Does the iPad face a threat from Amazon?

September 23, 2011

Amazon just sent out invitations to a media event Sept. 28 in New York. Could this be the launch of the long-awaited Kindle tablet?

The tablet, to refresh your memories, is supposed to be Amazon’s iPad killer: a 7-inch tablet backlit with access to e-books, videos and apps. Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos gave a winking, sort-of confirmation on an Amazon tablet in the future during an interview with Consumer Reports in May.

TechCrunch’s MG Siegler, who said he’s played with the WiFi-only tablet, predicts that it will undercut Apple’s iPad price by a sizable margin and start at $250. The tablet, he said, looks a lot like a BlackBerry PlayBook and will probably come with a free trial to Amazon Prime at launch.

Analyst Sarah Rotman Epps said all the way back in March that Amazon would be the only company that stands a chance of taking on Apple’s reign in the tablet market. The company’s access to content and the familiarity of its brand — particularly among electronics customers — put it in a fantastic position, Epps said.

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Hayley Tsukayama covers consumer technology for The Washington Post.
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