Amazon has been dominating the digital reader market within the United States ever since it launched the very first Kindle. With each new product update Amazon has continued to be at the very front of the digital reader market and that lead has now expanded all around the world. Other manufacturers offer digital readers including Sony, Kobo and others but the Amazon Kindle family continues to be the most popular.
Japanese e-commerce company Rakuten bought the Kobo digital reader to Japan back in July 2012 with the implicitly stated goal of beating Amazon. The company has reportedly been unable to deliver on that goal. A bit more than four months after the Kobo launched in Japan, Amazon rolled out its Kindle.
It didn’t take long for the Kindle to grab of 38.3% of the overall digital reader market with in Japan. By comparison, despite a lead to market of almost 5 months, the Kobo has 33% of the Japanese e-reader market for the same 12-month timeframe. Sony was left with only 25.5% of the market despite having the goal of selling half of all e-readers by 2012.
Amazon continues to play its goals close to the vest. Amazon currently sells its Kindle digital readers and 14 countries with Japan being the newest. An Amazon spokeswoman declined comment on specific goals for the Japanese market, but did offer a statement on Amazon’s overall objectives. She said Amazon’s objective is:
“Every book ever printed, in every language, available to buy in 60 seconds. There are many things to accomplish in order to achieve that vision in Japan.”