Amazon today held a press conference at a lecture hall at Pace University in New York to unveil a large format Kindle device called the Kindle DX.
Just yesterday, The Wall Street Journal reported that Amazon would use the press conference to unveil a new, large screen version of the Kindle aimed at the textbook and newspaper formats. (The first Kindle is powered by Sprint Nextel as part of a wholesale arrangement.)
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos began today with some numbers on the existing Kindle, saying there are currently 275,000 Kindle books now available. After bemoaning the current state of printing and the amount of paper used to produce periodicals, Bezos unveiled the new $489 device.
The new Kindle has a 9.7-inch display and features a built-in PDF reader. Bezos went on to say that Amazon has reached agreements with three textbook publishers: Pearson, Cengage Learning and Wiley, which represent 60 percent of the higher education market.
Devices will be provided to students at five universities this fall.
Bezos also said three newspapers – The New York Times, Boston Globe and Washington Post – have agreed to offer Kindle DX for a reduced price on long-term commitments to subscriptions.