It's been a year since Amazon released its Linux-based Kindle Ebook Reader into its online store and currently more than 200,000 people have purchased one. Are you going to join the fray at almost 400USD or wait for my bombshell?
I suggest you wait.
There have been several articles surrounding the little Kindle lately but the most interesting one is on ZDNet titled Kindle Economics. It's a good article but I think there's a better way.
Amazon needs to revamp the Kindle into a more reader friendly sized device, perhaps a 9x6 inch screen (The entire Kindle is only about 7.5x5 inches). I like portability too but come on--you're dealing with an aging population here--have a heart.
The real reason I think we should all wait before buying into the whole Kindle thing is that Amazon should actually give away these things or make them available at cost. How will they make money? Simple. Sell a book subscription with the device. It's kind of the same logic as the book clubs that we (or your parents) belonged to. You signed up to get 5 free books and promised to purchase 5 more books over the next 3 years. It was a win-win situation for everyone.
Here's what I propose for the Amazon Kindle: Give away the device or, as I said, sell it at cost and bundle it with a subscription for say 10 ebook purchases over the next 2 years. Students and teachers alike would flock to it--and not just at the University level--all levels. It would make switching to ebooks easy and affordable because right now, it isn't either.
So, how about it Amazon? A Kindle subscription program where everyone benefits sounds like a good idea to me. What do you think?