Amazon might not have sold as many Kindles and Kindle Fires as they wanted this past holiday season, but that apparently is not enough to discourage their hardware efforts.
EETimes is reporting that Amazon has some 255 job listings posted to the Lab126 website. The available positions are spread out all over the world, though most are located in Lab126's main offices in Cupertino, Calif. Those openings cover a wide variety of positions, including everything from secretaries to a wide variety of hardware and software engineers.
Amazon is looking to hire a camera test engineer in Shenzhen, and the job listings for Seattle include a software engineer and a couple logistics managers. There's a single job listing for Singapore, and it's a rather odd one. Amazon needs an engineer to work with display makers. The odd part about this listing is that nearly all screens come from China or Taiwan, so I would think that Amazon would base that position out of Shenzhen.The positions for Hyderabad are largely concentrated in software engineers and managers, and there is even one position in Meguro, Japan for a data center engineer.
Lab126, as you might know, is the Amazon subsidiary which has been responsible for developing the Kindle hardware, software, and apps. Amazon launched Lab126 in 2004 as part of their first step into ebooks. This was before Amazon bought Mobipocket, and that should tell you how long ago it was.
I seem to recall that in the early years Amazon was hiring Lab126 staff just for the Cupertino offices, so this new worldwide operation is a marked changed. It's different enough that EETimes is speculating that perhaps Amazon might be planning to spinoff Lab126.
Filling out the rest of the usual corporate functions, Amazon is seeking a handful of corporate attorneys, IT staff, technical writers to work on documentation for the Kindle SDK, business and financial analysts, industrial designers, a statistician and even a reliability scientist. They are even hiring several recruiters.
Maybe these guys really are forming their own company!
I think he could be correct, and it's the corporate that convinced me. In any case, Amazon is usually too secretive to tell anyone what is going on, so the first sign of a spinoff could be SEC paperwork of some kind.
Of course, if anyone at Amazon wants to secretly pass some info, I will keep it a secret.