Take the Amazon Kindle sales logic test!


In its fourth quarter ended Dec. 31, 2008, Amazon.com, Inc. reported $3.63 billion in North American segment sales, $3.07 billion in international segment sales, $2.89 billion in worldwide electronics and other general merchandise sales …

Oh yes, and Amazon reported no sales data on the Kindle.

This is a noteworthy PR move because analysts and pundits are lauding the Kindle as being a hot-seller despite the fact Amazon has released no sales figures for the e-book device. Amazon pushes the Kindle (now updated in design) on its home page constantly, and crows it will transform how people read books. Stephen Dubner over at Freakonomics, usually an intelligent writer, illustrates the buy-in when he notes: “although Amazon is famously quiet about releasing sales figures, the consensus is that the Kindle has been a big success.”

So let’s do a logic test: Say you are Amazon and you launch a new technology product to great fanfare, and the numbers roll in, so you:

A. release the sales data to boost your stock, since you’ve exceeded expectations;
B. don’t release the data, since true figures wouldn’t meet expectations and thus would hammer your stock.

Hmm. No, really, Amazon, we believe you. Feel free to comment below with the actual Kindle sales results.

2 thoughts on “Take the Amazon Kindle sales logic test!

  1. Given the non-stop promotion on Amazon’s home page, one of the top web sites in the world, I’m sure a few Kindles were sold. But if we are to judge the merits of a new technology, one benchmark is the sales adoption curve (remember the heat and scrutiny Apple took when the iPhone had trouble hitting the first sales targets). Investors really ought to know how this device is doing, and whether it holds the promise for Amazon that Amazon claims.

    I’m a fan of new technology and reading. I just want to know, from a public company, how it’s going. All the secrecy seems to point to some trouble in the adoption curve.

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