While the new price is still about $10 more than the prices charged in the US, the Canadian models don’t come with ads. That means that the price in Canada is actually better than the US price.
When Amazon first started selling Kindles in Canada in January 2013, they took the smart step of matching the Canadian price to the US price of the ad-free Kindle models. While this may have made it look like the Canadian prices were higher, this was not in fact true. Amazon was offering their customers the same price as in the US, so what Amazon really did today was to give Canadians a better price than Amazon’s US customers can get.
That’s a pretty big deal, and I wonder what it says about Amazon’s market share in Canada.
Canada is the home ground of Kobo, which has been selling ebooks there since late 2009. While Amazon did take the Kindle Store international in 2009, it wasn’t until December 2012 that Amazon launched a local Kindle Store in Canada.
All in all today’s price cut is probably a sign that Amazon isn’t satisfied with their market share in Canada. Does this mean Kobo still dominates the ebook market?
There’s a good chance that this is the case. According to the latest survey data, Kobo accounts for 46% of the ereaders owned in Canada. Amazon is in a distant second place with a mere 24%, and Sony comes in third. This is a striking change from a year ago when the Sony Reader had a slight lead over Kobo and the Kindle (28%, 27%, 25% respectively). That data only became publicly available last week, so it’s entirely possible read the report and responded with a price cut.
The above conclusion was based on a report originally dated April 2012. I had missed the year when I first read the press release.
The latest info is based on market surveys from June 2012 (released in October 2012) and puts the Kindle (25%) at slightly behind Kobo (27%) in terms of ereaders in use. But this info is 10 months old so it could be completely wrong.