GameStop Carrying Kindle Fire Tablets7 Dec, 2012 By: Erik Gruenwedel
Video game retailer bucks national trend
GameStop, the nation’s largest video game retailer, Dec. 7 said it has begun selling Kindle Fire – a move that counters nationwide efforts by big box retailers not to carry Amazon’s flagship tablet.
Grapevine, Texas-based GameStop through Jan. 13 is giving customers a $25 Amazon.com gift card with the purchase of a new Kindle Fire. Consumers can also get up to $100 in-store credit when they trade in an original Kindle Fire.
The Kindle Fire HD 7” ($199.99) is available for purchase in all 4,400 U.S. GameStop stores. Kindle Fire HD 8.9" ($299.99) and Kindle Fire 7” ($159.99) are also available in select stores.
“Kindle Fire HD, with its custom HD display, gyroscope and accelerometer with full tilt and turn controls is great for gaming, and the perfect choice for GameStop’s customer base,” said Mike McKenna, VP, Amazon Kindle, in a statement.
Popularity of Amazon’s tablet (initial production runs sold out quickly) prompted Walmart earlier this year to stop carrying the Kindle Fire brand – a move emulated by Target and other retailers. Best Buy sells Kindle Fire in stores only.
In addtion to streaming, transactional VOD and electronic sellthrough, tablets are conduits for all varieties of ecommerce. With Amazon's online sales prowess, observers suggested retailers selling the Kindle Fire was akin to a Trojan Horse of sorts that could undermine their own online and store-based sales.
GameStop has those issues in spades: It posted a horrific third-quarter loss of $624.3 million, citing a weak slate of new-release titles and poor same-store sales. While Amazon sells video games, GameStop believes selling the Kindle Fire will increase store traffic as well as spike trade-ins.
“Android tablets are topping many holiday lists, so it’s the perfect time to add Kindle Fire to GameStop’s mobile electronics selection,” said Joe Gorman, VP of mobile at GameStop. “And with customers able to trade old video games, devices and more toward the purchase of new products, including Kindle Fire, we’re making it easier than ever for customers to get the holiday gifts they want.”