Great piece this and one worth reading and pondering for some time. Think how you might respond too:
When unexpected things happen, Amazon, unlike most companies, does not immediately respond with knee-jerk PR damage control. As Bezos said during an interview a while back, the company is willing to be misunderstood and endure temporary PR blowback. The larger gameplan is too important.
Which is why the current furor over the price comparison app, and the related #OccupyAmazon reaction, is unlikely to elicit any dramatic responses from Amazon. Where other companies might respond with overwrought displays of contrition and dramatic conciliatory gestures, Amazon will likely do the minimum necessary, wait out the storm, and move on. Amazon dealing with its market is the corporate equivalent of a patient, low-reactor parent dealing with a child throwing a tantrum.
More than any other corporation of the Internet age, Amazon embodies the emerging culture of business strategy. It is the General Electric of our times, and Bezos is the Jack Welch. When the definitive book on corporate strategy for the early Internet era is written, Amazon will be the main example, not Google, Apple, Microsoft or Facebook. Those are great companies too, but their greatness lies in other departments. As far as corporate strategy goes, they are mediocre players, not grandmasters.
via Why Amazon Is The Best Strategic Player In Tech – Forbes.
This article is an excellent corrective to the Amazon bashing that’s been going around lately:
But Amazon is a quintessential capitalist enterprise, and it cannot be faulted for exploiting the free-market system that, for better or worse, we have embraced. It offers people things they want to buy at prices they want to pay, and in so doing, it puts out of business other enterprises that are not able to match its terms. Other than continuing to make sure that Amazon’s practices fall within the bounds of what regulation we have—particularly antitrust laws—there’s not much to be done. (Although it does seem unnecessary to deliberately increase Amazon’s monopoly, as the Wylie Agency did last week with its controversial introduction of a digital publishing venture that makes classic books by the agency’s venerated stable of writers—including Bellow, Nabokov, and Rushdie—available exclusively through Amazon.) I’m not ashamed to admit that I buy books from Amazon when it’s convenient, as well as from Barnes and Noble, independent bookstores, people on the street, or whoever else happens to have what I’m looking for. And to Jeff Bezos and everyone else who brings books to the world I say: thank you.
via The READ: In Defense Of Amazon | The New Republic.
UPDATED STORY MARK II: KINDLE LAUNCHES WORLDWIDE – 7 October 2009
UPDATED: From Endgadget’s Live blogging:
Seems very smart to me:
9:55 – “We didn’t like this solution either. So instead we chose EV-DO cellular. … as soon as I tell you we’re using EV-DO that should cause a second set of concerns, a whole new thing to worry about. Everybody knows that using these wireless cell networks there’s a data plan, a contract, a monthly bill. But we didn’t like that, either. So we built Amazon Whispernet. It’s built on top of Sprint’s EV-DO network. There’s no data plan, no contract, no bill. We pay for all of that behind the scenes so you can just read. What are you going to read?”
[hat tip to the bookseller]
MOST HYPED BOOK STORY OF ALL TIME (EXCEPTING HARRY POTTER, DAVINCI CODE and a few others)
Amazon’s Jeff Bezos already built a better bookstore. Now he believes he can improve upon one of humankind’s most divine creations: the book itself.
Amazon Sets eBook World Alight with Kindle – Finally, Time For Read/Write Books!
I’m rooting for Jeff and the Kindle. I’m not sure that he’s going to win his bet that people will use a single-purpose device rather than reading on a multi-function device like the iPhone and its successors. But I’m also not sure he needs to. Even if some other device becomes the reader of choice, Amazon will still become one of the leading sources of the books that feed it. All Amazon needs to do here is move the industry forward, and I think that’s already been accomplished.
The Book Depository
Lorcan Dempsey’s Weblog
Yup, you can run, but you sure a hell cannot hide!