You know, the Kindle killer. Well, I submit the following: Kindle 3, an iTablet killer.
Alright, it's not likely but it's not out of the realm of possibility. First, Kindle has a wide following if you believe Amazon that it is the most gifted item ever in its store. Second, it's got a wide lead on anything else on the market.
The original Kindle was lame but Kindle 2 did get enough folks onboard. With Kindle 3, with more features, than the original Kindle and Kindle 2, it ought to get even more folks interested in digital reading and the thousands of Kindle owners to upgrade.
So what features will Kindle 3 need in order to stop the iTablet in its tracks:
- Color - the iTablet will have color and the Kindle needs it as well
- Touch - needs touch. The iTablet will support Apple's famed multi-touch features
- App store - will need to support apps. also, allow users to order Amazon items directly.
- ePub support. Get rid of DRM
- Long Battery life - needs to exceed iTablet's own battery life rumored to be in the mid-teens of hours.
- Something to match the iPod Touch models. Maybe 3-4 inches. Call it "Kindle Mini"
- Needs better wireless support - bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and better data plans.
- Needs a full browser
- Needs to have Google apps or something along that line to match MobileMe
- Launch its own cloud services for the Kindle.
You're going to say "a lot of these features are things that the iTablet will have and Amazon is simply playing catch up". Well, you would be correct in a manner of speaking. However, I think that simply by keeping apace with iTablet, Amazon should manage to shift some of the craziness to the Kindle and establish it as an alternative to the iTablet.
Look at RIM. Even with the iPhone craze, Blackberries as a whole still outsell the iPhone, albeit with some clever "buy one get one free" deals. I am betting if Amazon creates a viable counterattack to the iTablet, it can use the momentum Apple's tablet creates for its own use.
And Perhaps with Kindle 4, Amazon will really be able to establish the Kindle brand as a tablet that also reads books.