Amazon Kindles the Fires of Consumer Desire

Ipsos Research Shows the New Kindle Fire is Not Apple’s iPad, But It’s No Slouch

Monday, November 28, 2011

New York, NY - Recent research from Ipsos OTX MediaCT shows that the tablet market is catching fire and is going to be hot, hot, hot heading into the 2011 holiday season. For Amazon, the launch of their new Kindle Fire means they may have what many consumers are looking for. Even before Amazon’s official announcement of the new Kindle Fire, the tablet market looked in a healthy state. In September, Ipsos’ research showed almost one in five (17%) consumers were considering purchasing a tablet in the run up to the holidays – and 11% of consumers were ‘definitely’ going to purchase one. Good news for Apple’s iPad and great timing for Amazon's newest product.

“The iPad was still way out ahead of the rest when it comes to interest – no surprise there,” says Kevin Thompson, Senior Vice President with Ipsos OTX MediaCT. “But what was more interesting was the presence high up the list of the then-unannounced ‘Amazon Kindle tablet PC’. Back in September when we conducted the research, we didn’t yet know the name of Amazon’s offering, but it was very much in the leading pack of contenders for second place after the iPad. Without a name or a launch, it was already as desired as the Samsung Galaxy despite little public detail available on the device.”

Apple’s iPad remains the top-of-mind brand in the tablet segment. In the September study, over half (56%) of respondents interested in owning a tablet specifically expressed interest in the iPad. And of those saying they were likely to purchase a tablet, over two thirds (68%) said the iPad was on their shortlist. But fueled only by speculation and anticipation, Amazon’s then unnamed Kindle Fire had already caused a sensation. The study showed that nearly a quarter (23%) of respondents expressing an interest in owning a tablet were interested in Amazon’s offering and a third (33%) of those likely to purchase a tablet had put it on their short list of options. Early sales of the Amazon Kindle Fire back up these findings.

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While the Kindle Fire does look like a serious contender for second place in the tablet market, reviews so far are mixed1 . A common comment is that it is ‘not an iPad’ , that ‘consumers expecting a true tablet may be disappointed’, or the Kindle Fire is ‘primarily a media consumption device’.

This raises an interesting question: Just what is a tablet?

Ipsos’ research shows that tablet owners spend their time surfing the internet, social networking, reading online content, playing casual games, emailing, listening to music, streaming video, watching movies and so on. If the tablet is defined by how people use it, then the Kindle Fire is in a strong position.

As Kevin Thompson says: “It is true, the Kindle Fire isn’t an iPad – and much of the current tablet market is an iPad market. For consumers, however, the tablet is primarily a media consumption device. For many people the Kindle Fire looks to deliver the vast majority of what they actually want to do with a tablet. It’s not hard to see it being the biggest competitor the iPad has had to face so far.”

The above is based on findings from Will We Keep Taking The Tablets?, a recent paper published by Ipsos OTX MediaCT. A full copy can be found at

The paper contains selected results from LMX, the biannual cross-media study run by Ipsos OTX MediaCT. This syndicated study is used by many media owners and technology companies to understand current behavior and get insight into what the future may hold. Each wave of LMX speaks to 7,500 ‘digitally forward’ consumers, those with more internet and media interests than the ‘average’ consumer.

The paper also contains results from a set of omnibus questions asked in February 2011 and again in September 2011. In each case the questions were asked of a representative sample of 1000 U.S. online consumers aged 18+.

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For more information on this news release please contact:
Kevin Thompson
Senior Vice President
Ipsos OTX MediaCT
(646) 313-7695

About Ipsos OTX MediaCT

Ipsos OTX MediaCT is the market research specialization within Ipsos built to reach, engage and more effectively understand today’s digitally-driven consumer in the fast moving media, content and technology space. By integrating new technologies and immersive techniques with extensive traditional research experience, Ipsos OTX MediaCT’s market leading research solutions help clients better understand media and technology consumption, evaluate content, monitor the value of brands and provide guidance for successful innovation. The Ipsos OTX MediaCT approach results in deeper and more profound consumer insights that allow companies to maximize their return on investment.

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About Ipsos

Ipsos is a leading global survey-based market research company, owned and managed by research professionals. Ipsos helps interpret, simulate, and anticipate the needs and responses of consumers, customers, and citizens around the world.

Member companies assess market potential and interpret market trends. They develop and build brands. They help clients build long-term relationships with their customers. They test advertising and study audience responses to various media. They measure public opinion around the globe.

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Amazon Kindles the Fires of Consumer Desire

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Kevin J. Thompson
Senior Vice President
Ipsos MediaCT