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Amazon to sell discounted Kindle

For a $25 discount, US customers will be able to buy a Kindle as long as they're prepared to put up with advertising

Amazon is to sell a version of its Wi-Fi only Kindle for $114 in the US - $25 less than the usual asking price - calling it a 'Kindle with Special Offers'.

These special offers come in the form of advertising, with brands such as Buick, Olay, Visa, and Amazon.com presenting 'screensaver' type ads to those who buy the new version of the device.

Customers will be able to pick up discounts from these brands, such as $20 Amazon.com gift cards for $10 and $1 per album in the Amazon MP3 Store.

"We're working hard to make sure that anyone who wants a Kindle can afford one," said Jeff Bezos, Amazon.com Founder and CEO.

"Kindle with Special Offers is the same bestselling Kindle - and it's only $114. Kindle is the best deal in consumer electronics anywhere in the world," he continued.

There will also be a new Kindle app called AdMash where customers can preview ads aimed at the Kindle with Special Offers, voting for their favourites.

Kindle with Special Offers customers will also provide Amazon with feedback about the style of ads they want to see. For example, they'll be asked if they want to see screensavers that include elements such as landscapes and scenery, architecture, travel images, photography, and illustrations, Amazon said.

The Kindle with Special Offers will be available on 3 May and US customers can pre-order one now. Amazon UK has not responded to Macworld's questions about UK availability.

However, it is unlikely that a similar deal will launch in the UK just yet - this would require separate arrangements with advertisers, for a start. Besides, the Kindle took long enough to actually get to the UK in the first place, nearly two years after it launched in the US.

UPDATE: Amazon has contacted Macworld to confirm that the deal is not available in the UK "at this time". However, Amazon did not rule out offering a similar deal in the future.


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