Bezos, Are You Listening?

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Massive missed opportunity by amazon…

So, I’m sitting at lunch with a good friend, talking about how I got an amazon kindle for father’s day. And, she whips out hers as well. And, I tell her how much I love it, except for one thing.

My amazon Wish List, where I keep a running list of all the books I want to remember to buy, doesn’t sync up to my kindle, so I can’t just check it, then buy a book from my list. “Am I just a spaz who can’t figure it out,” I ask. “Nope,” she replies, “I can’t either, guess that feature doesn’t exist.”

And, here’s where amazon could and should be making a boatload more money on kindle books.

What if kindle not only made your wish list available, so you could see the books you’re jonesing for and buy them, but went one step further and took a lesson from Netflix?

Here’s how the amazon/Netflix strategy would work…

The kindle tracks where you are in the books you’ve downloaded and are reading and passes that info to the servers at amazon. So, it knows when you finish a book. What if you could stack up the books you want on your amazon wish list, then check a box that made your wish list the amazon kindle equivalent of your Netflix movie cue.

Then, every time you finished a book, the next book in your wish list cue would be automatically downloaded to your kindle. This would allow amazon to benefit from the most powerful element of the Netflix system—eliminating the need to repeatedly make a conscious decision to buy—and let you have a seamless flow of the book you want to buy without having to remember to go get ’em.

So, Bezos, are ya listening? Call me, we’ll do lunch…

I’m wondering now, what other businesses could benefit from adopting innovative processes rolled out in “complimentary” businesses?

Hmmm…

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4 responses

4 responses to “Bezos, Are You Listening?”

  1. Bupbabe says:

    Very smart idea. One small grammatical note: ‘queue’ instead of ‘cue’

  2. Ceres says:

    While I agree w/ you that it’s a big miss, the big difference between Netflix’s way and Amazon’s way is the pricing model. What you suggested works well with the subscription model that is Netflix. It will not work as well w/ Amazon because each e-book downloaded will incur additional cost.

  3. Dave Aron says:

    Great column, and very clever, with the fear that my virtual mother is looking over my shoulder asking me if I’ve finished my reading for my book report yet.

    “What page are you on today, dear? How much more do you have yet to read?”

    While we’re on the subject, how far are we from reversing your idea, and having Netflix borrow from Amazon, with their own version of the Kindle, upon which you can quickly, wirelessly, and remotely download movies and TV shows for viewing on a device specifically made for this purpose?

  4. I had the same thoughts as commenter 2, when initially reading this, that the difference is that Amazon charges for each book. But then I thought, what if they didn’t? What if they had subscriptions? Maybe not the same as the “unlimited” model of Netflix. But they could have a $16.95/month thing and you get to download four books. It’s a stiff discount for Amazon, but you would get the residual revenues. I think Kindle books are too pricey anyways. For some of the books I buy, the softcover is only a dollar more. There is no way a Kindle book should be costing $9.99.

    BTW, I told my wife that I either wanted a Kindle or an IPOD touch for Father’s Day (our first with the birth of our triplets six weeks ago). She got me the IPOD touch and I am so happy she did. You can read your Kindle books on it, as well as use the IPOD Touch for all your music, videos, web surfing, games, even mobile Twitter and Facebook.