kindleflurryAmazon has typically seen its Kindle Fire tablet sales spike during the holidays, even more than a typical seasonal increase, and 2013 appears to be no different.

KindleFireHDX89HorizontalMobile app analytics firm Flurry just released some holiday tablet sales numbers and noted that on Christmas, Amazon’s tablets were activated 24 times more often than on a normal December day — a much higher increase in product activations than experienced by competing tablets from Apple, Samsung or Acer.

In other words, Amazon’s tablet continues to be extremely popular as a gift, thanks largely to its low price. Amazon sells its tablets at break-even pricing, aiming to make money on content sales and e-commerce purchases when people use the tablets.

The challenge for Amazon is maintaining strong sales throughout the rest of the year. The Kindle Fire has been called the “fruitcake of tablets” — a device that people buy as a gift but don’t necessarily buy for themselves. The Kindle Fire typically drops out of the top 5 in worldwide tablet market share outside of the holiday season.

That could be changing. Amazon’s “Christmas activation bump” was actually less pronounced this Christmas than in years past, when it was as high as 41 percent, according to the Flurry data.

In a review of the Kindle Fire HDX, my colleague Todd Bishop wrote earlier this month that it would be a shame for tablet buyers not to consider the Amazon tablets for themselves (not just as gifts for others) thanks to the strong content offerings.

Flurry analyst Mary Ellen Gordon writes, “We believe price, business model, target market, and form factor all contribute to the big boost in Kindle activations at Christmas relative to other times of the year. Amazon sells Kindle tablets at cost, putting them within the Christmas budgets of more people than some other devices. The reason Amazon sells tablets at cost is that for them tablets are a channel for promoting physical goods and promoting and delivering digital content. That same retail business model means that Amazon is top of mind for many consumers during the holiday season, giving it lots of opportunity to promote its tablets as Christmas gifts.”

Amazon released the Kindle Fire HDX this fall and is marketing the tablet aggressively in advertising campaigns, using head-to-head comparisons with the iPad Air, and promoting the new “Mayday” customer service button — one that saw a response time of nine seconds during this holiday.

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  • Phone Source

    I have a powerful desktop computer but if I were to buy a tablet I would buy Kindle Fire or Microsoft Surface Pro 2.

  • Guest

    Congrats to Amazon! Winning Christmas will have benecussions for our entire region.

    • AS


  • InsaneNinja

    Charts like that are so misleading, a weird manipulation of data, showing only the change in multipliers. I’m willing to bet that the increase in Apple iPad sales that make up that 2.4x bump (and just the bump over normal) is more than the total volume sales of the kindle.

    Ex. If you sell two, and then sell 24x that, it’s still only 48. When your competitors could be selling 1000 the same week and get a bump of 2.5x to 2500.
    That’s why the old 41x was impressive. It was a multiplier over the old lower sales numbers.. (Ex. 1×41=41)

  • Chris

    Is there some reason they can’t publish the actual number of activations instead of the relative numbers?

    • Eddie Yasi

      I remember seeing some interview in which Jeff Bezos said they think giving concrete sales numbers is information competitors could use, so they only publish relative sales figures like this.

      • Guest

        Guys, how about a little attention to detail. These numbers didn’t come from AMZN, they’re from flurry.

        • Eddie Yasi

          Good point: I wonder where Flurry gets new device activation figures? Is there a way to infer that somehow or do they get these figures from the device makers themselves?

  • Timothy Collins

    I bought one for myself and, I have to say… I am using it more than any other tablet. It’s a decent product. It’s fast, it’s small enough to be easily portable and it’s useful.

  • Nick Davies

    Amazon has the best prices on all of the Kindle models! Check it out!

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