Amazon’s e-reader foray into India is off to a “good, exciting start”, with the e-commerce giant looking at ways to further lower prices of its Kindle tablets and offer a better bang-for-the-buck, according to David Limp, who heads the company’s Kindle division.

The online retailer had first introduced its trademark e-reader, the Kindle, in India last August.

It later expanded its offerings to include the higher-end Kindle Fire range, and Kindle Paperwhite a few months ago.

“We have an entry-level Kindle which is at Rs. 6,000 and people here love that price. But the feedback we’re getting also asks when they can get the Paperwhite at that price! Over time, we want to be able cut costs and offer more features at the entry-level,” said Mr. Limp, Vice -President, Kindle, in an interaction with The Hindu on Tuesday.

“Over a period of time, it won’t happen tomorrow, the technology might migrate downwards. Until then, we’re going to try to span across many price points,” he added.

Amazon is also learning extensively from the Indian market, according to Mr. Limp, and is looking for the Indian equivalent of the ‘Japanese manga angle’ that allowed the company to see good success in Japan.

“Yes, we are [talking to Indian publishers], but, more importantly, we’re trying to learn the intricacies of this market. In Japan, for instance, Manga comics is an important category for reading. Once we optimised for that, we saw success… we’re looking for an equivalent of that in India,” he said.

Talking about the differences in Indian market, compared to other countries, Mr. Limp pointed to the reading habits of the Indian consumer.

“Look at the mass transit system here … commuters are doing everything on it except reading! And, if even if they read, it’s a physical newspaper. Its still Day 1 for us in India, we have a lot to do,” he said.


Amazon Kindle Fire in IndiaJune 13, 2013

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