Barnes & Noble Now Offering Free Wi-Fi Nationwide

You know, it makes sense, really. Considering that Barnes & Noble is gearing up to launch what it calls the "world's largest bookstore," it should probably make sure that a maximum amount of people have access to its in-store Wi-Fi network, not to mention test it out to ensure that it can handle the strain of a million digital bookworms sucking down new material at once.

After Starbucks announced that its Wi-Fi HotSpots would be available gratis for iPhone users, B&N has stepped in to announce complimentary AT&T Wi-Fi for any customer that visits a Barnes & Noble bookstore nationwide. All customers shopping in Barnes & Noble stores can now freely download and preview any of the over 700,000 eBook titles with hundreds of thousands of public domain titles available from Google, with that number expected to reach one million in short order.

Steve Riggio, CEO of Barnes & Noble, said the move was a natural one:

"Barnes & Noble pioneered the concept of retail stores as community centers. By providing no-fee Wi-Fi access, we are not only meeting our customers’ needs, but extending the sense of community that has always been in our stores. This is a natural progression of our digital strategy to provide customers with more choices in how, when and where they want to read."

The existing AT&T Wi-Fi network at Barnes & Noble has been available to customers since 2005, but it wasn't until now that anyone would just walk into a Barnes & Noble store and have complimentary and unlimited access to the Web. Gives you a whole new reason to rekindle that interest in "reading," now doesn't it?

Customers can also download free Barnes & Noble Apps giving them access to the world’s largest eBookstore with over 700,000 eBooks titles and exclusive content, customer reviews, information about in-store events, store locations, and more.

The free apps include:

Barnes & Noble Bookstore app for iPhone and iPod touch allows customers to:

  • Discover their next great read by browsing bestsellers, B&N Recommends lists, new releases or watching video interviews with authors.
  • Check the events calendar for celebrity book signings, readings, musical performances and children’s Storytimes.
  • Find the closest Barnes & Noble, get maps and directions.
  • Use the iPhone’s camera to snap a photo of a front cover and within seconds promptly retrieve product details, editorial reviews, and customer ratings – even find and reserve a copy in the nearest store.

Barnes & Noble eReader app for the Barnes & Noble eBookstore – enabling convenient anytime, anywhere eBook reading on iPhone and iPod touch; BlackBerry® smartphones, PC’s and Mac® laptops and desktops. Offers customers:

    • Instant access to more than 700,000 eBook titles.
    • Hundreds of new releases and bestsellers at $9.99.
    • More than half a million public domain titles available.
    • Powerful tools to optimize the reading experience, including the ability to modify type size and font and annotate and bookmark text, as well as an innovative auto-scroll feature enabling users hands free reading.
    • Read free eBooks today: