Tuesday, June 12, 2012

The $6,600 Kindle

No, the $6,600 Kindle is not some yet-to-be released super version of Amazon's popular e-reader.   The $6,600 Kindle is actually what the federal government has contracted to pay for 2,500 Kindles in a new no-bid contract worth $16.5 million.  The $6,600 price point is roughly 3500 times the retail price of the Kindle Fire.  The cost premium estimate on what the government is paying is even a bit low because the actual contract calls for an e-reader more along the lines of the low end model which retails for just $79.
Department officials determined that Kindles were the only appropriate device for the contract, which was not opened to competitive bidding, contracting databases show. The Amazon e-Readers were selected because they come with a built-in English dictionary, support foreign languages, translate text to speech, and receive information securely from a content distribution platform managed by the State Department.
A spokesman for Hillary Clinton tried to alleviate fears over government waste by claiming they would not pay one penny over retail.  However, in a past contract they were perfectly willing to pay $163 per Kindle, nearly double the retail cost.

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