How Amazon can be a friend to small businesses

I’ve been testing out the Kindle Fire tablet for the last several weeks. At $199, it’s a tremendous value. It’s no iPad — I just upgraded to the new iPad as well — but it provides a solid base-level tablet and reader. I can think of a lot of uses for it: an e-book reader, a video consumption device, and a dedicated Sonos controller. But the most exciting use I can see for it would be for Amazon to turn into a device that helps small, local retailers.

Apples to oranges: Google and Amazon are too timid to copy Apple’s retail success

There is a strange duality in the world of brick and mortar tech stores today. In the last four years CompUSA, Borders, and Circuit City all went out of business. Many expect Best Buy to follow in the near future. At the same time, Apple has opened over 300 retail outlets worldwide. And recent reports indicate that Microsoft, Amazon, and Google plan to follow Apple’s lead.