Posted by: brian | December 30, 2008

File under "Duh"

A year or so back, maybe longer – I don’t remember exactly, and that’s not really what’s important – Amazon came out with the Kindle, an e-book reader. That’s all it does. You download digital books or periodicals into it for reading. It doesn’t take pictures, it doesn’t give you directions to the nearest Dunkin Donuts, it doesn’t allow you send text messages or make phone calls, and it doesn’t have Facebook (i.e., an internet connection).

Sidebar: Ben commented on this, & I’ve noticed it too. All sorts of multiphones are being advertised as “having Facebook,” as if that particular feature is somehow special and distinct from having access to the internet. WTF?

When the Kindle was released, I thought, “Why would anyone buy a single-purpose device? People are already foregoing separate devices for MP3 playback, picture-taking, and telephone functions. How hard would it be to have them download books too?”

Unsurprisingly, people are doing just that. I already drag around a cell phone and an iPod, and if I had a decent and small camera (the crappy one in my current phone doesn’t count), I’d probably lug it around more often to photograph interesting and/or funny things I see. Why would I add another piece of equipment? It makes no sense, and I expect there’ll be a glut of Kindles available on eBay (if there aren’t already) as people realize how useless they are. What? Oh. Never mind.

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