Amazon’s Kindle comes to Canada…finally

The National Post and The Globe and Mail are on board as the e-tailer's digital reading device becomes available to Canadian publishers and consumers.

After a very long wait, the Amazon Kindle is finally making its Canadian debut.

Available from Amazon starting today, the popular handheld digital media reader has been available state-side since 2007. Users can store up to 1,500 books, newspapers and magazines in its 2 GB memory. There are currently over 90 magazines and newspapers available for purchase or subscription on the Kindle Store, and over 300,000 book titles. The Globe and Mail and the National Post are available on the Kindle Store today, and the rest of Canwest’s daily newspapers will soon be available for the device. There are no Canadian magazines yet on the list.

Although the Kindle-ized newspapers do not support advertising – the content is mostly text-based – they do meet ABC circulation-audit standards, counting as paid circulation of electronic/digital editions and adding value to the brand by bringing it to a new audience, Scott Anderson, SVP content, Canwest Publishing, told MiC this morning.

‘It’s too early to predict numbers, but launching [the] National Post and Canwest’s big city dailies on Kindle is part of our larger strategy to ensure that our content available to readers and audiences wherever they want it,’ he said. ‘This extends our reach beyond our delivery areas and to folks travelling and on the go.’

The Kindle’s arrival in Canada comes after a considerable, and very public, delay. In early October, Amazon announced the Kindle would be available in over 100 countries around the world, but left Canada off the list. The delay was widely attributed to squabbles over the wireless carrier that would carry the Kindle’s proprietary Whispernet wireless delivery system in Canada. The international carrier is AT&T Global Network.