Kindle is most gifted Amazon item, ever

Statement on holiday sales declares the Kindle king; On Christmas Day, for the first time ever, more books for the e-reader sold than physical copies.

Amazon's second-generation Kindle
Amazon's second-generation Kindle Corinne Schulze/CNET

Amazon.com on Saturday released its annual post-Christmas statement on holiday sales and made one thing clear: the Kindle was king, perhaps fueled by continued shifts in plans for shipments of Barnes & Noble's competing Nook e-reader.

"We are grateful to our customers for making Kindle the most gifted item ever in our history," said Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos.

In another milestone for the e-reader, the company noted that on Christmas Day, for the first time ever, Amazon customers bought more Kindle books than physical books. The company didn't offer specific numbers for either category.

The peak shopping day for the online retailer was December 14, when customers ordered more than 9.5 million items worldwide, "a record-breaking 110 items per second."

Among those items bought between November 15 and December 19, the top electronics, following the Kindle, were Apple's iPod Touch 8GB and the Garmin Nuvi 260W GPS.

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In the video game category, top sellers were the Wii Fit Plus with Balance Board; New Super Mario Bros., and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 .

Among software purchases, top items were Microsoft Office Home and Student 2007, Adobe Photoshop Elements 8, and Microsoft Office 2008 for Mac (Home and Student Edition).

Top wireless purchases included the Nokia 5800 XpressMusic (unlocked), Plantronics 510 Bluetooth Headset, and BlackBerry Bold 9700 Phone (AT&T).

Other top selling gadgets included Casio's Waveceptor Atomic Dual-Time Watch, Oster's Electric Wine-Bottle Opener, Omron's HJ-112 Digital Pocket Pedometer, and Bosch's Laser Distance Measuring Device.

We'll have more comprehensive coverage on what looks to be a strong online holiday sales season as the figures come in. In the meantime, here are a few more fun gadget sales factoids from Amazon:

• If all the computers customers purchased this holiday were stacked one on top of the other, they would be more than twice as high as Mount Everest.
• Amazon customers bought more than 50 times more light therapy devices this holiday season than there are sunny days in Seattle the entire year.
• For the holiday time period alone, Amazon customers purchased enough shoot-and-share camcorders to supply 50 years' worth of nonstop YouTube watching.
• Amazon customers purchased so many Blu-ray disc players, that if you lined them up side to side, they would stretch for more than 27 miles.
• During the 2009 holiday season, Amazon customers bought enough 8GB iPod Touches to play 442 years of continuous music.
• In 2009, Amazon customers purchased enough heart rate monitor watches to put one on the wrist of everyone who finished the New York City marathons in 2008 and 2009.
• The last Local Express Delivery order that was delivered in time for Christmas, was placed by a Prime member and went to Seattle. It was a Kindle that was ordered at 1:43 p.m. on Christmas Eve and delivered at 4:57 p.m. that evening.

About the author

Michelle Meyers, associate editor, has been writing and editing CNET News stories since 2005. But she's still working to shed some of her old newspaper ways, first honed when copy was actually cut and pasted. When she's not fixing typos and tightening sentences, she's working with reporters on story ideas, tracking media happenings, or freshening up CNET News' home page.

 

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