Hi. That Angry Guy here. Feeling better, hence more angry.
If you haven't heard about it yet, there is a huge price war going on among companies that sell e-reader devices. It seems that the Apple cart (via the iPad) has upset a bunch of people, mainly those people who thought they had the e-book and e-reader device market cornered.
I knew that the $400 price tags on Kindles wouldn't last long, because even though it put many different technologies together in a synergistic fashion, it was still a device with a singular purpose (as are its immediate competitors like the Nook) - in essence, a digital book.
The iPad, like the Amazon Kindle, didn't introduce any radical new technology; it assembled existing technologies into a neat little package that ends up being greater than the sum of its parts.
Tablet computers, with varying degrees of interaction, had been manufactured by other companies since the early 1990s, so Apple didn't invent the form of a tablet computer.
But Apple did make a computer that utilized a number of robust interdependent technologies, and that computer had the right form and was introduced at the right time to break the collective inertia of the buying public.
And even though the competing devices may someday add other functions besides downloading and displaying e-books, the public perception of them is already set. The perception is that the Kindle, Nook, etc., are one-trick ponies whereas the iPad has no boundaries.
And, fortunately or unfortunately as the case may be, perception is reality.