Fire: Ready, Aim

If any company can give Apple a run for its iPad money it’s Amazon. Apple has spent the past decade proving that hardware doesn’t cut it without a service and content layer. And in doing so it showed the power of the inverse — how content needs a presence and a physicality to become real with consumers aged under 30.

So Amazon, the king of content retailers, has taken a big step up into a price war of platform+service+content. A month ago I read up on new Apple CEO Tim Cook and spent the past few weeks admiring how he made the iPad’s $499 price tag unassailable…

… and then here comes Kindle Fire. $199. Game on.

It’s aim will be right at the heart of the middle market, which is good news for content players waiting for signs of maturity. It’s Android-based, and will come with some native apps as well as some Amazon-flavoured ones.

The first casualties of war? The iPad wannabes: Motorola, RIM, Samsung, and anyone else who’s been trying to make a pad and doesn’t own a piece of the laptop/netbook market.

Geeks can get a spec comparison here: http://www.pcworld.com/article/240746/amazons_kindle_fire_tablet_vs_the_competition_spec_showdown.html

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About Morgan Holt

Morgan Holt is senior strategist at Wolff Olins, the global game-changing brand consultancy. He is also chairman of the Branded Content Marketing Association, and a non-executive director of CN Media Group.

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