Amazon's Bezos unveils Kindle Touch, $99; Kindle, $79

Summary:Amazon on Wednesday unveiled the Kindle Touch, the company's next-generation e-reader that uses an infrared touch display.

NEW YORK -- Amazon on Wednesday drew a line in the sand in the e-reader market by unveiling three new Kindle e-reader models priced to move at $79, $99 and $149.

Chief executive Jeff Bezos took to the stage here at Stage37 in Manhattan to reveal the devices, which he says are smaller and lighter than the current Kindle model.

KINDLE TOUCH + TOUCH 3G

The first: the $99 Kindle Touch, the company's next-generation e-reader that uses an infrared touch display.

"The infrared touch display means there's no extra layer on top of your display," he said.

A new feature of the device is called "X-Ray," which offers contextual information about the content you're reading. It's not unlike Times Topics pages on the New York Times' website, except it's available as you read.

A 3G version (with built-in, free, contract-less Wi-Fi) will also be available for $149. Both can be pre-ordered now for shipment in November.

"This is the top-of-the-line Kindle," Bezos said, holding up the device. "We're going to sell many millions of these."

THE CHEAPEST KINDLE EVER

Taking a page from Apple, which is known for selling its previous generation technology at half the price, Bezos also announced a $79 Kindle that's smaller and lighter (albeit a bit less attractive) than the current one but shares its innards, including wireless connectivity.

It can be both ordered and shipped today.

"We're making premium products and offering them at non-premium prices," Bezos said.

ALSO: The company subsequently introduced a full-color tablet computer, the Kindle Fire, for $199. Read more about it here.

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Topics: Hardware, Amazon

About

Andrew Nusca is a former writer-editor for ZDNet and contributor to CNET. He is also the former editor of SmartPlanet, ZDNet's sister site about innovation. He writes about business, technology and design now but used to cover finance, fashion and culture. He was an intern at Money, Men's Vogue, Popular Mechanics and the New York Daily Ne... Full Bio

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