I love life as a consumer.  When businesses compete for my dollars, they do the hard work and I get the benefits.

For instance, Amazon is coming out with a version of their Kindle book reader that “only” supports wifi, and cannot receive books using phone signals.  They’re charging $139 for it.  Nice price for a pretty cool reader.

And then there’s Kmart.  Yes, that Kmart.  They are offering a general-purpose touchpad computer running Android for $150.  Android is Google’s phone-oriented operating system that other tablet makers have started using.  You can read about all the potential deficiencies here, but that’s still not a hands-on review.

So, in this little portion of the consumer space, a choice: nicely-designed single-purpose device, or ten bucks more for an unproven general-purpose thingie, neither of which are completely portable.

I’m not ready to jump yet on either of these.  I want my next device to be both a phone and a computer.  I want it to be fairly cheap and to have a virtually unlimited data plan.  Having signed up earlier this year for a two-year phone plan, and having little extra cash in the budget, I will have time to let the competitors fight it out in the marketplace.

And you know who will win?  You and I will.

I think I really like capitalism and the free market.