MarketWatch First Take
Amazon, show investors the Kindle numbers8/30/12 12:06 PM ET (MarketWatch)
SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) --
Amazon (AMZN) said it has sold "millions" of the Kindle Fire since it was launched nine months ago. Its $199 price point resonated with consumers who were interested in trying out a tablet but did not want to spend $499 for
Still, investors need more specifics on unit numbers rather than a vague "millions." Amazon did say that in the last nine months it has captured 22% of the U.S. market.
On a global basis, the numbers shift slightly because Amazon does not ship its Kindle Fire outside the U.S. Market research firm IDC reported earlier this month that Amazon has a 5% share of the global tablet market, with Apple still the leader at 68.2%, and Samsung No. 2 worldwide in tablets, with a 9.2% of the global market.
IDC said Amazon shipped 1.2 million Kindle devices in the calendar second quarter, while Apple sold 17 million iPads. Apple, as investors know, breaks out unit shipments of its products, which helps in the compilation of financial models. This can backfire when Apple misses on something like iPhone unit sales, which it did in the most recent quarter, with consumers awaiting the iPhone 5. Read more about Apple's latest results.
Amazon may be trying to avoid getting into the expectations game that unit-shipment numbers would invite. But if it really wants to compete with Apple, Amazon should cough up details on its tablet sales.