Sony Quietly Trims Its E-Reader Prices As Market Heats Up

Last week, Amazon trimmed the price and improved the features of its flagship Kindle DX product and now it's apparently Sony's turn. As of today, the Reader Pocket Edition is $149 (down from $169), the Touch Edition is $169 (down from $199) and the Sony Daily Edition (the DX's primary competitor) is now $299, down from $349. That's quite a bit cheaper than even the Kindle DX's new pricetag of $379, and it tells us everything we need to know about Sony's position in the e-reader market:  It's losing.


Look! It's the E-reader from that...from that other company!

The price cuts on the Pocket Edition and the Touch Edition should keep them competitive against hardware from Barnes and Nobles' Nook (or the Kindle 2), but the fact that Sony is giving ground at the highest end of the market says nothing good about the company's mindshare in the E-Reader market. Products at the high end of any market aren't just there for sale; they serve as ambassadors and symbols of brand strength. When leveraged successfully, the result is a brand like Sony's Triniton technology. Customers come to associate the name with higher quality or a better experience. They're also willing to pay more money for the product, which translates into higher margins for the manufacturer. The last thing you want to do in any field is be forced to compete on price. It works, to some extent, but it's unsustainable in the long run. Either a company runs out of costs to reduce, or it inevitably begins sacrificing quality in the name of keeping a razor-thin margin high enough to stay in business.

The reason Sony isn't talking much about these price changes is because the company doesn't want to admit it's being shoved out of yet another market. It's not clear how Sony ranks compared to Barnes and Noble or some of the other players in the market, but it's safe to bet there's just one company Sony is seriously trying outmaneuver. Amazon, meanwhile, may be facing real competitive pressure for the first time thanks to Apple's iPad, but it'll be a few quarters before we've got evidence on how much the two companies are competiting with each other. There's room, theoretically, for multiple E-book readers at the top of the market, but Sony has yet to demonstrate how it intends to get there. 
Via:  PC Magazine
Comments
fat78 4 years ago

Amazon's and barns and noble ereader also droped in price. I just picked up one of barns and nobles nook because the price drop and it is very nice, many books you can buy and also many free ones you can get

twistedfate 4 years ago

what would i use this for if i dont read

Joel H 4 years ago

TwistedFate:

I suppose you might use it to practice your grammar and typing skills.

acarzt 4 years ago

Also.. lol @ Joel and eek @ twisteds lack of punctuation usage lol

animatortom 4 years ago

Good to see things starting to get within the 1Bill range!

I think we would see more people using E-Readers if they were more accessible at a more reasonable price.

twistedfate 4 years ago

what why would i do that?

acarzt 4 years ago

I've never really been interested in Sony's e-readers. Probably because they don't have a huge book store... like Barnes and Noble... backing them. The Nook is pretty awesome. I don't have any problems with it. I enjoy playing Sudoku on it as well lol

My gf does MOST of her reading on it now too. She still gets some books in paper that she can't find on it, and she still get's a lot of magazines lol

ClemSnide 4 years ago

I'm still using Stanza on the iPod Touch, and loving it. I went through Pride And Prejudice, and am now finishing a novel I started to read as my vision started really deteriorating: Last of the Mohicans. Man, what a book! Anyone who gets a kick out of Dumas will love Cooper's sense of action.

It's kind of sad that low-vision users were largely ignored by the hardware e-reader designs. There was actually nothing standing in the way of displaying thicker-stroke fonts or larger typefaces-- nothing but some guy in marketing that thought numbers would confuse their customers, whom I believe is the same guy who designed the type size menu in Internet Explorer. Amazon's infamous crippling of their text-to-speech capability didn't help. (And for those who think I'm a kneejerk Apple supporter, I'll say that the iBooks app is as disappointing as the B&N or Kindle apps. They should've just thrown huge amounts of money at Lexcycle and rebranded their product.)

So far Project Gutenberg and FeedBooks give me what I need, for free; but should I desire a more modern novel, you betcha I'm going to go through Stanza's store. It's more than proven itself. And if I get an iPad in the future, much of the reason will be that single app.

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