Amazon Gets More Into Gadgets

The New York Times reports that Amazon has bought the maker of Stanza, an e-book reader application for the iPhone. Judging from its last quarterly financial results, Amazon is doing quite nicely despite the current sucky economy. One small but highly visible contributor to its bottom line is the Kindle e-reader device, which has gotten largely favorable reviews. In a sense, Amazon is buying a much smaller competitor in the e-reader market, since Stanza's parent company Lexcycle is a small software outfit based in Austin and Portland. In another sense, Stanza is part of a much bigger potential marketplace, since there are far more iPhones than Kindles in the world. It's a shrewd move for Jeff Bezos and company. If they can't sell us a book--or other content--on one platform, we can order it via another. And all from the same Web site.

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