Greetings! I’m here on the way, way, west side of Manhattan with a couple hundred angry reporters, who were expecting to be the first to hear about Amazon’s new tablet. Alas, all of us seem to be behind Bloomberg, which published these details about the Kindle Fire a few minutes ago:
30-free trial to Amazon Prime.
So that may be that. Still, I’m sticking around to live blog the details anyway, because why not! Also, the lighting here is kind of cool – like a Virgin America flight, as Wired scribe Fred Vogelstein just noted.
9:57 am: Good morning! Amazon is piping in some Adele, which is basically what you have to listen at any big corporate media event these days. Good thing it’s pleasant enough.
10:01 am: In addition to specs, Bloomberg also now has a product shot they’re showing. We’ll have here shortly.
10:04 am: Here’s a video about people praising the Kindle. It’s easy to use, you see.
10:05 am: Here’s Jeff Bezos, in standard Bezoswear.
10:09 am: Apologies for tech issues. Trying again. All you’ve missed so far is Bezos conducting an oratorical victory lap to celebrate the Kindle’s success. Well-deserved, so can’t begrudge him.
10:13 am: OK – trying once more! Note sure if this is on our end, or the connection here. In any case we will soldier on.
10:14 am: Here’s a new product that isn’t the Kindle Fire: The Kindle Touch – a black-and-white touch screen Kindle. “Lighter, unbelievable build quality. People are going to love this device.”
10:14 am: Showing off new touch controls, critiquing Nook’s system. Doesn’t work for one-handed reading. “EasyReach” features new “tap zones”. “This is the kind of quality and nuance that you can focus on in a dedicated device.”
10:16 am: New “X-ray” feature — “lets you look at the bones of a book.” Tap on screen, click on term, get a Wikipedia link. Information isn’t accessed via wireless, but stored along with book data on device itself. “When we download the book to you, we also download a side file that has all of this interesting information.”
10:19 am: Bezos teasing us w/pricing, citing pundits who want a $99 Kindle.
10:20 am: Yup. $99.
10:21 am: And another device: Kindle Touch 3G. Free 3g.
10:22 am: $149 for this one. “This is the top of the line Kindle.”
10:22 am: Both these ship Nov 21, I believe he said. “We’re going to sell many millions of these.”
10:23 am: *More* Kindles coming. “What if you don’t want touch? Well then, you could have a $79 Kindle”. Actual gasp from someone in audience here.
10:24 am: “What we’re doing is making premium products and selling them at non-premium prices.”
This one is shipping today. “We’re going to sell many millions of these”
10:24 am: What about the Special Offers Kindle? Those have been best-selling Kindle, Bezos says. Now adding “AmazonLocal” to these. Based on my experience so far, this will not be a huge draw. Especially if you’re a dude.
10:26 am: Time for a commercial break. Two annoying 20somethings blabbing.
10:27 am: OK, time for main event.
10:27 am: Playing up video assets.
10:27 am: Chatting up Cloud Player. See where this is going?
10:28 am: And shout-outs for Android app store, and Amazon Prime. Getting closer…