2010 Kindle sales will reach 8 million: analyst

Did you buy a Kindle for someone this holiday season? Chances are many more of you will answer “yes” to this question than if we had posed it last year. A whole bunch probably also bought one for themselves this year, as Amazon says 2010 will see the highest Kindle sales yet, by far.

Ever since it first launched the Kindle some three years ago, Amazon has become legendary for its refusal to publish sales numbers of the device, but like any good American company, it still likes to brag. It’s officially said “millions of our all-new Kindles” were sold in the months following the product’s launch.

And since Amazon won’t give us the juicy numbers we want, it’s up to the analysts to tell us. A Bloomberg report suggests sales may be as high as eight million, which would be more than it has ever sold in a single year before, by far. At least, we’d think. Again, Amazon won’t tell us. But 8 million is far higher than any third-party reports ever suggested for the last three years.

This year saw an enormous war in the e-reader market, pushing up the feature list and pushing down the price tag. It was a year for consumers as Barnes & Noble, Border, and Apple all put pressure on Amazon to create a better and more affordable product. The Kindle’s margin went from nearly 100% to almost one-tenth of that as the cheapest Kindle is now just around $130.

The price drop is of course the biggest reason for the uptick in sales, but this year also saw e-reading apps hit other platforms. Kindle books are now available on Android, iPhone, Blackberry, and computers. But people are still buying the actual Kindle device. That’s great news for Amazon.

Amazon has constantly said the Kindle is its top-selling and most-wished-for product of the entire year. An exact number to match those words is still unknown. Some other analysts suggest the 2010 sales figure might be much lower. No one knows for sure, but everyone knows that it was definitely a banner year for the Kindle, and for e-readers in general. [[Kindle]]