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Can Amazon’s Kindle Fire turn the heat on Apple’s iPad?
The iPad has spawned an array of wannabes and clones but Amazon’s Kindle Fire tablet is being hailed as a truly disruptive product that could shake Apple’s hold on the tablet market.
Issue Date - 10/11/2011
A100 years from now, when a Pulitzer prize winning author of that generation pens down a book on the consumerisation of IT, he’ll probably pick up year 2011 as the starting point. In more ways than one, 2011 will be remembered as the year that kick-started a train of events, which transformed the technology landscape once and for all. First it was Hewlett Packard (the world’s largest IT corporation) announcing its exit from the PC business. Then Steve Jobs, the world’s most definitive authority on technology passed away. In between the Jeff Bezos led jumped on to the IT (hardware) bandwagon — a domain that had hitherto been left largely untested by the online mega-store.

And on the topic of Amazon’s IT ambition, despite its sensational and bold gambit in the arena of consumer technology, it calls for an audacious leap of faith to even imagine that there can even be a formidable competitor to Apple. Legions of techno geeks will avow that there is none to match Apple when it comes to integrating hardware and software so brilliantly. All the same, none can fail to observe how a single product — the Kindle Fire — launched by Amazon recently, gives this company the potential to achieve a feat that in every way matches Apple’s technology and design prowess.

But before dwelling on how the launch of Kindle Fire can help Amazon grab an enviable standing in the IT industry, it would be pertinent to go over how the company has been faring under founder and CEO Jeff Bezos over the past few years.

In 2006, Amazon’s revenues stood at $10.71 billion. By 2010, it had increased to $34.2 billion. It took Walmart, a company with comparable revenues, 33 years to accomplish what Amazon achieved in four years. Since 1998, Amazon’s m-cap has almost increased by 100% from $1.64 billion to $106.04 billion. In fact, m-cap has doubled in the past year alone (it hovered around $58.11 billion during Q1 2010).


Amir Moin           

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