Despite Criticisms, Kindle Fire Holds Promise for Adult

Stephen Yagielowicz

LOS ANGELES — For adult content marketers seeking opportunities for growth, catering to the latest technologies makes sense; technologies such as the Kindle Fire.

A seven inch Android powered tablet making headlines (with a rumored near-nine inch version coming in 2012), the Kindle Fire features 8GB of internal memory, which is reportedly enough to store around 80 apps, plus 10 movies or 800 songs or 6,000 books — displaying its content for up to eight hours on a single charge. This content is viewed on a sharp, 1024 x 600 pixel resolution, 169 ppi, 16 million color display, featuring clear stereo sound — providing a tempting palette for adult artists to create upon.

Targeting not only the Kindle, but Microsoft and Sony Readers, and other devices, one early entry into the marketplace was KinkforKindle.com, presented in 2009 “as a public service to the BDSM and kinky community,” by the producers of Wasteland.com.

“One of the reasons we put this site together is that we found a lot of 18th and 19th century erotic fiction being sold and copyright protected on many EBook seller sites,” Kink for Kindle chief Colin Rowntree offered. “This annoyed us as these classics are truly in the public domain.”

Kink for Kindle offers its content for free, but the company also offers mobile BDSM movies for iPhone, iPod Touch, Smartphones and more, via its various mobile device and tablet portals.

Rowntree is upbeat about the device’s potential, telling XBIZ that Kindle customers are extremely loyal and a surprisingly good market for porn.

“Kindle users have proven a profitable demographic for us,” Rowntree told XBIZ. “With the rapidly increasing performance of the platform, as evidenced by Kindle Fire, and the equally swift decline in pricing, this is definitely a technology worth developing.”

One of the major benefits of the platform is the ease of distribution for its content — unencumbered by big-name “store” and “market” policies.

“All eBook reader devices are a little different in how to put eBooks on them, but the tried and true method for most is to simply download the format type that applies to your device,” Rowntree explains, “Then copy the books from your computer to your eBook device using a standard USB cable, just like any other book or document you want to put on it that was not directly purchased from Amazon or other eBook sellers.”

The next version of the Kindle file format, Kindle Format 8, set for Kindle Fire, offers support for CSS3 and HTML5, along with fixed layouts, floating elements and more.

As good a platform as the Kindle Fire may be, however, you can’t please everyone.

“Amazon’s new Kindle Fire is almost certain to be a financial success for Amazon, and may finally make a name for Google’s Android in tablets,” Matt Asay recently wrote for The Register. “If only the success and acclaim were deserved.”

While Asay compliments the evolution of the Kindle, he asserts that it still pales in comparison to Apple’s iPad — although many users may not find fault with the device.

In addition to ergonomic complaints, Asay points to disappointing software offerings.

“Amazon has forked Android and put a fair amount of work into smoothing the user experience, but not nearly enough,” Asay noted. “Even in an area that should shine for Amazon — the book-reading experience — the interface is slow and clumsy, with a creaking lag between page turns/swipes.”

In the end, Asay summed it up best, with a nod to the perception that the Kindle Fire is more akin to a Volkswagen, than it is to the iPad’s Mercedes-class quality.

“The Kindle Fire excels at nothing, except at being considerably cheaper than the iPad [and] for most people, that will be enough,” Asay concluded. “At $199, Amazon’s Kindle Fire doesn’t have to be great; it just has to be good enough.”

With the holiday shopping season upon us, it’s doubtless that the Android tablet market will shortly swell to new highs. Hopefully, some of the money that consumers save by buying lower-priced devices will be spent on porn purchases.

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