I have few regrets about my involvement with the Kindle these past five years, but one of them is triggered by today’s anniversary. It was five years ago today, on November 19, 2007, that the original Kindle sold out in the first five and a half hours of availability. I wish I’d been one of those lucky buyers, but I waited about a month before ordering my first Kindle. I had been burned nearly a decade earlier by my enthusiasm for NuvoMedia’s Rocket eBook, which I was sure was going to revolutionize reading. It didn’t. So I waited.
A lot of would-be Kindle customers waited, too, because the original Kindle, priced at $399, was out of stock for five months, until late April of 2008. That caused a frenzy on eBay, where Kindles were selling for as much as $1,500 according to a blog post by Andrei Pushkin that I found dated December 19, 2007. “Don’t you wish you had ordered a couple of Kindles on launch day?” Andrei asked. “You could have sold one of them on eBay which would have easily paid for the other one. With the remaining cash you could have downloaded a couple of titles from the Amazon store as well.”
Do you remember where YOU were when you first heard about the Kindle?