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Old 05-26-2009, 11:28 AM   #1
lyj898
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Kindle in overseas ?

Anybody has any ideas when the Kindle might find its way out of the US ?
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Old 05-26-2009, 01:05 PM   #2
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Anybody has any ideas when the Kindle might find its way out of the US ?
There are three hurdles:

1. Producing a version that uses GSM rather than CDMA. Probably not a particular big step - the comms system is pretty much a plug-in module on most of these devices.

2. Arranging the equivalent of Sprint's "Whispernet" system with a telecoms provider in whatever country they wish to sell it in. That's a HUGE deal, especially if you want to allow "international roaming", which would certainly be a requirement for European sales, for example. The legal issues are a nightmare.

3. Obtaining the legal right to sell books outside the US. Also a huge legal issue, since many books have US-only distribution rights, and different publishers in other countries.
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Old 05-26-2009, 03:18 PM   #3
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Harry,

I wonder if there's any technical barrier against them doing wi-fi rather than a Whispernet equivalent -- much like the iPod Touch, perhaps. That way, they wouldn't have to negotiate with any providers, and they won't run up against EU legislation.

Of course, it wouldn't be anywhere near as convenient as Whispernet. Then again, there are so many wi-fi hotspots around these days, it might not be too bad.

What are your thoughts?
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Old 05-26-2009, 06:41 PM   #4
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Old 05-27-2009, 04:51 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Mike L View Post
Harry,

I wonder if there's any technical barrier against them doing wi-fi rather than a Whispernet equivalent -- much like the iPod Touch, perhaps. That way, they wouldn't have to negotiate with any providers, and they won't run up against EU legislation.

Of course, it wouldn't be anywhere near as convenient as Whispernet. Then again, there are so many wi-fi hotspots around these days, it might not be too bad.

What are your thoughts?
I'd be happy to buy a European version of the Kindle that didn't have wireless access at all, and transfer books via USB.
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Old 05-27-2009, 05:31 AM   #6
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I'd be happy to buy a European version of the Kindle that didn't have wireless access at all, and transfer books via USB.
That is known as the Sony Reader. J/K, but why the love for the Kindle without whispernet when the Reader is available there?
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Old 05-27-2009, 07:10 AM   #7
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Quote:
I'd be happy to buy a European version of the Kindle that didn't have wireless access at all, and transfer books via USB.
In effect, that's what I've done. My Kindle is not specifically European, of course, but I can use it in Europe (or anywhere else), transfering via USB.
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Old 05-27-2009, 08:48 AM   #8
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That is known as the Sony Reader. J/K, but why the love for the Kindle without whispernet when the Reader is available there?
TTS, searching, annotation, the Amazon eBook store, to name but four. The Kindle has all sorts of things going for it even without Whispernet.
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Old 05-27-2009, 01:57 PM   #9
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TTS, searching, annotation, the Amazon eBook store, to name but four. The Kindle has all sorts of things going for it even without Whispernet.
Yep. When the Kindle first came out I didn't even remotely care about Whispernet. I'm quite comfortable loading stuff via USB. I figured it was for the tech-shy and I likely wouldn't use it very often. I cared about search and dictionary support. If the Sony had those, I would have bought one long before. When the Kindle came out with those two features, the biggest selection of content and the lowest book prices, I jumped on it.

I have since grown to love Whispernet and realize just how cool it is. It's the combination of the connectivity and the sample chapters which I find truly game changing but the Kindle still has plenty to offer even without it.
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Old 05-27-2009, 02:20 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by HarryT View Post
There are three hurdles:

2. Arranging the equivalent of Sprint's "Whispernet" system with a telecoms provider in whatever country they wish to sell it in. That's a HUGE deal, especially if you want to allow "international roaming", which would certainly be a requirement for European sales, for example. The legal issues are a nightmare.
I'm curious. How much does it cost the "whispernet" thingy? Downloading a 500KB book, for example, how much does it costs (besides the price of the book, obviously)?


Quote:
3. Obtaining the legal right to sell books outside the US. Also a huge legal issue, since many books have US-only distribution rights, and different publishers in other countries.
I don't see an issue here. Europeans would only be able to download the kindle editions from the Amazon.co.uk (and .fr and .de) stores, with the same restrictions. Unless for some reason a paperback can be sold here and the same ebook version can't.
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Old 05-27-2009, 03:12 PM   #11
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Using whispernet to download books from Amazon is free - no extra charge. Also no charge for Wikipedia access, web browser, etc. Emailing personal documents direct to the Kindle is .15/megabyte, but you don't have to email them, you can copy via USB.

The rights to digital books in different countries depends on contracts with authors and publishers, and may differ for each book and each country.
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Old 05-27-2009, 05:28 PM   #12
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Hmm - the Sony has no search then. Shocked I am. Question answered in spades.
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Old 05-27-2009, 05:33 PM   #13
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Using whispernet to download books from Amazon is free - no extra charge. Also no charge for Wikipedia access, web browser, etc. Emailing personal documents direct to the Kindle is .15/megabyte, but you don't have to email them, you can copy via USB.
Thanks. I guess the challenge would be for Amazon to arrange a similar FREE service like whispernet in Europe, where telecomunications are usually expensive (more in some countries than others, but surely more than in USA).


Quote:
The rights to digital books in different countries depends on contracts with authors and publishers, and may differ for each book and each country.
I know, I just thought that those books sold on amazon.co.uk, for example, already have those rights. Although the site is from England, it exports to many different european countries. Surely they have authorization to do so for said books. So I don't see why the same book in electronic version would have different restrictions.
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Old 05-27-2009, 06:36 PM   #14
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So I don't see why the same book in electronic version would have different restrictions.
It is crazy but true. Physical books ordered from Amazon in the US are deemed sold in the US even if shipped to (say) the UK, but ebooks ordered from Amazon in the US are deemed sold at your credit card billing address no matter where you may actually be ordering from. So far, ebook retailers in the UK are "shipping" world-wide. Either the law is different in the UK, or US-rights publishers have not yet woken up to what the UK-rights publishers are getting away with.
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Old 05-27-2009, 10:46 PM   #15
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Wifi is fine for distribution. The issue, as usual, is publishers and copyright laws.

Apple managed to get it sorted quickly with music/movies, and Amazon should have the same kind of marketing clout you would think, which pushes publishers to do the smart thing.

'Hopefully'' it will at least be in most of Europe and countries like Australia before 2011. It's a real problem for Amazon.
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