Inc.com predicts a worse fate for the Kindle. "Kindle has defied gravity, so far. It sold like hotcakes over the holidays of 2010, despite the iPad, despite the many eReader competitors now available, and despite the lower-priced eReader competitors. In 2011, the Kindle will exhaust its nine lives. It won't die, but sales will fritter. In the end, Kindle will exist largely as an app for other devices. The hardware will be headed for the Smithsonian by 2012," wrote Renee Oricchio, in "Tech Predictions for 2011," on Inc.com's Tech Blog on Dec. 30.
If predictions of a color Kindle come true, will this be a game-changer? I don't claim to know. I still see a market for e-readers among consumers with a voracious appetite for reading books. But even my 14-year-old niece, who reads more books than most adults I know, wanted to exchange the Nook that she got for Christmas for a Droid smartphone. (She'll stick with print books and use the Droid as a phone, for texting, to access e-mail and the Internet, etc.)
At this point, technology is changing so rapidly that it's difficult to predict anything further ahead than tomorrow, but I'm just not as certain as Michael Hyatt that the Kindle will continue to "thrive" in a future with so many multifunction, portable devices … and, let's not forget, the printed book.