Amazon’s plans to roll out the Kindle ebook reader range in Europe has hit a snag, after talks with German carriers broke down over pricing disagreement. According to German WirtschaftsWoche, Amazon were unable to reach what they believed to be a fair price with local carriers such as Vodafone and T-Mobile.
One unnamed Amazon manager described the carriers’ price demands as “excessive”, according to the paper. Apparently Amazon’s German partners have confirmed that no deal has been made.
The nature of the Kindle/carrier partnership is unusual, because Amazon include lifetime wireless access for their ebook reader with the original purchase price of the device. Rather than requiring users to sign up to a data contract, Amazon negotiate access for the Kindle with the carriers themselves; in the US, that agreement is with Sprint. Only actions which might have significant cost – such as converting and wirelessly-delivering a user’s own documents over the network – are billable.
[via MobileRead forums]