Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

Barnes & Noble Gets Ready to Fire Back at the Kindle With a Nook Tablet

Barnes & Noble is set to unveil its newest Nook at a New York press conference Monday, but the Internet works on a faster schedule, and marketing materials for the new gadget hit the Web Thursday.

The upshot: The bookseller looks as if it will compete with Amazon’s $199 Kindle Fire tablet with a $249 Nook tablet.

Barnes & Noble will apparently tell consumers that its device is worth the extra $50 because it has more memory and a faster processor. I’m sure that the Amazon reps will counter by explaining that their gadget works hand in hand with Amazon’s cloud services, which means that its Internet-based servers will handle much of the processing and storage duties.

In the big picture, the two devices are making a similar pitch. Both run versions of Google’s Android operating system; both are meant primarily as entertainment/consumption devices, not work machines; and both offer considerably fewer features than Apple’s iPad line, at a much lower price. We’ll see how consumers react this month, when both gadgets are scheduled to ship.

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I think the NSA has a job to do and we need the NSA. But as (physicist) Robert Oppenheimer said, “When you see something that is technically sweet, you go ahead and do it and argue about what to do about it only after you’ve had your technical success. That is the way it was with the atomic bomb.”

— Phil Zimmerman, PGP inventor and Silent Circle co-founder, in an interview with Om Malik