Best Buy Backtracks: Kindle Fire NOT Available Today? Double Check.


Over the weekend, Best Buy lured Amazon Kindle Fire buyers by baiting a hook with the promise they’d have the hotness in-stores on November 15th. People like me, who wanted the Kindle Fire as early as possible, figured we could get the Fire a full day in advance since Amazon SHIPS the devices on the 15th meaning you’d receive it the 16th or later. Early adopter addiction.

So I stood at Best Buy waiting for it to open. I walked in with my wallet. And I walked out with… nothing.

“We don’t have the Kindle Fire in stock yet. Our computers say it’s shipping.”

That’s the answer I got from the Best Buy rep at the Inner Harbor store in downtown Baltimore. There were a few others around me who were visibly irritated so I took the initiative to speak up. They sent out an E-Mail indicating they would be available in stores on the 15th. But surely the shipment was on the way, arriving momentarily, or at least by the end of the day- right? Wrong.

When asked when we could expect the store to get the Kindle Fire, this was the answer we got:

“It says shipping. That’s all we know. That means it could get here in 1 hour,  by 5pm today, or 3 weeks from now. We’ll know when we’re getting it when they walk through the door with them.”

Three weeks? Really? Yup- he confirmed my disbelief. At this point, it seemed like nothing more than a ploy designed for us to bypass Amazon in favor of Best Buy, with blatant disregard to whether or not they could actually fulfill our expectations. Maybe the decision went something like: “Promise them the Fire on the 15th, and maybe we’ll get it maybe we won’t, but at least they won’t buy it from Amazon and we’ll have them in our store.”?

I kind of laughed it off, wished everyone luck, and rolled out. Shipment delays happen, but this one just didn’t sit right with me.

I drove home and my phone dinged: E-Mail. I opened it up and read the most recent title:

Your order of 3X “Kindle Fire, Full Color 7″…” has shipped!

These Fire’s are for a contest- much like the one we had yesterday (stay tuned for more). While I’m fortunate enough to have Fire’s coming to my doorstep tomorrow, the rest of my Baltimore comrades are left wondering: should they go home and pre-order it for rush delivery? Or hope Best Buy gets them before the 3 week possibility they suggested?

DING! I then got ANOTHER E-Mail from Amazon… an E-Mail saying the Kindle Fire was now shipping for $199, just as they had promised the entire time.

Amazon has the formula down: under promise, over deliver. In fact, they started shipping some of their Kindle Fire’s yesterday (one day early). Some will read this article as whining but it’s meant to be read as warning: CALL your local Best Buy BEFORE you drive to the store to purchase the Fire. Make sure they have it in stock.

I understand things happen, but things fell through on one too many levels here:

  • The whole point of Best Buy’s e-mail was in the suggestion they would have the Kindle Fire a day early
  • People opted to buy from Best Buy instead of Amazon because of this communication
  • They didn’t have the Kindle Fire a day early
  • Their response/support/apology was to explain that it could be anywhere between 1 hour or 3 weeks before it arrives

What a bummer.

I’d also like to use this opportunity to endorse the heck out of by far my favorite place to shop and where I’ll be doing most of my holiday shopping.

Did you show up early at Best Buy? Did you get your Kindle Fire? Tell us about your experience! And don’t forget to visit our KINDLE FIRE FORUMS!

Rob Jackson
I'm an Android and Tech lover, but first and foremost I consider myself a creative thinker and entrepreneurial spirit with a passion for ideas of all sizes. I'm a sports lover who cheers for the Orange (College), Ravens (NFL), (Orioles), and Yankees (long story). I live in Baltimore and wear it on my sleeve, with an Under Armour logo. I also love traveling... where do you want to go?

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  1. You can check in store availability on thier website. In NYC it is only available in the Union Square store.

  2. You can check in-store availability on there website. In NYC it is only available in the Union Square store.

    1. This is a fair response. But they indicated “Available in Stores on November 15th” and not “Available in select stores November 15th, contact your local Best Buy or check your store’s website for details.” They made it seem like hands-down, they’d have the Fire.

    2. Thinks for the tip.  Just checked my local store while I was on hold over the phone with them.  It is available – Colonial Heights, VA.

  3. I picked up 2 this morning. I did have to go to 2 BB stores as the 1st one did not receive any shipments.

    1. He told us the entire Baltimore area was receiving shipments but none of them arrived. Not sure if he actually knew that or not… but I figured he would be helpful enough to call some other stores or something. Anything.

  4. Mine will arrive today.  Probably thanks to bestbuy, amazon shipped preorders early so they would arrive today I cant wait to get off of work.

  5. “What a bummer”? You’re being far too kind..

  6. My local store looks to have them!

  7. Hey I just got back from Baltimore! Got some great panoramic shots with my Dinc 2 from the World Trade Center and Federal Hill!

  8. For Kindle Fire 2 people will remember that Best Buy got them before mail order customers.  So they’ll hold off pre-orders, making it tougher for Amazon to predict demand. 

    Amazon is anything but stupid – they just sacrificed their online customers to get physical distribution for Kindle.

  9. they shipped last  night, we are delivering them in California today. i received about 100 in Bakersfield this morning. 

  10. I noticed that the Inner Harbor store says “unavailable” while all other stores in the area say “In Store Only” for availability on Best Buy’s website. I bet if you went to another one they would have it.

  11. Log onto Amazon, sign up for the 30 day free trial of Amazon Prime, if you haven’t already, use the $3.99 overnight shipping and purchase the Kindle Fire from Amazon. Still come out less than purchasing at Best Buy.

  12. I wouldn’t willingly give Best Buy any of my money unless it was severely discounted vs other stores anyway.

  13. Typical. Every six months or so I go into Best Buy looking for something I need quickly and they don’t have it. Then I remember why I don’t go there more often.

  14. got mine from bestbuy, however unable to get the netflix app to work

    1. netflix hasn’t released an app for fire yet…..

  15. As of 9:30 AM, only one store in the Denver Metro area had them in stock.  I drove over there, 20 miles, and got mine.  By the time I got back, 7 other stores in the area showed them in stock.

    As an aside, I went in to Walmart this morning to see if they had the Kindle Fire in stock, and the guy asked, “What’s that?  A game controller?”  DOH!

  16. Ridiculous fail by best buy. I give them 24 months tops before going under like Circuit City and Borders. Tried to go look at one and got the same, they are still not here. Really? Y’all announced you were going to have them today. How about the Rezound or the Razr? Nope, don’t have those either…

  17. Best buy in Portland, Oregon has plenty in stock. Said they arrived 5 min before store opened. Check your local best buy again. They may have arrived by now.

  18. I work at BestBuy in Seattle and we got our shipment about 5 minutes after we opened. I work in mobile and apparently I was the only one in the store that could install screen protectors this morning, I installed too many!

  19. Im late with my comment, but picked one up for my son yesterday morning at Staples. No hassle, no grief. Props to them for not being the fiasco like the yellow tagged store across the street.

  20. I just got mine and still wondering how to figure out all the features.

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