Price policy and product availability of the current model may suggest Amazon is making space for a new entry-level Kindle.
Are you asking yourself a question: will the new basic Kindle be released in 2019? You don’t need the Paperwhite, not mentioning the Oasis, and you don’t want to pay more than $80. You want to know when the new generation entry-level model will be launched, right?
The next basic Kindle may come sooner than you think, despite no rumors, image leaks, or FCC filing news.
The three facts described below may signal the new Kindle (11th-generation) would come in the next months, even weeks. Amazon’s latest decisions may suggest the company wants to sell the remaining stock.
The current model – the 8th-generation Kindle – was launched in July 2016. It’s almost three years ago.
Life cycle of e-readers is longer than tablets, but three years were the maximum timeframe so far. Kindle Paperwhite 4 was launched three years after its predecessor. It took Amazon only 18 months to replace Kindle Oasis with the 2nd-generation model.
What makes me think we can expect the new Kindle this year? It’s a result of a day-to-day analysis of availability and price fluctuations of the current model.
1. Amazon stopped selling the basic Kindle with special offers
When National Reading Month 2019 deals were revealed, the basic Kindle with special offers was offered at a price reduced to $49.99. The $30 price drop is usual for shopping events, such as Black Friday, Prime Day, or National Reading Month.
The thing is that it took less than a day to clear the stock. In a few hours after the deal was revealed, the availability of the version with ads was set at mid-April. And in the next hours, the variant was gone completely.
Now, you can only buy it as used via Amazon Warehouse or get a refurbished one.
2. The basic Kindle without ads was offered with a record 50% price cut
You rarely see a price of a Kindle or Fire being cut by 50%. In fact, I have never seen it before. The deepest price cuts of Kindle e-readers (not bundles), offered during Prime Day or Black Friday, were not crossing 40%.
50% off the basic Kindle. This happened for a first time a few days ago. A version without ads was offered for $49.99, instead of $99.99.
And, again, the status has been changed to “currently unavailable” in a few hours. Amazon doesn’t even state when the model will be back on stock.
3. International version of the basic Kindle has gone completely
As you may know, Amazon sells two versions of each Kindle model through the US Kindle Store.
One is addressed to US customers, and is offered with and without special offers. An international version has a different ASIN number, can be shipped abroad, and is available without special offers.
Right now, the international version of Kindle 8 is gone. You can’t find it through search. Even if you open a specific url link, you will either be redirected to the US version (which is out of stock) or see a 404 error page.
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Obviously, the Kindle may have sold out so quickly because of a demand much increasing Amazon’s estimates. It would prove consumers still love the current model.
Amazon may order a next batch of the current model, and everything will be back to normal. Kindle 8 will be sold with bigger and bigger discounts for the next 12 months or even longer.
On the other hand, an upgrade is more than needed.
The 8th-generation Kindle was the first Amazon e-reader with a Bluetooth module, to let users play audiobooks via connected earphones or speakers. But how you can turn the device with only 4 GB of storage (3 GB available to user) into a fully-fledged audiobook player?
A bigger internal memory seems to be the most urgent upgrade. And it doesn’t seem to be a great challenge.
I don’t expect an e-reader to be waterproof. I don’t need an edge-to-edge glass front. What I would love to see is a crispier screen with a higher contrast – borrowed from a Paperwhite?
If the Kindle 8 doesn’t return in the next few days or weeks, we may witness an unexpected announcement from Amazon.
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