. The cost of a book is based on the value of the intellectual property it contains, not the cost of printing and binding. The cost of a painting isn’t based on the cost of paint and canvas, just like the cost of music isn’t based on the cost of the plastic disc.

    While books should be cheaper electronically, especially for out of copyright texts which cost the publisher nothing to produce, I think it would be wrong to pay an author less for their work just because it is sold electronically.

  8. @theloniousMac

    I totally agree regarding iPhone/iPad apps on regular Macs. Given the emulator built into Xcode, obviously iPhone OS apps will run on Macs. And with the Magic Mouse, even desktop Macs have a Multi-touch interface now. Why not release that Xcode emulator as a regular app and let all Mac users buy and run iPhone apps?

  9. @If you say so
    I absolutly agree! I have a 10 old who’s backpack weighs in at 43.4 lbs. The sad part is she only weighs 63 lbs. This should outrage every parent with young ones in school. Any school district reps care to comment? I would love to hear your thoughts.

  10. I am very impressed with the iPad but I will wait until the 3rd or 4th gen to buy one.
    The iPad reminds me of the Newsreader on the film 2001: A Space Odyssey.
    I believe that the extra hardware and software additions will make it attractive enough for me to purchase an iPad. I need an Apple device for work.
    And I have my sights set on a 27″ iMac.
    As an ACMT I wonder if Apple will treat the iPad like the iPhone or an iPod, sending the device to depot for service or swapping it out at the GB.

  11. Everybody will find a reason for wanting one (or not, of course). Mine? I want to create digital art on this thing, i’ve played with sketchbook/brushes, but i want something bigger (and a better program quite frankly).

    I feel like there are many, MANY, niche’s that will stack up with the iPad to create a true reason for this thing to exist. It’s a bold statement, and I believe J. Ive when he says it’s the way forward.

    And honestly, my hand cannot take anymore mouse clicks. 15 years of hard .psd work has killed my hands. i cannot wait to use this product.

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