Cheaper Kindles on the way - but only if you want adverts
There's a new Amazon promotion in the US - the "Kindle with Special Offers". It's a little like "friends with benefits", but with fewer special trouser kisses and less increasingly awkward small talk to compensate for the fact that you're still horsing the living daylights out of your mate on the sly and they're beginning to develop 'feelings'.
A little like that, anyway.
The full title of the offer is the unwieldy "Kindle with Special Offers & Sponsored Screensavers" - Amazon is offering is a cut-price Kindle WiFi in return for sponsored screensavers and a stream of Amazon-related offers such as cut-price bestsellers, albums and vouchers when you take out an Amazon-branded credit card. Yes, it's all an insidious but transparent ploy for Amazon to hook you in and sell more of their products - but then there's a cut price Kindle in it for you.
Amazon are keen to stress that they'll only bombard you with relevant ads; customers will be presented with pairs of sponsored screensavers and asked to select which one they prefer. There's no doubt some clever algorithm involved to ensure the whole process learns your tastes (if it doesn't know from your account already) so Amazon can scare more money out of you.
How much cheaper are the Kindles? The scheme is initially launching in the US, with a Kindle WiFi costing $114 (£70) instead of $139 (£85). Since a Kindle WiFi costs £111 on Amazon UK, it's likely that a similar scheme in this country would reduce the Kindle to a price point below £100, but only just.