Microsoft likes to read too, you know? If not, you do now. Barnes & Noble has today announced the completion of their previously announced strategic partnership in NOOK Media LLC, a recently formed Barnes & Noble subsidiary that relies on a partnership with Microsoft. The new company is being established in order to further embrace education and consumer electronics segments, as it comprises the digital and College businesses of Barnes & Noble. All told, Microsoft is forking over $300 million for the opportunity
"As demand for digital content continues to increase, we are focused on bringing ground-breaking reading and learning content and technologies to more people in more formats than ever before, including the imminent launch of our exceptional NOOK reading application for Windows 8," said William Lynch, CEO of Barnes & Noble. "We look forward to working closely with our new partner Microsoft to add value to their innovative new platform by bringing great reading experiences and one of the world's preeminent digital bookstores to millions of Windows 8 users."
"NOOK Media is a leader in developing the next generation of digital reading and we look forward to the company bringing one of the world's largest digital libraries to Windows 8 devices via their upcoming Windows 8 app," said Andy Lees, President at Microsoft. "We are also excited by NOOK Media's product roadmap and expansion into markets around the world as demonstrated by their recent launches in the United Kingdom."
Beyond that, much remains up in the air, but it's interesting to see Microsoft using partnerships to snag pieces of some pies (e-reading), while diving headfirst into other pies (Windows 8 tablets). One can only imagine what the market place would look like had Microsoft creates its own Courier-like device to rival the Kindle and Nook lines...