Free Kindles! Free iPods!

What would you read on your Kindle?

I’m betting this headline got your attention.  I heard it on NPR Marketplace Money and thought it would appeal to students.

According to tech guru Kevin Kelly, one of the founders of Wired magazine and a favorite on TED, the downward pricing in products such as the Amazon Kindle e-book reader could indicate a trend resulting in the Kindle being given away free!

So what is Amazon’s motivation?  Well, once you have a Kindle, Amazon believes you will buy many electronic books from their site.  In the end, Amazon makes a lot of money off of the electronic books because there is no publishing or delivery process, just electronic files being pushed to your free Kindle. 

For the full story, listen to the audio from NPR Marketplace Money.

As you listen, ponder the following:

  • Would you purchase more electronic books from Amazon if they offered you a free Kindle?
  • Would you purchase electronic textbooks if they came bundled with a free or reduced-priced iPad?

4 Responses

  1. Stephen Kelly Says:

    This makes a lot of sense! I’ve only tinkered with an iPad once, and outside of that, I have no experience with any sort of tablet or eReader. However, if I was able to get one for a cheap price (read – free) then I could certainly get roped into the unknown.

    This could also make the widespread use of Kindles and other tablet products in academics financially tenable. Right now I think students are too burdened by other financial stresses to allow the use of these technologies, but if the hardware were free? Books are going to be paid for one way or another.

  2. Dawn Says:

    Although I still prefer to hold the actual book and turn the actual pages, I could probably be persuaded with a free kindle or inexpensive iPad.

  3. Dawn Says:

    I wonder…would college students prefer to read all their textbooks digitally? It would be less out of their wallet and a lot less to carry!

    I’m assuming it’s possible to highlight, underline, make notes, etc. within these readers correct? If not, I’d see that as a drawback.

    I know some students that still hesitate when it comes to technology.

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