The Boxelope, Amazon Lab126’s goal-oriented Kindle packaging redesign

Intense changes to its Paperwhite packaging returned the Kindle to an e-commerce-friendly primary packaging design, reducing costs and meeting sustainability goals along the way.

The first Kindle launched in November, 2007, and sold out in 5 ½ hours. There are currently more than 5 million eBooks accessible, and the Kindle is on its tenth generation.

As indicated by Katie Exum and Gary Dong, Packaging Engineers at Amazon Lab126, Kindle packaging has advanced throughout the years, from retail-forward, to e-commerce-friendly, and back again.

Exum and Dong talked at ISTA European Packaging Symposium in Amsterdam a week ago, giving a case study of the 2018 redesign. They said there were seven challenges presented to the new design: ability to fit mail slot delivery; more units per load; lower cost; less material; brand alignment; product protection; and, “customer delight.”

Since Amazon Lab126 was at that point beginning with what Exum and Dong alluded to as a “robust product” that had withstood thorough testing, the design team worked with the following three tenets: easy unboxing of primary packaging; a “less is more” philosophy; and, the use of paper-based packaging.

The team came up with the “Boxelope,” a paper package with thin design and an satisfactorily loud pull-strip opener, which could be mailed in a padded envelope. Because customers were sometimes surprised by the actual size of the product, a to-scale image of the device was included on the cover.

Exum and Dong said it was then time to convince the internal stakeholders of why the change to the Boxelope was a good idea, and cited the following reasons:

The new plan is socially dependable, with material savings providing a 30% lower annual cost.

first generation Kindle packaging was nearly 300 grams, down to less than 50 grams with the 10th generation Kindle Paperwhite.

first generation Kindle used 8000 trees per million units, down to 1000 per million units with the Paperwhite.

Unit load thickness – 72% more units per pallet.

Conveyance costs – lower costs through alternative delivery methods such as a padded mailer, vs. small parcel packaging of 2017.

Worldwide client studies of the new packaging reflected positive views such as shelf differentiation, a positive opening experience, green credentials and sleekness of the product.

There were additionally some negative responses, notwithstanding, including an absence of client saw cost savings, missing the ability to re-seal the package after the strip had been pulled, and, product size misjudgment.

Exum and Dong refered to the accompanying three keys to actualizing strong worldwide packaging changes:

Know your product fragility and avoid over-engineering the packaging.

Build a business case with global perspective.

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