Why "Five or Six" New Kindle Fires Is Really Just Two Kindle Fires

There's a Reuters report out there this morning saying there will be "five or six" new Kindle Fire models, according Demos Parneros, president of U.S. Retail for Staples. That doesn't mean what you think it means, exactly.

Whatever you think of Mr. Parneros's credibility, here's why that number is dumb: It's almost definitely based on the number of SKUs that Amazon will send to Staples. That means a separate "model" for each storage option—or data option. So, if the next Fire gets, say, just a 7-inch model, with 8, 16, and 32GB storage options, each of those having either Wi-Fi-only or 3G options, that's six SKUs right there. And that's before you get into a 10-inch model. That's not to say that that's exactly how this would break down; the "five or six" number is just hugely misleading.

Will there be a 10-inch Kindle Fire? Maybe. But chances are you're not going to find out from a retail head eight-ish weeks out with a sketchy guess about the number of SKUs his stores will stock. [Reuters]