Kindle sales rocket; ebooks outsell real books 2:1

Oct 25, 2010
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Amazon has announced record sales for their Kindle ereader, as well as that ebook sales are exceeding hardback and paperback sales by over 2-to-1.  According to SVP Steve Kessel "it's still October and we’ve already sold more Kindle devices since launch than we did during the entire fourth quarter of last year"; that makes the Kindle the best selling product on both Amazon US and Amazon UK.

The timing of Amazon's announcement - on the eve of Barnes & Noble's NYC event at which the rival bookseller is expected to announce the NOOK Color ereader tablet - seems unlikely to be a coincidence.  We're guessing Amazon are hoping to overshadow the new NOOK Color by underlining their market dominance; not that, if the figures are anything to go by, they really need to hammer home the point.

Press Release:

New Generation Kindle Device Sales Already Surpass Fourth Quarter 2009 – The Peak Holiday Shopping Season and Busiest Time of Year on Amazon

Amazon.com Customers Now Buying More Bestsellers on Kindle Than Paperbacks and Hardcovers Combined—At a Rate of 2 to 1

SEATTLE—October 25, 2010—(NASDAQ: AMZN)—The new generation Kindle devices are the fastest-selling Kindles of all time and the bestselling products on Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk. Today, Amazon.com announced that sales of the new generation Kindle devices since their introduction have already surpassed total Kindle device sales from October through December 2009.

“It’s still October and we’ve already sold more Kindle devices since launch than we did during the entire fourth quarter of last year—astonishing because the fourth quarter is the busiest time of year on Amazon,” said Steve Kessel, Senior Vice President, Amazon Kindle. “Readers continue to choose Kindle for its all-new electronic ink screen with 50 percent higher contrast, readability in bright sunlight, long battery life of up to one month, light 8.5 ounce form, flexibility to read their books across all major LCD devices and platforms, and low $139 price. It’s clear that this is going to be the biggest holiday for Kindle yet—by far.”

In addition, Kindle book unit sales continue to overtake print on Amazon.com, even while print book sales continue to grow. During the past 30 days, Amazon.com customers purchased more Kindle books than print books—hardcover and paperback combined—for the top 10, 25, 100, and 1,000 bestselling books on Amazon.com.

“For the top 10 bestselling books on Amazon.com, customers are choosing Kindle books over hardcover and paperback books combined at a rate of greater than 2 to 1. Kindle books are also outselling print books for the top 25, 100, and 1,000 bestsellers—it’s across the board,” said Kessel. “This is remarkable when you consider that we've been selling hardcover and paperback books for 15 years, and Kindle books for just 36 months.”

Other recent milestones for Kindle include:

In the 12 weeks following the introduction of the new generation Kindles, Kindle devices or Kindle-related items such as Kindle books and covers represented 15 of the top 15 bestselling items on Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk combined.

Amazon sold more than 3 times as many Kindle books in the first nine months of 2010 as in the first nine months of 2009.

The Association of American Publishers' latest data reports that e-book sales grew 193 percent between January and August 2010. Kindle book sales growth during the same period exceeded this rate.

Learn more about Kindle at http://www.amazon.com/kindle.


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