The thing to remember about Amazon's Kindle DX is that it will set you back nearly $500 just to get your hands on one.
With that said, there is a report this morning on MediaPost that Amazon may be considering advertisements in the e-books you read on the device - at the beginning of the book, at the end of the book, between chapters and even in the margins. No, the company hasn't made any announcements about ad-supported e-books. Instead, a review of patents granted in recent weeks, offers a hint at what the company may be thinking about.
I can't quite put my finger on the reason this bothers me so much. It may be this feeling that I have about books - that they are almost sacred in that they allow readers to escape to another world, uninterrupted by the modern-day distractions. Imagine reading a book about the adventures of world travelers and, as they talk about their plans to backpack through Europe, up pops an ad from Expedia on flight specials to Paris.
The idea, of course, is that ads would allow readers to access e-books at a discounted (or free) rate. The MediaPost blog entry implies that customers who buy a hard copy of the book would receive an ad-supported electronic version. So if I understand this correctly, I pay my money for a hard copy of the book and then I receive an ad-supported e-book version that plays back on a device that I dropped $500 for.
Is it me or does it seem that there's something seriously flawed with that model - at least from the consumer's perspective?
Also see: Amazon Kindle's $489 price tag makes iPod Touch a better buy