No Worries for Now, But Holiday Shipping Delays Ahead for Kindle Fire?

For the first time, as of today, Amazon’s website and ordering process is not guaranteeing November 15 Order a Kindle Fireshipment of newly pre-ordered Kindle Fire units.

As of Friday morning, Amazon’s Kindle Fire ordering page says “Expected to ship in 3 to 5 days” for the Fire tablet, which of course could still mean a November 15 shipment, but does not guarantee that ship date.

For a Kindle Fire that I ordered this morning with overnight 1-day shipping, the Order Confirmation provided by Amazon says “Delivery estimate: Nov. 16, 2011 – Nov. 18, 2011.”

Please note: If you pre-ordered a Kindle Fire before November 11, no worries, because Amazon has been very clear that it will ship by November 15.

So, what remains to be seen is whether this is a temporary hiccup in Amazon’s supply chain for the Kindle Fire, a hedge, a bit of stress marketing to accelerate pre-holiday orders, or — worst case here — some sort of sad repeat of the 2007 and 2008 holidays seasons when the vast majority of pre-holiday Kindle orders were not shipped until February or March.

Nobody knows exactly how many orders Amazon has received for the Kindle Fire in the six and a half weeks since it began accepting pre-orders on September 28, but we’d guess that it is very close to the point where Jeff Bezos could, in passing, casually drop the word “millions” without stretching the point. But what has changed in the last few days is that in a press release on Tuesday Amazon “announced that over 16,000 stores across the U.S. will be selling the new Kindle family starting November 15. Customers will be able to visit any Best Buy, Target, Walmart, Staples, Sam’s Club, RadioShack, Office Depot, as well as several other retailers, to experience and purchase the $79 Kindle, the $99 Kindle Touch, the $149 Kindle 3G and the $199 Kindle Fire.” Even with the most efficient possible just-in-time inventory management by those retailers, those distribution channels will require at least two million additional Kindle Fire units at or very near the November 15 release date.

We’ve been impressed with Amazon’s ability to stay ahead of heavy demand for all its Kindle models since March of 2009, so we’re not predicting doom and gloom here. But I will say that this morning’s slight hint of the possibility that the demand might edge ahead of supply has us going over our Kindle Fire orders again just to make sure that we’re in a strong position to deliver the tablets to all of our winners in our Kindle Nation weekly giveaway sweepstakes.


9 Responses to No Worries for Now, But Holiday Shipping Delays Ahead for Kindle Fire?

  1. Judy Rice November 12, 2011 at 9:24 pm #

    I ordered mine when it first a while back so I should be all right and can’t wait to ge mine.

  2. Dana Marshall November 11, 2011 at 8:46 pm #

    Guess it’s a good thing I can’t afford a Kindle Fire until February at least Even though I live in WA where I have to pay sales tax no matter what I always order through Amazon, and have never picked up anything at a retailer.

  3. Cheryl Hipps November 11, 2011 at 3:04 pm #

    So, should I buy the nook tablet and cancel the Kindle Fire?

    • Kindle Nation November 11, 2011 at 5:32 pm #

      Absolutely not, in our view, Cheryl. And if you actually ***read*** the post, you’ll see that earlier orders are fine! I don’t know why anyone would choose to buy a Nook over the Kindle Fire, all things considered.

  4. Fae November 11, 2011 at 2:54 pm #

    I ordered mine within the first 48 hours listed. So, I sure hope mine is not a backlog order. I enjoy my Kindle, but a delay after early order is a no no…

    • Kindle Nation November 11, 2011 at 5:33 pm #

      No, the whole point of the post is that it’s only for orders placed today and after that they might not ship on the 15th.

      • Fae November 12, 2011 at 1:07 pm #


  5. Stoneybaloney November 11, 2011 at 2:53 pm #

    I ordered mine this morning, and the confirmation says expected receipt is Nov. 28 to Dec. 1. VERY disappointed. If I’d known the stores would have them next week, I’d have just gone out and bought it then.

    • Kindle Nation November 11, 2011 at 5:39 pm #

      Sounds like some confusion, Stoney. I don’t see how a Kindle Fire ordered today would say expect delivery Nov 28-Dec 1– they’re saying it will ship in 3-5 days. So even if your shipped in 5 days (11/16) and you chose standard shipping, you’d have it by 11/23. If you’d rather try your luck with retail stores, it won’t cost you a dime to cancel your order.