Amazon.com (AMZN) shares are up $7.28, or 3.2%, at $231.49 this morning as the company kicks off its special media event in New York City to introduce something or other — much better than the market’s fractional increase this morning.
Mind you, we live and work in New York City here at Tech Trader, but we’re not nearly all that enough to merit an invitation to the live event. So, we’re relegated to watching from afar, like you.
The event will most likely feature some slow-motion demonstrations of what was written up by Bloomberg’s Danielle Kucera and Brad Stone this morning, namely that the company’s 7-inch tablet computer is called the “Kindle Fire” and will sell for $199, which turns out to be even cheaper than rumor had had it.
There are several people who did merit attendance at today’s event, and we’ll be following their every word, and picture. They include WSJ’s Digits Blog, Engadget’s Tim Stevens; Gizmodo’s Matt Buchanan and Sam Biddle; The Time’s Bits Blog’s Sam Grobart; and of course Peter Kafka of AllThingsD.
Take it away, guys.
Update: In a surprise to tablet fans awaiting the big moment, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos has unveiled onstage not a tablet but an updated version of the Kindle, one without a keyboard, similar to Barnes & Noble’s (BKS) “Nook” e-reader. The device will cost $99, less than the $139 at which Barnes prices the Nook. A second model will feature free 3G wireless connections, for $149. A new lighter Kindle that has no touch capabilities and plain old buttons on the face of it will go for $79, Bezos announced. Bezos followed the Kindle announcements with discussion of the Fire tablet, which has a 7-inch screen and a dual-core processor. A bookshelf user interface allows one to flip through content on the tablet, which includes not just downloaded books but also all the other content from Amazon, such as movies and music. The device will sell for $199, as expected, and ships on November 15th.
Amazon shares are up $7.65, or 3.4%, at $231.86.