Why The Kindle Is A Pocket Calculator

The first electronic calculator was built in 1961. It used vacuum tubes. And a lot of your desktop.

Twenty years later, credit card calculators were promotional giveaways on a par with wall calendars. And most people would have taken the calendar, so ubiquitous had portable maths become.

The Kindle hasn’t had a twenty year run. More like twenty months. And just as it began to move from the ‘Early Adopter’ to the ‘Early Majority’ phase, people are beginning to write its epitaph.

Too small. Too grey. Too late.

Courtesy of better technology created by a company with a plan.

I blush not at all at being an Apple evangelist. They are an extraordinary company in their ability to conceive, design and deliver.

Amazon, on the other hand, has struggled since its inception to differentiate strategically between ‘can’ and ‘should’. A shortcoming that required hundreds of millions of dollars in losses to discover that selling clicks to other vendors at 5 cents each is more profitable than building infrastructure and inventory.

The Kindle is a good product whose time has come and almost gone before it arrived.

A reactive creation by a reactive company.

As evidence I offer you this.

Apple’s iPad uses touch screen technology evolved from three years and 42.48 million units of experience with the iPhone. The iPad screen contains 1000 sensors over its 80 square inches. Anywhere you touch you’re in contact with six or seven.

Amazon’s response? Yesterday, they acquired a company called Touchco. A New York start-up that specializes in touchscreen technology.

Touchco has ‘roughly six employees’ and has yet to turn its technology into a commercial product.

I believe in technology, innovation and possibility. I believe David can beat Goliath on a regular basis these days. And I believe in dreams.

I also believe that if you own a Kindle, you should use it a lot between now and late April.

After that, it’s a doorstop.