For Amazon, this development must be bittersweet. Aside from the obvious fact that Kindles are racking up sales, Amazon’s inability to keep them stocked suggests consumers are embracing the platform, spelling future profits in the form of e-book sales. But it also raises a key question: How can a company so famous for its smooth supply chain management keep running out of its premiere product?
The Kindle sold out earlier this month but was shipping again within a week. Four to six weeks is a long time to ask consumers to remain excited about a e-reader, especially since competitors are rushing their own products to market early next year. It will be interesting to see if the Kindle can recapture its momentum when inventories are restored.