Twitter: Kindle DX an Expensive Start to a New Era

Amazon’s announcement this morning of the Kindle DX dominated tech news today. The new version of the web commerce giant’s e-book reader features a larger screen than its predecessor, the Kindle 2, and a host of other improvements including improved support for PDF documents. It also carries a whopping $489 price tag, which may prove an obstacle to Amazon’s plan to supplant physical textbooks in schools.

Reading TechCrunch’s post “What Does Twitter Think About the Kindle DX today?” I was inspired to do an analysis of a sample of 1500 or so of today’s Tweets using our Voxtrot Opinion technology. After reading through a few pages of Tweets, I set the system loose on the remainder with some interesting results:

twitterdxgraph1

Although the device itself is gathering huge amounts of attention, more than a third of the non-news Tweets are focused on the implications of the DX for the newspaper and textbook industries. The DX’s 9.7 inch screen may be approaching a tipping point, where e-readers become a credible alternative for a much broader array of printed media than ever before. Seeing the amount of buzz around the improved support for PDF, I am further convinced that technologically at least, the e-reader has arrived.
Practically speaking, although the Kindle DX seems to be on everybody’s wish list, the $500 ask is a major sticking point for Tweeters. Even with the economy showing signs of recovery (bottoming, crumbling at a slower rate, whatever) I wouldn’t be surprised to see retail DX sales struggle for some time.
That said, today’s announcment represents a huge moment for Amazon and another milestone in what looks to be a very bright future for e-readers.

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