Coming In May—The $114 Kindle 3 . . .

. . . but there’s a catch.

The price of a Kindle 3 WiFi is $139, and that’s pretty much the norm anywhere you shop.  The only deviation I’ve ever seen was a slightly lower price about a month ago at a BJ’s Wholesale Club in Dania Beach, Florida, at $136.

Now comes word that sometime next month you’ll be able to purchase a brand new Kindle 3 for the low, low price of $114.  Sounds good.  But there’s no such thing as a free lunch and, apparently in the world of Jeff Bezos, there’s no such thing as a free $25 discount.  So, what exactly do you give up for that quarter of a C-note?

Surprisingly, not much.  When the Kindle 3 goes into sleep mode, the display shows a portrait of a famous author of the past on what many jokingly call, “The Dead Author Screensaver.”  With the lower priced version, you’ll instead get promotional offers from Amazon and advertisements from other corporations.  According to this Publishers Weekly article, Buick, Olay, and Visa have already queued up for this latest advertising medium.

Additionally, Amazon will have a new Kindle 3 app and website called AdMash to go along with this little scheme.  Using AdMash, owners of the reduced price Kindle 3 WiFi will be able to vote for their favorite ads and give Amazon feedback as to which ads people want cluttering up their screen when their device is sleeping.  Apparently, all future ads will eventually be screened using data derived from AdMash users.

So, if $139 was still a little steep for your wallet, and if you can stand to look at an ad or two when you’re not using your Kindle, this just might be the opportunity for which you’ve been waiting.  Just click here to pre-order an ad-sponsored Kindle 3 WiFi.

But whatever you do, don’t forget to load up that new Kindle 3 WiFi with a copy of that critically acclaimed murder mystery Decisions using only $2.99 of that $25 I just saved you.  After all, what good is that new Kindle 3 WiFi if there’s nothing on it that’s fun to read?

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