Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Will Amazon's Kindle Rescue Newspapers?

On Wednesday, Amazon is expected to introduce a new, bigger-screen Kindle aimed at the textbook market and newspapers. The Wall Street Journal reports that half a dozen universities will be giving students the new Kindles in the fall; Amazon has also struck deals with a number of textbook publishers.

Joining CEO Jeff Bezos on stage will be New York Times publisher Arthur Sulzberger — signaling some kind of partnership between the Times and Amazon. It's no secret that Sulzberger has been talking to everyone about how to save the Times; he recently visited Silicon Valley and had a number of salon-style dinners with technocrats offering advice. Amazon's Kindle, however, has already proven to be a promising source of revenue for the newspaper. The Times is already the best-read subscription-based periodical on the current Kindles — though how well read is anyone's guess. (The Wall Street Journal is the second best-read newspaper and has sold a mere 5,000 subscriptions to date.)

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