A leaked internal memo revealed earlier today that Target will no longer stock Amazon- or Kindle-branded products as of May 13.
Whatever stock remains after that day will be sold off and not replenished.
Amazon Kindle Fire
Sources cite a "conflict of interest" as the reason for the move, though Target's statement doesn't shed much light on the situation:
"Target continually evaluates its product assortment to deliver the best quality and prices for our guests," the retailer said.
"Target is phasing out Kindles and Amazon- and Kindle-branded products in the spring of 2012. We will continue to offer our guests a full assortment of ereaders and supporting accessories including the Nook."
Apple to blame?
One possible source of the conflict between the Amazon Kindle and Target stores is the fact that Apple and Target recently partnered up to build Apple "mini-stores" in 25 Target locations this year.
Apple and Amazon haven't exactly been buddies lately. The Department of Justice recently filed an antitrust suit against Apple and five major book publishers for colluding to keep Apple's e-book prices lower than those on Amazon and similar retailers.
Apple promised to stick to their guns and defend themselves in court in the matter, so it's not a stretch to assume that they're not happy with Amazon at the moment.
It does seem slightly far-fetched, though, that they'd be able to convince Target to cease all ties with the Kindle, which has historically sold well at the retailer.
Amazon's Kindle Fire 2 is coming
The Kindle Fire 2 will no doubt sell like hotcakes, so why Target would choose now to break off their relationship with Amazon is a mystery.
The Kindle Fire and Apple's iPad aren't even in the same price range, after all.
Unless, of course, the next Kindle Fire will indeed carry that rumored quad-core Tegra, in which case it's going to cost more than the current Kindle's $200.
Amazon's Kindle Fire can still be found in physical retail stores including Best Buy, Walmart and Staples.
Via The Verge
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