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.

Latest Video

View all videos »

Search »

Another gadget you don’t really need. Will not work once you get it home. New model out in 4 weeks. Battery life is too short to be of any use.

— From the fact sheet for a fake product entitled Useless Plasticbox 1.2 (an actual empty plastic box) placed in L.A.-area Best Buy stores by an artist called Plastic Jesus