Microsoft And Barnes & Noble Strike Nook-Related Partnership

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News Posted: Mon, Apr 30 2012 8:55 AM
Microsoft sure has been making the news quite frequently, and not all of it has to do with Windows or Xbox. This week, the company is announcing a strategic partnership in a new Barnes & Noble subsidiary, which will reportedly "accelerate the transition to e-reading, which is revolutionizing the way people consume, create, share and enjoy digital content." It's interesting to think about this given that Microsoft itself killed a 'Courier' project a few years back that had the chance to eat the Kindle's lunch (let alone the Nook), but now, Microsoft is left to buddy up with companies still in that game in order to get a slice of the pie.

The new subsidiary will initially be called Newco, and it's expected to bring together the digital and College businesses of Barnes & Noble. Microsoft will make a $300 million investment in Newco at a post-money valuation of $1.7 billion in exchange for an approximately 17.6% equity stake. Barnes & Noble will own approximately 82.4% of the new subsidiary, which will have an ongoing relationship with the company's retail stores. B&N will obviously change the name at some point, but it makes us wonder why this news was rushed out without a name. Is something similar about to happen over at Amazon?


That aside, Microsoft is promising a Nook application for Windows 8, as well as Nook Study software. It's also important to note that both companies have settled their patent litigation (phew!), and moving forward, Barnes & Noble and Newco will have a royalty-bearing license under Microsoft's patents for its Nook eReader and Tablet products. Microsoft getting back into schools in a big way via eBooks? Yeah, we could see that.
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rapid1 replied on Mon, Apr 30 2012 10:47 AM

The funniest part about all of this is percentage. Apple supposedly has this gargantuan market but when you come to the percentage of say iPhones VS Androids in the cellular arena it is relatively close.

When you come to anything else such as slate/tablet type devices the first one and I believe either prior to or at the same time as the initial introduction to portable computers period (IE laptops) by IBM was a tablet.

The king of the PC market period is Windows and Office by Microsoft, one of the largest used program on an Apple computer is M$ Office as well. So you look at this and you think oh yeah but Apple has the iPad 1/2/3 which are the kings of the world in tablets but it is not true.

Now this specialized part of that market (eReaders IE: Nook, Kindle, etc) is a whole different world but it is of course joining now with the color eReaders that are now being seen, used, and positioned in the market as tablets or all purpose devices.

To tell you the truth I have been thinking about grabbing the Samsung Galaxy Note as my all around device. It seems to combine everything. It is an eReader, a netbook, a Smart Phone, a Tablet/Slate etc. it does it all seemingly, and it has an attached pen you can draw pretty colored fish or write notes to your buddies with.

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rapid1 replied on Mon, Apr 30 2012 10:51 AM

Sorry that was a bit off topic and I think this is all a very smart idea by Microsoft as in the end with this device and partnership along with the Nokia/M$ windows phones will or very likely could produce something just like the Galaxy Note and also add another media outlet for M$. In the end a device like a Galaxy note or a Nook/Windows phone combo is very visible as a possibility. In the end I think a combination device like that will be the norm for the market and for a portable all around do everything device!

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