Amazon Tablet Hinted To Make Autumn Appearance

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Amazon is said to be hoping to sell a cool four million of its rumoured tablet devices during 2011

Amazon.com is reportedly readying its tablet device for a August or September launch, but in what seems a tall order, it apparently expects to shift 4 million units during the remainder of 2011.

Citing Taiwanese component makers, DigiTimes said Amazon will use processors from Texas Instruments, with Taiwan’s Wintek to supply touch panels, ILI Technology putting in LCD driver ICs.

Quanta Computer will apparently build the machines.

Holiday Arrival

Amazon is targeting the launch to rev up tablet sales heading into the busy holiday season, which is when Apple’s iPad enjoyed a lot of success in 2010. Apple has sold more than 20 million iPads to date.

Rumours of an Amazon tablet based on Google’s Android operating system have been floating around for months, but Amazon.com CEO Jeff Bezos fueled the rumours in May when he told Consumer Reports to “stay tuned” when asked if there was an Amazon device other than a Kindle coming.

Bezos later waxed enthusiastic about tablets and said at Amazon’s shareholders’ meeting 7 June:

“Most of our customers shop with us from desktop or laptop computers, but people have a different posture with tablets. They “lean back on their sofa. People leaning back on their sofa, buying things from Amazon, is another tailwind for our business, so I’m very excited about that.”

Bezos is excited about the potential for tablets to help push the company’s Amazon Instant Video streaming movie and TV content, as well music from the Amazon MP3 Music Store and Cloud Player, and books from its Kindle store.

Bezos knows from the Kindle e-reader business ecosystem that owning a device to sell enables his company to control the content on them.

Undercutting Apple?

Moreover, it is likely Amazon would significantly subsidise its tablets to undercut the competition, making it attractive at a time when the bulk of tablet buyers are choosing the iPad for $499 (£308) and up.

An Amazon tablet for $400 (£247) or less could sway cost-conscious consumers, provided the slate was attractive and competitive.

Amazon could even pair the machine with ads, following its ad-supported Kindle.

The current rumours have Samsung building one or more slates for Amazon, powering it with Nvidia Kal-el quad-core processors.

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