Daily-deal offers are all the rage now, what with sites like Groupon, LivingSocial, and, one of my personal favorites, Giveaway of the Day. Amazon is no stranger to this concept, having offered its daily “Gold Box” bargains for some time.
Now, the company is extending this daily-deal love to Kindle owners: the Kindle Daily Deal offers one e-book per day at a heavily discounted price. Today (and only today), for example, you can get Sara Gruen’s “Water for Elephants” for just $2.99–the lowest price anywhere, by far. (Quick review: great read. Relentlessly entertaining. Even if you’re not a fan of elephants or water, I think you’ll enjoy it.) Once the clock strikes midnight (Pacific Time), the price goes back to normal–and another discounted e-book takes its place.
As a die-hard e-book fan, that gives me a lot of incentive to visit Amazon every day. Of course, that’s assuming I can remember. An easier way to track the Kindle Daily Deal is to follow it on Facebook or Twitter.
These dirt-cheap books can be viewed on a Kindle e-reader or any device that can run a Kindle app: Android phones and tablets; iPhones, iPods, and iPads; laptops and Web browsers; and so on.
Now, if you’re a Nook owner, you’re probably feeling a little left out. A quick check reveals that Barnes & Noble is still selling “Water for Elephants” for $6.99. Hopefully, the bookseller will decide to follow Amazon’s lead with its own e-book deal of the day. In the meantime, Nook Color owners do have an option: the Nook2Android card I wrote about a few weeks back.
By transforming your Nook Color into a full-blown Android tablet, the card allows you to run the Kindle app—and, consequently, take advantage of these and other Kindle deals. (Speaking of which, check out this post on three ways to score cheap/free e-books.)
I’ve long been of the mind that e-books are overpriced. I mean, I don’t mind paying close-to-print-edition prices for new and/or bestselling releases, though even then I think publishers would be smart to offer bigger discounts. But what about older and out-of-print titles? It’s time to start selling those for a buck or two. The first publisher that figures this out stands to make a fortune. Short-term, I think Amazon will enjoy through-the-roof sales of these daily deals.
What are your thoughts on the Kindle Daily Deal? Think you’ll take advantage of it? And what about e-book prices in general? Are they too steep for your liking? Let’s hear from you in the comments!
Meanwhile, here’s a related bonus: Each day from now until the end of August, you can get a selected audiobook from Audible.com for just $7.95. Most of the titles normally sell for two, three, even four times the price. Definitely worth checking out.
Self-proclaimed cheapskate Rick Broida has been a technology writer for over 20 years. He has authored over a dozen books, including, most recently, “How to Do Everything: Palm Pre.” Currently he writes the Cheapskate blog.