Amazon takes Kindle international

Amazon plans to start selling its Kindle reader in over 100 countries and territories, and the company has already started booking preorders for the device on its website.

Share

Amazon plans to start selling its Kindle reader in over 100 countries and territories, and the company has already started booking preorders for the device on its website.

Amazon is selling the Kindle to customers in Asia, Africa, Europe, Australia and South America, for $279 (£175) for a reader with a 6 inch display and the ability to wirelessly download books and other content globally, the company said.

The Kindle was earlier only available in the US. Amazon has been working with publishers for months to build a vast selection of English language books available around the world, said Stephanie Mantello Ward, a spokeswoman for Amazon.

Amazon also has some books in languages other than English, but its focus right now is to provide its customers with the best possible experience for English language content, she added.

The Kindle will not be sold in China because Amazon is unable to ship the Kindle or offer Kindle content to Chinese customers, the company said.

“We want to ship Kindle everywhere, and we're working on it,” Ward said.

Best-seller books will cost $11.99 (£7.50) or more for international customers, with about 100,000 other titles available for less than $5.99 (£4), Amazon said. These prices are higher than in the US, where most best sellers cost $9.99 (£6).

As Amazon is selling from the US store, the prices of the books in international markets are denominated in dollars rather than local currencies. “We aren't announcing a timeline today for payments in other currencies,” Ward said.

Amazon also said that it is lowering the price of the 6 inch display Kindle in the US from $299 (£188) to $259 (£164). The Kindle DX, which has a 9.7 inch display, retails for $489 (£307).

The Kindle is 0.36 inches thick and weighs just over 10 ounces, Amazon said. Its 2GB of memory holds up to 1,500 books. The device also features an experimental text to speech feature, Amazon added.

Customers who buy a Kindle in a country without wireless coverage will be able to purchase content from the Kindle Store through a PC and download it to their Kindle through a USB (universal serial bus) cable, Ward said.

Find your next job with computerworld UK jobs