David Pogue gets an interview with Steve Jobs. This is the bit that concerns us:
Q: Has your opinion of e-readers changed?
A: I’m sure there will always be dedicated devices, and they may have a few advantages in doing just one thing. But I think the general-purpose devices will win the day because I think people just probably aren’t willing to pay for a dedicated device. You notice Amazon never says how much they sell; usually if they sell a lot of something, you want to tell everybody.
We don’t see that it’s a really big market at this point. And in the future, the more general-purpose devices will tend to win the day.
I’m not sure that Amazon, as an example, really cares that much about being in the hardware business. If I were Amazon, I’d love selling stuff where I didn’t have to have a warehouse, didn’t need UPS.
Emphasis added by me.
1) That general-purpose device is the smartphone and — when Apple finally gets around to it — a mini-tablet.
2) Yep, Amazon sure doesn’t crow about its sales, does it? Sony has stated it has sold somewhere over 400,000 of its Reader models. If Amazon had pushed out as many as analysts have speculated, it’d be something Bezos would crow about — very, very loudly.