Finding the right bookshelf for the Nook


What will the Nook’s future be?

Barnes & Noble’s Nook e-readers face fierce competition from the Kindle and iPad. B&N has tripled its advertising since 2009, adding to the huge development costs of the Nook, The Wall Street Journal reports. B&N’s EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization) have fallen to $163 million in the year ending April 2011 from $281 million the previous year.

One of the leaders of a minority shareholder firm recently said competing with Amazon and Apple is a “big-boy game” and that B&N may need partners to play that game. B&N, meanwhile, said it is seeking partners for overseas ventures.

The Wall Street Journal reports that the bookseller could possibly either sell a minority stake in the Nook line, setting up a separate management team, or sell the Nook brand outright.

I believe it would be short-sighted to sell the Nook brand outright. Barnes & Noble could very effectively use its brick and mortar stores – the ones that survive in the years ahead – to promote the Nook e-reader and its accessories. Bookstore customers are good candidates to buy e-readers. And Barnes & Noble and Nook can be co-promoted together if the corporation continues to own both brands. You lose that cohesiveness if Nook gets sold; even if a tech behemoth like Microsoft or Google buys the Nook, the new owner has lost that connection to a traditional bookstore and its customers.

Further observations on the Kindle


Here are some further observations on the Kindle:

  • Each version of the Kindle (tablet or app) returns a reader to the last page viewed in a title.
  • While the arrow buttons on the tablet make for easy page turning, it can be tedious to use them to turn back more than a few pages to return to a section; you can use the menu to “go to” a location number (numbers for various locations are shown at the bottom of every page). Or, you can sync to the furthest page read, but to do so, you must first have turned your annotations backup on, which can be found in the settings menu. The Kindle must have had Wi-Fi access enabled at the time you last had the book or article open to allow Amazon.com to store that data.
  • In the PC app, you can view the menu of available titles by most recent, title, author and length.
  • The tablet and PC app come with a dictionary, which can come in handy when reading old books with archaic words.
  • The popular highlights feature lets you see what other Kindle readers think are the most interesting passages in a book you have. Highlighted passages will be highlighted in your book.

 

%d bloggers like this: