It’s not every day that the media gets an invite to an Amazon press conference but its timing and venue has tech geeks and the entertainment industry in a bit of a buzz Thursday. Offering no clues, the invite gives no details about the presentation’s agenda.
The press conference is scheduled for September 6 at the Barker Hangar in Santa Monica, a common location for Los Angeles film shoots and private events. The date is just six days prior to the next Apple event on September 12, where many are speculating a new version of the iPhone will be revealed and/or a smaller version of the iPad amongst dozens of other rumors. Either way something new is being revealed as component prepayment is escalating this past year. So it would make sense that Amazon is trying to catch a week’s worth of buzz before whatever it is that Apple plans to unveil.
Is Amazon going to unleash an update their Kindle lineup with a bigger and better screen than the 7″ Kindle Fire? Below the price of an iPad 2 ($399)? Or do they have something more up their sleeve?
The Kindle Fire, now a year old is in need of an upgrade, but has sold nearly 15 million units at $199. Not bad, but other have come into the market. Google has their Nexus 7, Sony has the Tablet S, there’s the Galaxy Tab, the Lenovo, and there’s also the Kindle Fire’s direct e-book competitor, Barnes & Noble’s Nook Tablet. A backlit version of the black and white Kindle may be on the agenda too. But for Amazon to make an impact with this big hullabaloo, one might think a step up to the big fish–competing with Google and Apple–would be worthy of such an unveiling.
As seen with the Kindle Fire, price point has to be the driving force though to take a bite out of Apple’s hold on the tablet market–at least if we’re looking at the tablet purely as an entertainment machine providing movies, television, games, apps, music and books on the go. Do more for less as they say. As rumors are swirling of Apple designing down to its competitors, this announcement would be huge news if Amazon could jump up in technology at that sweet price of $299-$349. We’ve seen similar a similar situation when Playstation 3 faced battled with the Xbox 360 when Microsoft was willing to get below $300 long before Sony was willing to drop its price.
The press conference is taking place in Los Angeles so we have to believe there’s a big entertainment aspect to the press conference too. That could mean some new deals for their Instant Video store as more customers are finding ways to cut the cable. Either way we’ll be interested to see what Amazon has to announce on September 6.
What do you think the announcement(s) will be? Would you buy a bigger Kindle Fire over an iPad if it was considerably cheaper than $399 or would you just wait longer for a smaller version of the iPad?