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Kindle sold out – Kindle 3 around the corner?

July 28, 2010

As the tech blogs and market analysts discovered, the Kindle has been out of stock for 24 hours.  Everyone agrees on two possible explanations: 1) demand for the Kindle, in the wake of it’s lower price, has exceeded Amazon’s expectations (and, thus, their ordered supply from the manufacturer); 2) the yet-to-be-announced Kindle 3 is around the corner.

…one Wall Street analyst thinks the shortage means Amazon has slowed production of the current Kindle as it prepares to release a new device. “Historically, Kindle ‘out of stock’ statements have presaged the launch of new versions,” writes analyst Jim Friedland of Cowen and Co., who estimated the chance of there being a Kindle 3 soon at 80%. He expects a new Kindle to have a higher-contrast screen and be lighter and faster than the current device.
Wall Street Journal

Kindle-haters like to add a third possible reason–supply chain problems–but the first two explanations are far more likely. Both, it is worth noting, would be signs–further dumbfounding Apple-worshiping, non-book reading tech bloggers–of the continued life of the dedicated-ereader:

1. Selling out a 17-month old device (old, by tech industry standards) is an impressive feat.

2. Although details of the Kindle 3 remain secret, Mr. Bezos has confirmed several specifications that signal Amazon’s commitment, and belief, in the ereader:

  • E Ink
  • Black & white display
  • No touchscreen
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