When Amazon announced the exciting Kindle Fire tablet and the new touchscreen Kindle, the company also announced that the ad-supported basic Kindle ereader was dropping down to just $79. The ad-supported Kindle was first launched in April of this year and cost $114, which was seen as extremely cheap for an ereader at the time. When the price dropped to $79, well, we couldn't believe our eyes. However, it seems that selling the device so cheap means Amazon is actually taking a hit when it comes to production costs.
MainStreet reports it has received confirmation from iSupply with regard to the production cost of the Kindle. iSupply said it did a teardown of the new Kindle and found that the total cost of materials used in each device, including the e-ink display screen and printed chip board, is $78.59, while the total cost of putting it together is $5.66. This brings the production cost of each $79 Kindle to $84.25 and would mean Amazon is taking a loss of $5.25 with each unit sold.
Of course, while Amazon is taking a loss of $5 for each Kindle sold, you have to remember that this is the ad-supported model. Amazon can offer it to us for a low price because it's receiving advertising revenue from the companies using the device to promote their products or services. What's more, each person with a Kindle also logs into their Amazon account during device set-up, which means they have a handy direct line to Amazon's book store, where they can spend more money on books.