updated 01:50 pm EST, Mon February 8, 2010
Amazon job posts hint color Kindle and more
Amazon has hinted at a significant change in the philosophy behind its Kindle readers with job listings at its hardware design group Lab126. One, for a Hardware Display Manager, asks for a veteran recruit with experience in the LCD market and suggests Amazon might move away from e-paper displays. It has normally used companies like E Ink (now owned by PVI) exclusively for its e-book readers.
As recently as last week, Amazon has also been looking for wireless software engineers (one, two) who would help implement Internet access the Kindle doesn't already support. Among the requests, the company is looking for those experienced with Wi-Fi and hopes to implement LTE-based 4G.
The listings all point to Amazon starting 2010 with an aggressive attempt to improve the Kindle beyond its grayscale, 3G-only, non-touch design. It's widely believed to have bought a multi-touch firm and, as such, may be moving away from a traditional emphasis solely on reading and towards a more iPad-like design that sacrifices battery life for features such as advanced mobile apps and video. While the iPad is closer to Apple's smartphones in certain ways, other readers like the B&N Nook and Plastic Logic QUE have already threatened the Kindle with Wi-Fi, touchscreen interfaces or both. [via NY Times]