Kindle Pessimism as Unfounded as iPhone Pessimism

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Amazon ( AMZN) reports after the close Thursday and with apologies to the media: You can't predict a Kindle disappointment without at least referencing Apple ( AAPL). You remember Apple, right? Many analysts look into the crystal balls and spoke to suppliers and consulted star charts for all we know, emerging with the conviction that the iPhone would disappoint. Apple reported jaw-droppingly good earnings and the rest is Monday afternoon history.

Most of the media, though, does not factor in history -- even such recent history.

Look at Marketwatch, which went a typical route in looking forward to this afternoon's Kindle results: "Among the wild cards for the period is the company's line of Kindle devices, including e-readers and a tablet. While Amazon does not disclose specifics on device sales, some analysts have noted signs of slowing demand for the products."

Even without a good bead on possible Kindle results, it is difficult -- if not a touch reckless -- to trumpet the same vague "signs of slowing demand" without at least referencing the fact that those signs were, just three days ago, pointing the wrong way. Is this a product of herd thought? Does it say something specifically about the way hand-held computers sell?

At this point, answers are pure conjecture. But, after Apple's iPhone performance revealed back on Monday, you have to at least question today's dark assumptions for the Kindle.

At the time of publication, Fuchs had no positions in any of the stocks mentioned in this column.

Marek Fuchs was a stockbroker for Shearson Lehman Brothers and a money manager before becoming a journalist who wrote The New York Times' "County Lines" column for six years. He also did back-up beat coverage of The New York Knicks for the paper's Sports section for two seasons and covered other professional and collegiate sports. He has contributed frequently to many of the Times' other sections, including National, Metro, Escapes, Style, Real Estate, Arts & Leisure, Travel, Money & Business, Circuits and the Op-Ed Page.

For his "Business Press Maven" column on how business and finance are covered by the media, Fuchs was named best business journalist critic in the nation by the Talking Biz website at The University of North Carolina School of Journalism and Mass Communication. Fuchs is a frequent speaker on the business media, in venues ranging from National Public Radio to the annual conference of the Society of American Business Editors and Writers.

Fuchs appreciates your feedback; click here to send him an email.

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