Amazon chief executive Jeff Bezos said Thursday that the online retail giant may never reveal sales figures for the Kindle and a color version of the electronic reader is "multiple" years away.
"I beg your indulgence on the question of how many Kindles have been sold," Bezos said in reply to a question at Amazon's annual shareholders meeting in Seattle, Washington.
"I'm not sure we ever will reveal all of the numbers," he said. "Our point of view on that is that there can often be a competitive advantage in keeping the numbers close."
Bezos acknowledged that he "looks at the numbers avidly every morning" but said the shareholder who asked the question "may just have to remain curious."
Declining to reveal numbers, Bezos said that while Amazon was "investing very heavily in the digital business" "I don't want people to think that it's already a big cash flow generator for us."
The Amazon CEO also said a color version of the Kindle was not imminent.
"I know it's multiple years. I don't know how many years but it's years," he said.
"I've seen the color displays in the laboratory and I can assure you they're not ready for prime time," Bezos said.
Amazon this month unveiled a large-screen version of its popular e-reader, the Kindle DX, promoting it as a handier device for reading newspapers, magazines and textbooks.
The Kindle DX costs 489 dollars. Earlier versions of the Kindle cost 359 dollars.
(c) 2009 AFP