Amazon to Rival iPad with Tablet 'Clone' This Fall

By Erin Harrison July 14, 2011

While Amazon isn’t known for its hardware, the online retail giant is set to roll out a so-called iPad clone this fall, according to several media reports.

Amazon is making a 9-inch Android-based tablet and will start selling it in the third quarter of this year, the Wall Street Journal reported.

“While Amazon has long offered digital content on its website, it has lacked much of the hardware to go with it. Now the Seattle company hopes customers will use its tablet to buy and rent that content, said people familiar with its thinking,” the Journal said.  

A third-quarter launch could play out in any number of scenarios. As Digital Trends points out, the timing could be a hit or miss for preliminary sales.

“If a third-quarter launch is correct, the Amazon Android tablet (tablets?) will be around in time for the holiday shopping season, a boon for sales. But if Apple launches the iPad 3,  iPad HD or whatever iPad-related product it’s bringing to the table next, it could seriously impact any of its challengers’ sales. Not to mention steal a load of buzz from any other product launch,” the report said.

Apple has reason to be concerned with Amazon’s latest venture, but analysts’ projections for the sale of Apple’s iPad 2 tablet computers were close to 1 million following its release this past spring, TechZone360 reported. So it’s not likely Amazon’s tablet would closely rival Apple’s – at least not anytime soon.

Business Insider predicts it’s more likely the Seattle-based company would likely compete in the mid-level market – that is if Amazon can offer better built-in entertainment services, a better built-in app store and lower pricing.

“If it can design decent hardware, there’s no reason Amazon couldn’t compete with the likes of Motorola, HTC, and Samsung in the mid-level Android tablet market,” the report said.

Want to learn more about the latest in communications and technology? Then be sure to attend ITEXPO West 2011, taking place Sept. 13-15, 2011, in Austin, Texas. ITEXPO offers an educational program to help corporate decision makers select the right IP-based voice, video, fax and unified communications solutions to improve their operations. It's also where service providers learn how to profitably roll out the services their subscribers are clamoring for – and where resellers can learn about new growth opportunities. To register, click here.

Erin Harrison is Executive Editor, Strategic Initiatives, for TMC, where she oversees the company's strategic editorial initiatives, including the launch of several new print and online initiatives. She plays an active role in the print publications and TechZone360, covering IP communications, information technology and other related topics. To read more of Erin's articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Jamie Epstein

Executive Editor, Strategic Initiatives

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