Barnes & Noble has announced a new partnership with Samsung to produce co-branded tablets. The partnership combines leading Samsung tablet technology with the award-winning NOOK reading experience.
In early August, the companies are expected to introduce the Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK. The 7-inch device will be displayed alongside NOOK eReaders at Barnes & Nobles 700 bookstores across the United States and online at BN.com.
The decision to partner with Samsung is being described as a key component of the booksellers efforts to rationalize its NOOK business.
The company will continue to develop its line of GlowLight eReaders in-house.
According to Michael P. Huseby, chief executive officer of Barnes & Noble:
Partnering with Samsung brings our customers great new products and evidences our commitment to our NOOK customers and growing our digital content business.
One year ago, Barnes & Noble announced they would no longer make their line of NOOK Android-based tablet devices after poor sales. In a statement to investors at the time, the company said that it would no longer make the NOOK HD and NOOK HD+ and instead create a partnership model for manufacturing in the competitive color tablet market.
It will be interesting to see just how successful the partnership between Barnes & Noble and Samsung will become. On one hand, it looks like a brilliant move given the large number of Barnes & Noble retail locations. Of course, that wasn’t enough to make the NOOK a success.
Rather than hurt sales of Apple’s iPad, perhaps the move will most affect Amazon and its line of Kindle Fire tablets.