During its earnings call on Tuesday, Barnes & Noble’s chief executive officer William Lynch discussed several figures related to book sales — the most interesting of which is that eBooks are flying off the digital shelves. “We now sell three times as many digital books as all formats of physical books combined on BN.com,” Lynch said during the call, noting that the Barnes & Noble NOOK’s market share has increased slightly to 27%, up from 25% last quarter. Similarly, the firm’s NOOK business saw nearly 300% growth over the same quarter last year. Brick and mortar store sales were down 3% for the quarter. We can’t say we’re that surprised by the figures, after all, the new NOOK convinced us to switch to eBooks. More →
Barnes & Noble took the wraps off of its latest eReader, the “All-New NOOK,” just last month. Its grayscale screen strays from the NOOK Color, and while the device still runs Android, it looks and feels much more like a traditional eReader. However, the new NOOK has a brand new E Ink Pearl display that not only works as a touchscreen, but refreshes less often than other eReaders and transitions faster. I’ve been using the new NOOK for the past week extensively, staying up late at night reading and pulling the NOOK out on the subway for quick page turns between stops. At $139, the NOOK is competitively priced with the Wi-Fi Kindle, but is it good enough to be your next (or first) eReader? My full review is after the break.
Barnes & Noble hasn’t acknowledged it yet, but the new NOOK actually does have a built-in web browser. It’s no surprise — the NOOK is powered by Android, so it should have some sort of browsing experience built-in — though it doesn’t work that well. We tested it with our review unit briefly by simply entering in a URL into the unit’s search function. Sites such as CNN and The New York Times failed to load at all, while others like Twitter’s mobile site booted just fine. The experience is far from perfect right now, but perhaps this means Barnes & Noble will patch the eReader with more robust support in the future. Hit the jump for a video of the browser in action, filmed by The eBook Reader. We’ll have our review of the all new NOOK up soon, so stay tuned! More →
We just spent some time with Barnes & Noble’s just-announced eReader, the all-new NOOK, and we have to say… we’re impressed. From the size, to the design, to the gorgeous new E Ink Pearl display, this device is leaps and bounds better than the previous-generation NOOK. What’s more, we think it will definitely push Barnes & Noble even further in the growing eReader space, and it should have the team over at Amazon working overtime on its next Kindle design. The exterior of all-new NOOK is composed entirely of soft-touch rubber that feels amazing compared to the hard plastic found on other readers. The new E Ink display is fantastic, and we definitely appreciated the work Barnes & Noble put into improving the seizure-inducing page transitions that plague all eReaders. They’re still there, but they’re much improved compared to older readers. The addition of a 6-inch touchscreen makes interacting with the device much more enjoyable than non-touch eBook readers, and it also helps make the size of the device perfect for carrying in a small bag or even a coat pocket. Barnes & Noble’s is taking pre-orders for its all-new NOOK starting now, and the device will begin shipping on or around June 10th for $139. In the meantime, definitely check out our hands-on gallery below!