Fire – Amazon Launched Their Sputnik Today

At the beginning of the month – before I knew anything of today’s Amazon Fire announcement – I announced that Amazon (along with Mozilla and Samsung) were going to be tomorrow’s tech innovation leaders.

Scanning through the Amazon Fire page I was immediately struck by how it neatly integrates everything Amazon has been working on to date; eBooks, streaming media, frustration-free packaging, Amazon Prime – it’s all in there. (I’m sure will be there next week)

Undoubtedly, this is a Sputnik from Amazon to Apple. The iPad was once the most vertically integrated, commerce-oriented, mobile device. Today, it’s the Amazon Fire.

Every single interaction with the Amazon Fire is a commercial one. Even just browsing the web..

“…Amazon will capture and control every Web transaction performed by Fire users. Every page they see, every link they follow, every click they make, every ad they see is going to be intermediated by one of the largest server farms on the planet. People who cringe at the privacy and data-mining implications of the Facebook Timeline ought to be just floored by the magnitude of Amazon’s opportunity here….In essence the Fire user base is Amazon’s Mechanical Turk, scraping the Web for free and providing Amazon with the most valuable cache of user behavior in existence.” – Chris Espinosa

Which means the Amazon Fire is also a Sputnik to Facebook and Google. There’s no need to encourage web publishers to include +1 and ‘Like’ buttons on their websites when every single request goes through your servers. There’s no need to get called on the carpet for dropping more cookies when someone logs out when – again – every single request goes through your servers. There’s no need to announce redesigned, more marketer-friendly page layouts when – lastly – every single request goes through your servers.

Many years ago, I smiled when I was crunching server logs and all the traffic seemed to come from northern Virginia. Tomorrow it may come from a small handful of EC2 zones. Maybe Amazon will be generous enough to forward the geolocation data in the Silk browser requests.

Yes – I have one on pre-order.