Originally Posted by fjtorres
Successful products do tend to coast on reputation past their point of clear superiority. The market has built-in lag that helps the big players get through rough patches (C.F. Windows Millenium, Vista; Toyota's current issues) as long as they actually respond with suitable follow-up products. If not, they go into a death-spiral (C.F. Palm). Brand loyalty only gets you so far and relying on it excessively will get you into serious trouble (C.F. PS3 launch).
Where Kindle is different is that Kindle is on the ascendancy; each generation of hardware (and software) has seen the product get better and improve not only its market share but its competitive position vis-a-vis the alternatives.
They haven't lapped the competition but they *are* pulling away, which is why the competition needs to start taking Kindle sales numbers seriously and start looking for ways to close the gap. Talking of openness or library access or touchscreens or build quality isn't doing it. Neither is sniffing hautilly about "sheep" or "marketing".
Kobo's international alliances and B&N's NookStudy efforts, on the other hand, do hold some promise of giving Amazon something ressembling a challenge.
Maybe other players can take their games to the next level, too. But they need to listen to what the market is telling us.
I agree with most of your comments, right now I think there is still time to close the gap and at least be close to being on equal footing. This isn't like when Apple came in and just took the mp3 world by storm. Mp3 players have just such a more wide appeal and market as compared to ereaders.
The Kindle may own something like 70% of the market but that 70% may only be like 5% or less of the total population of potential buyers. There is still a huge untapped market out there.
So you are right at some point Barnes and Noble and Sony are going to have to truely step it up in the advertising areana. BN isn't bad I would give them B, they do run some commericials, their instore marketing is strong and their packaging/looks is head and shoulders above the competion. It's packaged very well, from a design standpoint, to it's logo right down to it's actually packaging/box.
Sony they get an F. they zero marketing.
but I do disagree with on some selling points, especially ePub. It's puts the company in a tough spot because naturally you want to sell ebooks out of your own store but there are alot of kindle owners that are shocked to learn that you can check out books from the library and many have said, at least the ones I know, if they only knew before hand they would have bought something else, like the nook or sony.
So actually I think they need to pump up this feature.