Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

E-Reader Race to Zero Speeds Up: Borders Cuts Prices on Kindle Killers You Probably Haven't Bought

You can see where this is headed: In June, the cheapest Kindle went for $259. One price cut and one product tweak later, Amazon’s (AMZN) entry level e-reader goes for $139.

Time to catch up, Kindle competitors that aren’t Apple (AAPL). Borders (BGP) is starting out by cutting the price of its flagship Kobo reader to $129, down from $149. And the super-low-end Aluratek Libre reader is now going for $99.99, down from $120.

Barnes & Noble’s (BKS) cheapest Nook, for the moment, is stuck at $149, but it’s hard to imagine that price sticking through Christmas.

Meanwhile, anyone have any sales data on any of these things? Amazon boasts that its new Kindles are its “fastest-selling ever.” And it declines, as always, to explain what that means in numerical terms. But I believe that’s as good as–or better than–Barnes & Noble, Borders, et al, which are even quieter about their sales.

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I think the NSA has a job to do and we need the NSA. But as (physicist) Robert Oppenheimer said, “When you see something that is technically sweet, you go ahead and do it and argue about what to do about it only after you’ve had your technical success. That is the way it was with the atomic bomb.”

— Phil Zimmerman, PGP inventor and Silent Circle co-founder, in an interview with Om Malik