Waterstones reckon the Kindle is dead

8 January 2015

kindle It sounds like book shops have seen off the Kindle, if Waterstones' claim that sales of the eBook gadget have disappeared now that there is a vogue for real proper actual books again.

Waterstones teamed up with Amazon to sell the Kindle in its stores, have seen sales of physical books go up by 5% in December, with the Kindle barely making a mark.

Kindle sales had “disappeared to all intents and purposes”, Waterstones said.

Waterstones' chief executive James Daunt spoke words to the Financial Times, claiming that the resurgence of proper books was due to the chain refurbishing some of its 290 stores.

Yes, that is clearly it. Nicer shops.

WE reckon it could also suggest that as with every gadget since time began, that anybody who wanted to buy a Kindle, probably now has a Kindle, and maybe isn't in a hurry for another.

Head office also handed more control over what stores sold to the managers running them, so they could cater their stock to local tastes. “We used to try and run exactly the same bookshop in Blackpool as in Hampstead. That, my youngest daughter would tell you, is probably not sensible,” Mr Daunt said.

Of course, Waterstones have only accounted for their own sales and most people buy Kindles directly from Amazon, rather than going to a book shop to buy them where they're marked-up. And Waterstones shouldn't get too blasé about the comeback of 'real' books, because their forecast for the year involves them hoping to break even.

TOPICS:   High Street News   Gadgets


  • Alan G.
    Not to mention that (for example) the Dundee branch no longer sells Kindles. If you can't buy them, sales are bound to have declined.
  • narfette
    But a consumer will buy a kindle once. Whereas books are bought many times over. And as a kindle owner i still buy books, so i would expect this unbalance.
  • Mad B.
    I blame the education system, no one under 30 years of age can cope with text longer than a tweet or SMS message. #edyoukayshun

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