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Fresh on the heels of a brisk holiday sales season, Amazon is planning to roll out the large-screen model of its popular Kindle line of e-readers to more than a 100 countries later this month.
The global launch of the Kindle DX, which made its domestic debut last May, follows the international roll-out of Amazon's (NASDAQ: AMZN) smaller e-reader in October.
With a screen of 9.7-inches, the oversize Kindle DX has more than twice the surface area of the original Kindle. Amazon markets the DX as an e-reader suited for business travelers, students or other consumers who would use the device for reading highly formatted content, such as newspapers or cookbooks.
Amazon has boasted that the Kindle line outsold all other products on its site this holiday season, claiming that for the first time consumers bought more e-books than printed editions.
But the company has refused to release specific sales figures for the Kindle, a longstanding policy that has stoked considerable curiosity throughout the industry and some frustration in the financial community.
The Kindle, which first appeared in November 2007, is widely credited for establishing e-reader devices as a mainstream consumer technology product. Since then, numerous other vendors have brought devices to market or announced plans for future models, with some set to make their debut this week at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.
Starting today, Amazon is accepting pre-orders for the international version of the Kindle DX, which it said will begin shipping on Jan. 19. The device sells for $489.
Amazon said it has sold the smaller Kindle in more than 130 countries.
The larger DX contains a PDF reader that, coupled with the large screen, has made it popular among business travelers eager to thin out the jumble of papers they carry.
The Kindle DX can store up to 3,500 books, and carries a screen equipped with 16 shades of gray to render print and images in an electronic-ink display that is Amazon's best effort at replicating the visual qualities of paper.
The large-screen device is also billed as an alternative distribution channel for newspapers and magazines. More than 80 newspapers around the world are available on the Kindle either as subscriptions or single issues, as well as more than 40 magazines.
Article courtesy of InternetNews.com.