While Amazon remains deafeningly silent over how many Kindles it has sold – except to say that new orders won’t be fulfilled for the next eleven to thirteen weeks – Sony, its main competitor in the eBook reader space, isn’t being so shy.
Claiming to have exceeded the company’s own forecasts, Sony says it sold 300,000 units of its Sony Reader device since its October 2006 launch (WSJ). Interestingly, however, Forrester Research estimates that 400,000 Kindles have sold since its launch in November 2007, which, if true, means that Amazon has done considerably better in a much shorter amount of time, possibly due to better marketing — it’s hard to beat the Amazon brand and e-store when it comes to selling anything book-related.
Although both sets of numbers are nothing to be scoffed at, it doesn’t yet amount to an ‘iPod moment’, notes paidContent. Apple sold 1.3 million units of its music player in the first two years, even if it took considerably longer for the iPod to really go mainstream.
Talking of mainstream, last week my Dad requested a Sony Reader for Christmas after trying out a colleague’s. If that’s any indication, perhaps eBook readers could reach a tipping point sooner than we think?