Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Kindle Owner Interview: Kit Redmond

My next Kindle owner interview is with Kit Redmond. Kit is obviously an extremely nice guy since he's willing to share his Kindle with his wife...I wonder how many other Kindle owners are this unselfish! Unfortunately for Kit, his Kindle only lasted two days and he's awaiting a replacement unit. Here's what he had to say:

JW: Given the $400 price point and first generation technology, how hard was the decision to make the commitment and buy your Kindle?

KR: The decision wasn't hard at all. My wife and I considered all the books we take with us on vacation and how much space we would save, plus the convenience. And we had faith in Amazon.

JW: How many books do you typically read in a year? What genre do you tend to focus on?

KR: I read 15 to 20 and my wife reads 40 to 50. I read thrillers, history, current events, poetry.

JW: What has been your impression of the Kindle so far?

KR: Initially, we were very impressed. It didn't take long at all to immerse yourself in the story and the electronic format was not a hindrance. But two days after we got it, the Kindle stop working all together. After calling Customer Service a couple of times we were finally informed that it would be approximately two weeks until we could receive a replacement. We were disappointed that Amazon did not have a contingency to replace faulty Kindles immediately. The Customer service representative told me that they only had a small support staff. Those answers were not acceptable to me for a device that was so new and so expensive.

JW: Have you been using your Kindle for anything other than book reading (e.g., magazine/newspaper subscriptions, blogs, etc.)?

KR: I had just subscribed to Readers Digest, but didn't get the opportunity to read it before the Kindle malfunctioned.

JW: How do you feel about the pricing levels Amazon is featuring since launch for e-books, magazines, etc.?

KR: The pricing sounds quite reasonable.

JW: Do you have any recommendations for Amazon to consider when they look to finalize a feature set for Kindle 2.0?

KR: It's hard to handle the Kindle while reading without accidentally pressing a button that will turn the page. It would be nice if they could engineer the next version to take that into account. The cover they ship the Kindle with is quite useless while reading. It doesn't fit snugly.


Joe Wikert said...

Kit sent me a follow-up about his broken Kindle on 12/17. Here's what he had to say:

"Our replacement Kindle arrived on Friday, Dec 14th. We were both very happy to get it and picked up reading right where we left off. That surprised me because I didn't make any bookmarks, but the new Kindle knew just where I had stopped reading.

I hope that Amazon learns from this experience. If you're going to
offer a hot, new, "everyone's got to have one", item, then there should be a contingency plan for when things go wrong. Bad publicity at this stage of a new products life can turn off a lot of mildly skeptical people. Those who are so negative without any first hand experience are vindicated in their "I told you so" attitude.

As I said earlier, I really like the Kindle. I was just disappointed in Amazon's customer service."