U.S. online retail giant Amazon.com
Inc. on Monday launched two models of its Kindle Paperwhite e-book
reader in Japan.
The entry of Amazon, the U.S. e-book market leader, is expected to shake up the Japanese market, through competition with such domestic rivals as Sony Corp. and Rakuten Inc.
Amazon began shipping the e-book readers to customers who had placed preorders at the company's online shopping site. It will sell them via electronics retail stores and elsewhere from Tuesday.
The model that can be used with wireless local area networks is priced at 7,980 yen, down 500 yen from the initially planned 8,480 yen, after Rakuten cut the price of its Kobo Touch e-book reader to 6,980 yen.
Amazon kept the price of the model that uses mobile phone networks at 12,980 yen.
Amazon Japan K.K., a Tokyo-based subsidiary, said that preorders were so robust it was difficult for shipments to keep up.
On Oct. 25, the company launched its Kindle Store e-book distribution service and made a total of 50,000 titles in Japanese available. It aims to make profits from e-book sales by utilizing its customer base from online shopping.
In the Japanese market, the Toppan Printing Co. group plans to begin sales of its e-book reader at a price of 8,480 yen in December.
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