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Amazon to start charging for Kindle Web access.


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Initial post: Jan 11, 2008 11:20:04 PM PST
hdtravel says:
Be aware that Amazon is going to start charging for using the Web browser on the Kindle. Read the Kindle Terms & Conditions. You will soon pay for any Web access other than buying books. As soon as they have us hooked the charging will begin.

Amazon Kindle: License Agreement and Terms of Use

Wireless Connectivity

General.

Amazon provides wireless connectivity free of charge to you for certain content shopping and acquisition services on your Device. You will be charged a fee for wireless connectivity for your use of other wireless services on your Device, such as Web browsing and downloading of personal files, should you elect to use those services. We will maintain a list of current fees for such services in the Kindle Store. Amazon reserves the right to discontinue wireless connectivity at any time or to otherwise change the terms for wireless connectivity at any time, including, but not limited to, (a) limiting the number and size of data files that may be transferred using wireless connectivity and (b) changing the amount and terms applicable for wireless connectivity charges.

Coverage; Service Interruptions. You acknowledge that if your Device is located in any area without applicable wireless connectivity, you may not be able to use some or all elements of the wireless services.We are not responsible for the unavailability of wireless service or any interruptions of wireless connectivity.

Your Conduct.

You agree you will use the wireless connectivity provided by Amazon only in connection with Services Amazon provides for the Device. You may not use the wireless connectivity for any other purpose.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 11, 2008 11:38:22 PM PST
You wouldn't happen to know S. Saroff, would you? You two are cut from the same cloth.

As my grandmother used to say-- Don't borrow trouble.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 12, 2008 5:25:41 AM PST
T. Schiel says:
The sky is falling, the sky is falling!

Get rid of your Kindle at once.....it is dangerous.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 12, 2008 8:05:44 AM PST
Prosecutrix says:
It strikes me that this is a valid point to raise, but the propaganda style of the original posters message is certainly off-putting.

I have a feeling that this is an "out" for Amazon and Sprint in case people try to turn the device into a wireless modem and/or their primary connection to the internet. Really, it's not out of the question that some 15yo hacker has already connected the Kindle's EVDO modem to his laptop for anonymous hacking. But, the clear language of the Terms does state "will be charged." In a statute, this would likely be seen as a mandate, as opposed to a discretionary action by Amazon. That's somewhat hard to ignore.

Since I don't plan on doing much surfing beyond the occasional Wikipedia search, this wouldn't impact my purchase. But other users should certainly be aware of the possibility of future charges.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 12, 2008 8:11:10 AM PST
hdtravel says:
Does anyone no where this fee list they talk about is in the Kindle store ? I cannot find it ?

Amazon says: We will maintain a list of current fees for such services in the Kindle Store.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 12, 2008 8:19:17 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 12, 2008 8:19:35 AM PST
I think Amazon will probably charge for wireless at some point. I'd also expect that if they do, the price of the Kindle will fall. I think part of the current price included some allowance for the cost of wireless unless Amazon was ready to sell it at a loss in the hope of capturing future sales. Maybe, maybe not.

If there is a fee for wireless, it will probably be easily affordable. How long does it take to connect and download a book? A minute? Unless you're using wireless constantly, it shouldn't be a big issue. And if you are, it's reasonable that you would pay accordingly. Amazon didn't invest this much in the Kindle to lose sales over high wireless fees; of that, I'm sure.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 12, 2008 8:30:54 AM PST
Gary - go take a deep breath. The reason that there's no list of fees is that there are no fees.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 12, 2008 8:41:27 AM PST
hdtravel says:
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In reply to an earlier post on Jan 12, 2008 8:43:56 AM PST
This is just pure speculation. Where does "probably" come from?

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 12, 2008 9:00:11 AM PST
So what if they charge for web access? I bought the Kindle to read books. I have my laptop with its nice color display and backlight for internet browsing. The Kindle was never designed to be an everything device. Bring on the charges, I don't care.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 12, 2008 11:24:53 AM PST
Kindling says:
No fees for now.

IMHO there had not better be fees for some time, and if there are, I'd like a free few years's worth ;) Searching wiki for free is something that seems to have been implied strongly by the advertising. Not sure about anything else though.

I bet there's a real good reason why plugging into the USB port turns off wireless too ;)

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 12, 2008 6:44:58 PM PST
Will there be a charge for using the dictionary?

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 12, 2008 8:12:51 PM PST
BookGorilla says:
It's an interesting and valid question, Gary -- sufficiently interesting that as I write this #818 on the Kindle Books bestseller list is an article entitled "The Amazon Kindle Basic Web Wireless Service: Why It Is a Revolutionary Feature, and Why Amazon Should Keep It Free or Cheap (Kindle Edition)," which is actually a chapter excerpted from my forthcoming book on the Kindle. The real question, I think, is whether it will make sense economically in the classic Amazon "customer experience"-driven business model for Amazon to start charging for the wireless web. In the article I argue that it would make little sense and would involve a serious departure for Amazon to start charging anything more than a nominal charge of, say, $2.99 a month for the wireless connectivity.

Two other points worth mentioning, I think:

1) If it is important to people, I hope they will make a point of communicating to Amazon their hope, or insistence, or whatever they want to communicate, that the service be kept free. If your post or my article help people to frame the dialogue, that's fine.

2) I recommend that people look at the fairly broad and unqualified statement implicit in the 5th paragraph of the letter from Jeff Bezos which is linked in the left sidebar column of the Kindle Store page: "We chose the same wireless technology used in advanced cell phones, so you never need to locate a Wi-Fi hotspot. But unlike cell phones, there are no monthly wireless bills, no service or data plans, and no yearly contracts."

That is Jeff speaking about his vision for the Kindle, and although it would be possible to split hairs and say, well, he wasn't specific about using the wireless for browsing the web, etc., etc., I think that would be missing his point. And call me Pollyanna, but I prefer to believe JeffSpeak than AmazonLawyerSpeak, which I believe is what animates (or fails to animate) the Terms & Conditions.

Speak up, Kindlers! You have nothing to lose but your connectivity!

Windwalker
indieKindle.blogspot.com

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 12, 2008 10:40:44 PM PST
Prosecutrix says:
"I prefer to believe JeffSpeak than AmazonLawyerSpeak, which I believe is what animates (or fails to animate) the Terms & Conditions."

Well, let's not forget that Sprint is involved in this partnership, too. The T&C entry about fees makes it sound like Sprint's deal with Amazon has a term which may cause Amazon to pass some additional costs onto Kindle users. I have a hard time believing that Amazon is interested in getting into the ISP business (although I certainly could be wrong). Sprint, though, is in the ISP business, and their deal with Amazon will dictate the ultimate cost of the connection.

It would be great if the $400 included a guaranteed free lifetime connection to the EVDO network. However, that is only guaranteed for actual Amazon purchases. I have no doubt that the additional charges will kick in when Sprint feels that they are no longer getting the benefit of the bargain. With limited web-browsing utility and no support for video, how much data are these things really going to be moving through the network, anyway?

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 13, 2008 12:15:27 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 13, 2008 10:24:38 AM PST
Here's a view on the subject from a retired senior citizen:

Most seniors aren't able to keep up with technology and thus veer away from computers. Some I know have WebTV but that's about as complex as they're willing to go. We, the senior citizens, should be viewed as fertile ground, a target population that represents a lot of potential money for Amazon's pockets. I'm talking about lots of future Kindle e-book sales here.

. If I was on Amazon's Kindle marketing team I would push to leave free all of Kindle's features that are currently free. Ah, but there is a feature that could be added where a fee could be charged and not be begrudged, that's email. If my parents were still around I would jump at the chance to buy them the gift of an email capable Kindle.

. A good move on the part of the Amazon-Kindle folks would be to convince us seniors that we should have a Kindle. We of course, will mention to our kids how good it would be for us to own one of these beauties - then we'll patiently wait until birthday, father's day, mother's day, or some other holiday to hopefully receive one as a gift :). And Amazon, imagine solving a big problem for all those folks who, every year can't figure out what to give their senior citizen parents for a holiday gift. And even if Kindle email doesn't become reality, at least make it so the old folks can have some interaction with the outside world, in this case, via Kindle's basic internet - and for heaven's sake, don't charge for it.

Actually it all comes down to this: Until now, Kindle has come across as a refreshing deviation from the trend, a change that brought on a brightening smile. Finally, here's a company that sees the wisdom of charging a premium for the tool, a fair price for the product, and including in the package an added feature that's not charged for, a nice but not overly sophisticated entry into the internet. Smart! Although this basic internet feature adds nothing to the near term profit, it increases big-time the probability of many future happy customers that might otherwise not become customers at all.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 13, 2008 3:33:46 AM PST
Personally, if I find something of value to me, I don't have a problem paying for it. The fact that they provide access free now is just icing on the cake. If they start charging for it, I'll determine then whether the service is valuable enough to pay for based on what they end up charging. If it isn't, I won't use the service; if it is, I will. Amazon can then decide how to proceed with their pricing structure based on the increase or decline in the use of that feature.

But here is the rub folks; if you let anyone "hook" you into something, that says something about you, not the person/entity that "hooked" you. Take into account the consequences of your own actions and you will find that no one can "hook" you into anything. The addict blaming the pusher is just failing to take responsibility for their own decisions and actions.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 13, 2008 5:26:07 AM PST
- A says:
How about this? No one worries about it until you get an official letter from Amazon stating that they will begin to charge and what the charges are. What? You're going to drive yourselves crazy over something that doesn't even exist at this time. I swear, anything to ruin a good thing. You are all sick. My Adult response is "WHATEVER!" Oh and by the way, as long as my Kindle is running for free, I do not care. When it stops doing that. I'll contact Amazon. Not this intelligent bunch in the forum speculating on what could have been or might be. Geez, it's a reader...that's it. Nothing more.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 13, 2008 5:45:16 AM PST
To Kimberly Schueller: No, there is no charge for using the dictionary. At least, not the one that comes on the Kindle. If you want to go onto the web and use another one, then there still isn't, but there could be in the future. If you want to go to the Kindle store and buy a dictionary and put it on your Kindle, you can use the dictionary you bought with Kindle's lookup feature.

To Amy E. Santos: That's why I posted not to borrow trouble. However, you are mistaken about the Kindle being nothing more than a reader. It's a portable library and bookstore as well as a reader. That's why it's unique and stands out head and shoulders above all the competition.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 13, 2008 6:39:53 AM PST
D. Loomis says:
THANK YOU AMY E SANTOS--THE VOICE OF REASON IN AN OVERGROWN FOREST OF DOUBTERS!!

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 13, 2008 8:17:01 AM PST
Prosecutrix says:
"Kenneth Cooper says:
Here's a view on the subject from a retired senior citizen:

Many of us living on fixed income are more and more having to reject items that require a monthly fee. Monthly fees hurt; yet increasingly they're becoming an integral part of today's way of doing business. Heck, one of the reasons Kindle stood out with the press is the fact that Kindle doesn't charge monthly fees for its services. Amazon will make a good many of us seniors a little bit angry if they start asking for money each month, even if it is just a nominal amount as you suggest."

I agree with the poster above that this is really a non-issue until it becomes an issue. But I really wanted to respond to Mr. Cooper's post nonetheless. First, everyone with a salary essentially works on a fixed income. I understand that seniors generally have less of an opportunity to supplement or grow that income, but they are hardly unique in not being able to afford everything that they may want to buy. Most people I know are forced to set a budget and live within it.

Second, there is nothing in the terms of service that imply that Amazon is ever going to charge a fee for using the Kindle to do what it is designed to do. It is a book reader. That function is free, after the purchase price. It has wireless access to the bookstore. That service is free, after the purchase price of the Kindle and the book. Per the T&C, that's not going to change. While the Kindle has limited internet functionality, that is an "experimental" and supplementary service. A luxury, in other words. If they start charging for it and you don't want to pay, don't use it for that purpose. Plain and simple. The value of this thread is that you are now making an informed purchase.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 13, 2008 9:51:15 AM PST
California Mom to Be says:

Second, there is nothing in the terms of service that imply that Amazon is ever going to charge a fee for using the Kindle to do what it is designed to do. It is a book reader. That function is free, after the purchase price. It has wireless access to the bookstore. That service is free, after the purchase price of the Kindle and the book. Per the T&C, that's not going to change. While the Kindle has limited internet functionality, that is an "experimental" and supplementary service. A luxury, in other words. If they start charging for it and you don't want to pay, don't use it for that purpose. Plain and simple. The value of this thread is that you are now making an informed purchase.

Mom to Be: You've made a good argument for the Amazon-Kindle folks. And you're right, my message's first paragraph detracts from all else I said. So I'll edit it out. If anyone wants to see it they can read it in your post.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 13, 2008 10:06:41 AM PST
Prosecutrix says:
I was remiss in ignoring your proposal for Kindle email. That truly is a great idea. How often are you reading a book when a passage brings to mind a friend or family member. Being able to flip over to a mail editor and jot a quick note, maybe including a quoted passage, would be wonderful. And you're absolutely right that many people, old and young, are somewhat technophobic (as well as cash-strapped). Adding a well-designed email application would undoubtedly help a good number of people, and could easily increase book sales. After all, you have to think that many of the emails from an eReader will include the line, "you HAVE to read this book!"

Of course, the limitations of the eInk technology may make the application more frustrating than useful. People are already griping about the delay between typing and displaying a letter. And that's just for entering web addresses, search terms, and brief notes. Until the display technology improves, Amazon could be just asking for a slew of new 1 star reviews from buyers (or non-buyers) that are underwhelmed with the Kindle's performance at a task it wasn't really designed for. Never mind that it excels at its designed function!

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 13, 2008 10:14:37 AM PST
OlManRivah says:
This lawyereze stuff is just to cover all bases. Ever read the Lawyereze on your medication bottle? The market place will dictate this. Could be a good deal. Maybe Whispernet could use some competition.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 13, 2008 10:16:34 AM PST
BookGorilla says:
Well, not to put too fine a point on this, but....

How to Use the Amazon Kindle for Email & Other Cool Tricks: Read and Answer Email Anywhere, Anytime on the Amazing Amazon Kindle (Kindle Edition) .... The Complete User's Guide To the Amazing Amazon Kindle (First Generation; DRM-Free)

As the article states, email on the Kindle has some limitations, but they are offset by some remarkable strengths, too.

And then there is the fact that it's a great e-book reader too!

Best,
Windwalker

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 13, 2008 1:52:21 PM PST
[Deleted by Amazon on Dec 29, 2014 2:17:41 PM PST]
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Discussion in:  Kindle forum
Participants:  23
Total posts:  34
Initial post:  Jan 11, 2008
Latest post:  Jan 17, 2008

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Kindle: Amazon's Original Wireless Reading Device (1st generation)
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