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e-Reader Sales Strong For Holidays

11/30/2009 03:31:46 PM Eastern

Seattle
- Amazon.com said it sold more Kindle e-readers this November than in any prior
month, even before Cyber Monday today.

Barnes & Noble and Sony reported they are having difficulty
meeting pre-order demand for their first e-readers, which compete with the
Kindle by offering 3G wireless book downloads.

Barnes & Noble said it will delay the in-store launch of its Nook
e-reader
by one week.  The launch
through Barnes & Noble stores was originally planned for Nov. 30.  The bookseller has been accepting Nook
pre-orders online, but these have also sold out for Christmas and new orders will
not be delivered until January, it said 10 days ago.

A Barnes & Noble spokesman said, "Demo devices are scheduled
to be available in our highest volume stores the week of Dec. 7. Those highest-volume
stores are also expected to receive very limited inventory at a date yet to be
determined."

Sony, while hoping to ship pre-orders of its new wireless
Daily Edition
in time for Christmas, stated on its Web site it cannot
guarantee delivery before January.

Sales of e-books are expected to increase from approximately 1
million in the U.S.
last year to as much as 4 million this year, according to analysts.

Over the past two years, Amazon sold out of Kindles prior to
Christmas, so consumers turned to eBay to purchase the product, driving up
prices for the e-reader to record highs reportedly above $700.  A current 6-inch Kindle sells for $259, and
the Kindle DX with 9.7-inch screen sells at $489.

Sony said pre-order demand for its $399 Daily Edition announced
in August is "extremely high."

Sony's non-3G wireless Pocket and Touch edition e-readers are sold
through 10,000 store outlets, and Sony claimed its Touch model "is flying off
shelves." The spokesman added, "It's going to be a great holiday season for the
Reader."