Kindle 3 is Amazon’s bestselling product in history


Image: Wikimedia Commons

Welcome to the Slowest News Week of the Year, when companies fire off self-congratulatory press releases about their accomplishments and hope journalists desperate for news scraps will bite.

Today’s contestant: Amazon, which blasted out a release letting the world know that the newest Kindle has vanquished the final Harry Potter book to claim the title of Bestselling Product in Amazon History. 

This would be more dazzling if Amazon would tell us how many actual Kindle units it has sold, something it has consistently refused to do. I rang the press hotline and asked; will update if Amazon coughs up the numbers. (Edited to add: And here’s their reply. “Thanks for your interest in Kindle.  For competitive reasons we don’t disclose unit sales figures.”)

Meanwhile, I hit the archives to see if Amazon ever gave out any numbers about sales of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, which was released in July 2007. Result: Nope. But it did, in December 2007, say that it had sold “more than 12 million copies of the seven Harry Potter titles.” So, Kindle 3 sales: Probably more than 1 million and way less than 12 million. 

Some other fun tidbits from Amazon’s press release: On its peak shipping day this year it sent out 9 million items, and on its peak sales day — Cyber Monday — customers ordered 158 items per second.

And the company’s most remote holiday shipment went to Grise Fiord, north of the Arctic Circle in Canada: Population 141, average yearly temperature 2 degrees Fahrenheit. That’s its airport, pictured above. Amazon shipped to that airport Halo Reach, Call of Duty: Black Ops, Chicken Soup for the Dog Lover’s Soul and, my personal favorite, Tinker Bell and the Great Fairy Rescue. -Stacy

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