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Amazon reacts to the iPad

by Scott Bicheno on 4 February 2010, 09:45

Tags: Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN)

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Arms race

The first apparent effect the launch of Apple's iPad had on Amazon's business was to cause aggro between itself and publisher Macmillan over the pricing of e-books. Amazon wants to have a ceiling price of a tenner on all e-books, but Macmillan wants to switch to the model it has with Apple, where it determines the price and merely uses the retailer as an agent.

Media mogul Rupert Murdoch recently weighed in on the matter, stating in News Corp's recent earnings conference call that he's not a fan of Amazon's pricing model. News Corp owns Harper Collins Publishers and seems to have come to a similar arrangement with Apple.

Today, nytimes.com is crediting an anonymous source with the news that Amazon is buying a touch-screen technology start-up called Touchco. It has invented a technology called interpolating force-sensitive resistance, says the report, which is not only considerably cheaper than the capacitive touch-screens used in the iPad, but can also detect an unlimited number of touch points at once.

The Times didn't get confirmation from either company, but Touchco's website just says "Thank you for your interest in Touchco. As of January 2010, the company is no longer doing business." That doesn't necessarily mean it has been acquired by Amazon, but the giant e-tailer is certainly under pressure to maintain the appeal of Kindle in a year when many rival e-readers and tablets will be launched.

Amazon is also offering free shipping on Kindles over the Valentines day period in the US to encourage people to buy them as gifts.



HEXUS Forums :: 4 Comments

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Exactly what use will unlimited point multitouch be on a dedicated e-reader?
“Media mogul Rupert Murdoch recently weighed in on the matter, stating in News Corp's recent earnings conference call that he's not a fan of Amazon's pricing model.”

Woopty-freekin-do. GTFO murdoch, you greedy SOB
scaryjim
Exactly what use will unlimited point multitouch be on a dedicated e-reader?

I suppose Amazon could employ a larger screen and do away the the keypad segment on future Kindles and have a floating onscreen keyboard.
scaryjim
Exactly what use will unlimited point multitouch be on a dedicated e-reader?
Is unlimited touch point technology significantly more expensive than two point touch point screens?

I doubt it, so they may as well impliment it.

Something I've just thought of: Pinch to zoom, what happens when you use all five fingers with it. So instead of just your thumb and first finger, you use your thumb and all 4 fingers. Do some multi touch screens get confused by this? Would this screen with it's unlimited point potential? If the screen can handle it, then interpreting it is all down to the software.