Kindle DX: Big Screen, Big Price

The new larger Kindle, the "Kindle DX" was introduced today. With its 9.7-inch display it accommodates a full 8 x 11 1/2 inch page and is directed primarily at the student text book market, although it can equally be used for books, periodicals and newspapers just like the smaller Kindle 2. The price is also quite a bit larger than the already pricey Kindle 2, $489.

Sprint is still in the background here, providing "free" wireless access to Amazon (and the Internet). According to Brad Stone who was at the unveiling and blogged the event:

Three newspapers will offer a reduced price on the Kindle DX in exchange for a long-term subscription: The New York Times, The Boston Globe and The Washington Post. These offers will be available starting this summer in areas where home delivery of those papers is not available.

Kindle vs. DX

Don't look for Kindle or DX to save the newspapers or magazines (especially magazines) because the cost of these devices is too high to "mainstream" them. I'm guessing a mainstream price point would be about $250 or less. Later this year Kindle will have more competitors and we'll see how those are priced. Cheaper e-readers will force Kindle to discount its devices. If Apple develops a larger iPod Touch or tablet we'll see what that looks like and how it's priced. And ultimately color screens will be required.

Regardless the "e-reader" tablet is here for the long term. Eventually it will join smartphones and netbooks as a mobile Internet access device.