Giant online retailer Amazon is rumoured to be planning to give away free Kindle e-book readers to its Amazon Prime subscribers, something that could well boost its sales figure, both for the Kindle and Amazon products in general.
According to Michael Arrington of Techcrunch, all those paying the annual fee of $79 (or £49) would get one. Amazon Prime allows you to get a free two day shipping on everything purchased in the US. In the UK, this is an unlimited one-day delivery.
The system has taken a bit of a hit in the UK when Amazon announced that it would make shipping free on all products sold by Amazon direct regardless of the price, although the shipping time itself can increase to more than a couple of days in this case.
According to Arrington, Prime customers, at least in the US, are Amazon's best customers as they generate the most revenues. Such a scheme would fit what we consider to be the logical next step, moving to subscription solution.
One can expect the number of Amazon Prime subscribers to swell considerably if Amazon announces such a deal. Already some Prime users on Techcrunch are saying that this would be the icing on the cake and would incite many to buy books from Amazon.
Ironically, if more subscribers switch from buying physical books to electronics ones, the need for the Amazon Prime will decrease significantly. You can find more about Prime Club in the UK here.
Now it would absolutely superb (and potentially a massive blow) if Amazon announced this just before Apple launches its iPad officially. One can only salivate at seeing those two giants take on each other in a massive mother of all battles to determine who is the king of tablets.