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Waterstones stops selling Kindle e-readers due to “pitiful” demand

Waterstones is no longer selling Kindle e-readers because the demand for them simply isn’t there.

That’s according to the firm’s managing director James Daunt, who described sales of the devices at his stores as “pitiful”.

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He told The Bookseller: “Sales of Kindles continue to be pitiful so we are taking the display space back in more and more shops.

“It feels very much like the life of one of those inexplicable bestsellers; one day piles and piles, selling like fury; the next you count your blessings with every sale because it brings you closer to getting it off your shelves forever to make way for something new.”

Amazon has always been tight-lipped about Kindle sales figures, so it’s unclear whether the poor sales apply only to Waterstones stores.

However, it’s worth noting that Kindle e-readers last much longer than smartphones and don’t need replacing nearly as often.

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There’s also evidence to suggest that e-book sales have dipped of late, while print is making a comeback of sorts.

Figures from the Association of American Publishers suggest that many literary fans are now “hybrid readers” who prefer a mixture of print and digital.

Amazon continues to offer e-readers, launching a new Paperwhite earlier this year, but is pinning its hardware hopes mainly on its Fire range of devices.

Just last month, the retailer launched a £50 version of its Fire Tablet in an attempt to target the budget demographic.

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