Another electronics chain decides to shut down some stores to save costs
Staples recently announced that it's going to close down 225 of its retail stores across the United States by the end of next year. The closures are intended to cust costs as Staples attempts to give itself a makeover. It's also in response to a growing number of products being sold on the company's website -- Staples ended 2013 with over 500,000 products on Staples.com versus 100,000 at the beginning of the year.
Stop! Before reading any further, grab yourself a pair of fuzzy mittens or a helmet with a faceguard. The reason? A Canadian audit of systems resold by Staples and performed by the office of Privacy Commissioner Jennifer Stoddart reveals that there's plenty of facepalming to go around. First there's the finding that Staples allegedly ran afoul of Canadian privacy law by not fully wiping customer data from notebooks and storage devices before reselling them. A facepalm is also in order for customers who returned said items without first wiping the data themselves.
While the Apple faithful made sure Apple's iPad 2 launch was a success, you sat at home thinking, "Big whoop, it's an iOS device. I'm holding out for the Wi-Fi Xoom!" That's not a bad plan, assuming you're willing to pony up $600 for a superior spec'd Android tablet, and while it was initially looking like you'd have to wait until April, new information suggests you might be able to snag one by the end of March.
Amazon keeps the exact number of Kindle’s sold under wraps, but since we know it been the bestselling item on the website for two years running, it’s not hard to imagine that it leads the pack in the e-reader market. The Nook was slowly nibbling away at its market share prior to the price cut, but the only real advantage competitors had left was a presence at brick and mortar stores, something Amazon is finally going to change.
Best Buy & Staples will be getting all three Kindle variants heading into the fall giving consumers a chance to test Amazon’s best against the Nook, Sony Reader, and several other lower end e-book devices. This isn’t the first time the Kindle has hit retail stores, but it is a first for this generation of device. Placing the Kindle in the retail channel is understandably a difficult decision for a company that has built its entire business model around selling via the web, but one that ultimately can only help move more devices.
The decision is likely a result of the Kindle team being divided into two parts, one devoted to selling books and the other to selling hardware. Each team can make decisions to further each section of the business without worrying about the impact on the other end. Giving consumers a chance to check out the Kindle in person is a wise decision, and one that will likely pay off well going into the holiday season.
No official date has been given for stock to arrive at either Best Buy or Staples, but we imagine this is a result of the current backorder situation on the website.