On Tuesday, Barnes & Noble introduced two new tablets into the digital market – the Nook HD and the Nook HD plus. Company executives told The New York Times that the products were lighter and faster than comparable tablets.
In a market dominated by Apple, Amazon and Google, Barnes & Noble wants to take charge in the lower end of the digital reader market, with a seven-inch tablet for $199 and a nine-inch for $269. The newest iPad, for example, starts at $499.
William Lynch, Barnes & Noble chief executive, said in an interview earlier this week that his company thinks there is space in the tablet market for a product that is perhaps a notch below the iPad for half the price.
"So we're not trying to go head-to-head with the iPad," Lynch said. "We think that product does what it does well. What we're trying to do is fill the gap of delivering an exceptional media tablet that's much more affordable."
The bookstore chain is also adding a video service to its repertoire, called Nook Video. Similar to Apple's iTunes, customers can stream and download movies and TV shows for free onto their televisions and mobile devices. Content can also be digitally stored. Barnes & Noble will also have access to current HBO shows and Oscar-nominated hits through entertainment deals with companies like Disney, Viacom and Warner Brothers.
Such business agreements are also beneficial to the major studios, as they have lost video revenue over the years to a drop in DVD sales, according to the source. This option gives viewers another outlet for viewing.
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