Amazon has solidified its blossoming partnership with Target now that the two companies have announced plans for the brick and mortar retailer to sell the Kindle in all U.S. store locations.
Kindle will be available in all 1,740 Target stores in 49 states starting on Sunday, June 6. The e-reader will cost $259, which is the same price as the online price through Amazon, but first-time customers will be able to physically test the e-reader before purchasing it.
The two companies announced last month that the Kindle would find its way to a select 103 retail stores in Minneapolis and south Florida locations.
“Our guest’s response to Kindle has been overwhelmingly positive,” said Mark Schindele, Target Senior VP, in a press statement. “We are thrilled to bring guests nationwide this incredibly light, portable, easy-to-read product that allows them to get all the news and books they want.”
I think Amazon now feels the added pressure and is adjusting its marketing and public outreach to find new revenue streams. The company originally offered the e-reader through the Amazon website alone, but they need to become more flexible due to increased competition. Amazon prospered in an empty e-reader market when the Kindle was first released in 2007, but they must now deal with rival products ranging from the Barnes & Noble Nook, to Sony e-readers, to the Apple iPad. Kobo has a no-frills e-reader, while Asus and Acer also plan to enter the e-reader market.
In addition to increased competition, the Nook, which is available at B&N stores, can also be found at Best Buy.
According to research from early May, the Kindle controls 62 percent of the e-reader market, but the Apple iPad’s recent 2 million units sold sales figure — and the increase of other products – may help chip into Amazon’s dominance. A new version of the Kindle is rumored for launch in August, and it’s likely that Target will upgrade its stock to include the new models once they’re available.