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Innovation and New Product Development Case Study

Case Title:

Amazon's Kindle: Will it Spark e-book Reader's Fire?

Publication Year : 2010

Authors: D John, S Punithavathi and A Syed

Industry: Internet and e-commerce


Case Code: IPD0105IRC

Teaching Note: Not Available

Structured Assignment: Not Available

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Kindle is an e-book reader launched in the US by on-line bookseller Amazon in November 2007. It uses an electronic paper display and downloads content over Amazon Whispernet, which uses the Sprint EVDO network. At launch, the device retailed for $399 and subsequently the price was lowered to $359. Amazon adopted different strategies to establish its Kindle as a leading e-book reader. Analysts say that Amazon sells most of its Kindle books to customers for a price well below what it pays to the publishers. It also uses the growing popularity of Kindle to demand the publishers cut prices. Kindle is also perceived as a threat to the publishing industry. This case study helps to analyse the efforts undertaken by Amazon to promote its Kindle and how this new product would impact the publishing industry.

Pedagogical Objectives:

  • To study the trends and practices of the publishing industry in the US.
  • To analyse Kindle's opportunities and challenges.
  • To analyse whether the new product innovation, Kindle, is a threat to the publishing industry.

Keywords :  Amazon new product innovation, Amazon's Kindle, e-books, e-book reader, US publishing industry, Sony digital book, Association of American Publishers, iRex iLad, Book sales, Random house, Penguin, Wirelessly download, e-link technology, Benefits and advantages of e-books

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