China’s long wait for Amazon’s devices could soon finally be over, according to a report that claims the Kindle reader and Kindle Fire will officially launch in the country on June 7.
According to a Sina Tech report, sources said Amazon may have pinned down the date, but it has struggled to gauge pricing and is still awaiting final approval from the headquarters.
Besides Amazon’s own online store, the Kindle will also reportedly be sold via Suning.com, the online branch of electronics retailer Suning Appliance. It is also said to be available through offline channels including Suning shopfronts.
While there has been plenty of speculation, a photo from Weibo user @Mr_各种浪 gives more credence to reports. He recently captured a photo of the Kindle product counter that has been set up at Suning, though he clarified that there was no sign of the product itself and salespeople didn’t know the retail price when asked. (You can see the image taken off the Weibo below.)
Amazon’s Kindle launch in China has been plagued with problems, as the company seeks to stave off challenges related to rampant piracy in the country that has made Chinese consumers unused to paying for digital content. The Sina Tech report says that, over the past few months, Amazon has shut down Chinese site Ikandou’s download channels for Kindle eBooks, and clamped down on Douban’s Kindle function.
Amazon last year quietly launched Chinese versions of its Kindle apps for iOS and Android and a localized Kindle electronic bookstore, hinting that the Kindle would arrive imminently, but a credible rumour that it would launch on April 16 this year came and went without any news. Earlier this month, Amazon opened its Android-oriented Appstore in China, clearing the way for it to sell its own hardware in the country.