Turns out, people will gladly stare at an occasional ad on their Kindles to save a little money.
Amazon’s Kindle with Special Offers, an e-reader that shows advertisements and discounts on its home screen, is now available with a 3G connection. Like the Wi-Fi model, the 3G Kindle with Special Offers is $25 cheaper than its ad-free counterpart, selling for $164. The Wi-Fi version sells for $114.
There’s not much more to say about the actual device, but Amazon’s press release does a bit of boasting to prove that the ad- and offer-supported idea took off. After five weeks on the market, the Kindle with Special Offers became the best-selling model. The addition of a 3G version was “in response to customer requests,” Kindle Director Jay Marine said. In other words, this idea isn’t going away.
So why stop there? Given that the ad-supported Kindles include some lucrative deals — $10 for a $20 Amazon gift card, for instance — I’m sure there are some existing Kindle owners who’d like to opt in. And although Amazon has pooh-poohed the idea of ad-supported e-books, I still think it’s something customers would like.
One other open question: Now that Kindle with Special Offers has proven itself, how long until Barnes & Noble or Kobo try to figure out something similar?