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Old 07-29-2020, 05:05 PM   #16
fjtorres
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Decades ago there was a segment on the 60 Minutes news show about distributors being restricted to selling only sodas made by Coke. Pepsi did the same thing. So grocery stores had to deal with two distributors instead of one. But it was more of a problem for the distributors. You'll also notice that when you go into a fast food place you can order Coke sodas, but not Pepsi sodas, or vice versa.
That's because they sign exclusivity deals.
Exclusivity deals aren't forbidden nor are they mandated. It's all about the contract terms.

Retailers carrying multiple brands is actually common.
(Walmart, Best buy, Gamestop, pretty much ever electronics retailer.)

Unless they have an exclusivity deal with Kobo there is nothing wrong with either a distributor or retailer carrying both Kindle and Kobo.
Best Buy used to carry both not too long ago. The carry XBOXes and Playstations as well as gaming PCs.

Retail is inherently darwinian.
Consumers rule by voting their wallets.
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Old 07-29-2020, 06:51 PM   #17
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Am I just being silly in thinking this is all kinds of wrong?
In the United States there used to be separate car dealers for each brand of auto, even in small cities. If a dealer wanted to "move up" from a smaller brand to a larger one (like American Motors to Chevrolet), he would be required to sell his old dealership (at least on paper). It was considered a conflict of interest by the auto manufacturers for dealers to sell their competitor's cars. Sometime (I think in the '80s) this changed. I guess the auto manufacturers came to the realization that a successful dealer for another brand could also be a successful dealer for their brand. So then you started seeing the same dealers name for several brands of cars (almost a complete monopoly in some cities). Which, at the time, seemed really strange to me.

As for the same distributor for Kindle/Kobo in South Africa... I would think that if the current distributor is not selling Kobos, Kobo would be able to pull their contract. But to do that they would probably need another distributor to take its place, so that's probably why it hasn't happened.

Have you looked at the possibility of buying a Kobo from TechInn.com? Supposedly they ship to South Africa (although it looks like they currently only have the Libra and Forma available).

https://www.techinn.com/#fq=id_tiend...o)+asc&start=0

Last edited by rcentros; 07-29-2020 at 07:19 PM.
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Old 07-29-2020, 07:23 PM   #18
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In the United States there used to be separate car dealers for each brand of auto, even in small cities. If a dealer wanted to "move up" from a smaller brand to a larger one (like American Motors to Chevrolet), he would be required to sell his old dealership (at least on paper). It was considered a conflict of interest by the auto manufacturers for dealers to sell their competitor's cars. Sometime (I think in the '80s) this changed.
Late 70's, IIRC; the gas crunch drove a lot of people to foreign (i.e., japanese) cars big time so a lot of dealers had to go hybrid, one part Detroit, one part japanese or european. After a while the bigger dealers opened multiple operations in different parts of town, selling a brand or two in one area and a different one elsewhere. By the 90's some of the bigger operations ran triple brands and the biggest had big exurban lots with maybe a dozen brands from all over.

Lots of brands have died since those days.
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Old 07-30-2020, 12:48 AM   #19
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Too many quotes to do so will just try answer then without quoting.

Takealot is retail circuitcity are the guys with the agency for kobo, they sell the kindles and kobo's to takealot and various other shops that are still stocking kindle.

Yes a company has the right to choose to keep stock etc.

As I was told by circuitcity kindle sells it's self, think his words where "sales slower than Kindle" Kindle is basically a house hold name in SA kobo not, so yes people will choose kindle and not kobo as sales guys know **** about the devices.

Circuitcity has not even asked kobo about supporting overdrive in SA and seems we have had it for 6 or so years. ( shock to me didn't know)

Ok, now to me Kindle is a yuppie or technically challenged as at first look easy to use if you not concerned about money. They have you credit card number already so it click you have your book you don't have to worry about looking around.

Kobo seems just as easy but also supports the mort cash conscious person, they more open to let people shop around and to support how open they are they already support 12 countries with overdrive.

This is South africa I am talking about, so with a little effort kobo should be doing as well as or even better than kindle.

But thecircuitcity is choosing not to import anymore as kindle is easier to sell.

Oh I can git political with the whole back white thing, but normally politics are banned on forums like this.

Did I clearly things up or make it worse, sorry I am a reader not a typer
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Old 07-30-2020, 02:30 AM   #20
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Unhappy

Haha, new message from kobo, they currently do not have a retailer in SA. So circuitcity is lieing and kobo's website is wrong.

This put me in a bad mood, messaged back to kobo. Like your mission statement
"At Kobo, we embody everything you love about your favourite local bookshop, perfected for your modern life. Our mission is to bring the power of reading to your world — because we're booklovers, just like you." Shame the world no longer includes SA.

Anyway sorry guys for the vent, but now it's cleared things up kindle or nothing.
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Old 07-30-2020, 07:37 AM   #21
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I've read in the past that the price of books in South Africa is very high. That probably drives demand down across the board (physical, Kindle, Kobo). Blaming that one company is reductive when there are deep underlying systemic issues with the market itself.
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Old 07-30-2020, 08:39 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by Gandulf View Post
Haha, new message from kobo, they currently do not have a retailer in SA. So circuitcity is lieing and kobo's website is wrong.

This put me in a bad mood, messaged back to kobo. Like your mission statement
"At Kobo, we embody everything you love about your favourite local bookshop, perfected for your modern life. Our mission is to bring the power of reading to your world — because we're booklovers, just like you." Shame the world no longer includes SA.

Anyway sorry guys for the vent, but now it's cleared things up kindle or nothing.
1- Sounds like the Kobo contract was allowed to lapse or was actively cancelled.

2- "Kindles sell themselves" says a lot more about consumers than about store staff. Properly trained staff exist to help shoppers find what *they* want/need *not* to promote what they prefer. (That is one of the most common gripes folks have about independent pbook B&M stores: snotty salesfolk sneering at their genre buys, especially romance.) One of the reasons why the US CircuitCity failed (and BestBuy survived) was employees steering consumers to what *they* considered best. (And since they were paid on commision, that meant big "upselling". People who walk in knowing what they want do NOT like being steered to something else.

3- If people walk in looking for Kindles it probably is because Amazon actively promotes their ereaders *themselves* and Kobo relies on local partners to do the promotion. That costs money so either the price goes up or the store profit goes down. Stores love products that "sell themselves".

4- How do the ebookstores compare in catalog sizes? Does SA have a local ebookstore or do Kindle users work off the main AMAZON.COM or UK store. The US store is enormous, loaded with APub and indie books that, unlike most tradpubs, aren't georestricted. That is by now *a lot* of added titles. I don't see a South African Kindle store so odds are local Kindle buyers have a much bigger store to buy from.

South Africa is far from the only place where mainstream shoppers think Kindle is a generic term for ebook readers or the only reader worth buying. It isn't up to retailers to evangelize but rather up to the device builder. There's a reason Amazon puts Kindle front and center to book shoppers.

No fun being on the short end of the stick (been there, done that, got the T-shirt) but retail is about making the most money the fastest. One consequence is that popular products displace the less popular ones.

The remedy for that is online shopping.
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Old 07-30-2020, 08:47 AM   #23
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I've read in the past that the price of books in South Africa is very high. That probably drives demand down across the board (physical, Kindle, Kobo). Blaming that one company is reductive when there are deep underlying systemic issues with the market itself.
Brazil used to be notorious for absurd import taxes on electronics, even products without local competitors. It took Amazon 5 years to get Kindle in-country.

Not all countries are wide open to external products.
(It took over a decade for most of the EU to stop taxing ebooks differently from pbooks.)
Usually it is consumers who are hurt.
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Old 07-30-2020, 11:52 AM   #24
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If Kobo did an agency deal without stipulations about stock levels, promotion etc. more fool them.

But why are you worried? Do you WANT a Kobo?
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Old 07-30-2020, 01:26 PM   #25
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It's always about money. Kindles obviously bring in more cash for somebody than Kobos do. Hence the availability of Kindles and the rarity of Kobos. You can complain until you are blue in the face about this not being fair to Kobo or to customers who want to buy a Kobo. But remember, "It's always about money" ... so don't hold your breath too long.

The superior product will not always win either. Back in the days of VCRs, VHS won out over Betamax. Beta was clearly superior, but VHS out-marketed them (in the consumer market, but not the professional market). Then you have Bluray vs. HD-DVD. There was not clear superior technology there IMHO, however with it being "all about the money", the Bluray group was willing to spend more money to shutdown HD-DVD than the other way around.
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Old 07-30-2020, 01:28 PM   #26
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US can look at paying 1/3 more for a device.

Not sure if kindle store is different from Amazon store, but prices just change to rands they have a location setting for that.
I am 100% sure our ebook market etc is maybe 5% of US market probably even less.


Most sales staff are not really sales people more point and read specs off card guys.


Was ok with getting the Kindle till I found out we have overdrive library's now and kindle will never support it, kobo has a work a round till they change, well don't see that happening anytime soon.
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Old 07-30-2020, 02:26 PM   #27
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It's always about money. Kindles obviously bring in more cash for somebody than Kobos do. Hence the availability of Kindles and the rarity of Kobos. You can complain until you are blue in the face about this not being fair to Kobo or to customers who want to buy a Kobo. But remember, "It's always about money" ... so don't hold your breath too long.

The superior product will not always win either. Back in the days of VCRs, VHS won out over Betamax. Beta was clearly superior, but VHS out-marketed them (in the consumer market, but not the professional market). Then you have Bluray vs. HD-DVD. There was not clear superior technology there IMHO, however with it being "all about the money", the Bluray group was willing to spend more money to shutdown HD-DVD than the other way around.
The porn industry would like to have at least some of the credit in these decisions.
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Old 07-30-2020, 02:38 PM   #28
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I think the thing about VHS and Porn is an urban myth. There are other reasons VHS beat Betamax. It was only slightly better quality, till the "Jet Drive" was developed going to wind was faster. One thing that was in the USA the play time was slightly too short on Betamax, it's linked to frame rate, so tapes of both formats played 6/5ths longer in PAL-50/Secam countries.

HD-DVD vs DVD wasn't a marginal difference like VHS and Betamax.

Sometimes things are just too early and poor, like Video CDs or Laser Disc. Or pointless like SADC or whatever the "better than CD" format is called.
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Old 07-30-2020, 04:02 PM   #29
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Was ok with getting the Kindle till I found out we have overdrive library's now and kindle will never support it, kobo has a work a round till they change, well don't see that happening anytime soon.
Even though I have a Kobo I never use its OverDrive. I use the PC app and download some .ascm file from the library web page, then double click on that which fetches the epub, then open the OverDrive folder and drag the epub into Calibre. Sure, it's more steps but I'm not going to browse the library book catalog on my ereader, I'll use the browser on my PC.
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Old 07-30-2020, 04:18 PM   #30
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HD-DVD vs DVD wasn't a marginal difference like VHS and Betamax.
That's Blu-Ray vs HD-DVD. The better format won the battle. Now the thing to do is stop making DVD. DVD is obsolete.
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