Ad-supported Kindle hits the US; next step free?
There have been various whispers in recent weeks that Amazon could be moving towards a free version of the Kindle eBook reader subsidised either by ads or book purchases.
Well, that notion just got a little closer to reality with the announcement over in the US of the ‘Kindle with Special Offers’, a version of the popular reader that comes in $25 cheaper than the regular Kindle if you’re willing to put up with the odd advertising banner and screensaver.
The new model retails for just $114 (around £70), and the adverts are designed to be as unobtrusive as possible, appearing as banners at the bottom of the reading list or when the Kindle goes into screensaver mode. There will even be the facility to vote for which ads are most appealing to keep things on the right track.
US ebook fans will be able to get their hands on the Kindle with Special Offers from May 3, though at this stage there’s no plan to bring the subsidised Kindle to the UK. Still, if the notion of a free Kindle is to prove more than just a fantasy, this is surely a step in the right direction.