Monday, June 3, 2013

Will Kobo become the No.1 rival of Amazon Kindle?

Amazon Kindle and Barnes & Noble Nook used to be the biggest leaders in the eBook & eReader market. When Amazon is expanding its eBook business in foreign countries, Barnes & Noble takes an over-conservative strategy with very little investment in non-US regions. Even so, B & N Nook line does not show satisfactory performance in the US market. It is even rumored that Nook line will be purchased by Microsoft. Anyway, Barnes & Noble is not a strong opponent of Amazon any more.

In the meantime, Canadian eReader manufacturer, Kobo, is rapidly growing and zealously expanding into new markets. According to the Q1 financial report, the Kobo's overall revenue has received a continuous increase by roughly 98 percent, in both hardware and digital content. The newly released high-end eReader, Kobo Aura HD, has largely contributed to the growth of Kobo devices, which took up to around one third of the total hardware sales in Q1. What's more, downloads of Kobo for Android app has experienced an unprecedented growth up 378 percent.

At first, readers in countries like Canada and Australia, might be forced to choose Kobo eReaders or eBooks as they couldn't access Amazon Kindle in their countries at that time. When it is possible to choose from the two brands, some people will still select Kobo. A case in point is that Kobo Aura HD shows a higher resolution and better reading experience (such as a special page-turning design on the backside) than the popular Kindle PW (Kobo Aura vs. Kindle Paperwhite). On the other hand, eBooks in non-US Amazon eBook stores are not as rich as that in  

It's no doubt that Amazon will fully enter the Chinese market soon with its Kindle devices after the official release of Amazon eBook store and Chinese Kindle for PC yesterday (2, June). In all eventualities, Kobo will break into new markets including China and India in the next few months. Then Kobo will become the only brand that is capable to compete with Amazon Kindle.