Barnes and Noble Nook E-Reader Gets New York Debut

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Barnes and Noble Nook E-Reader Gets New York Debut

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Barnes & Noble CEO Steve Riggio introduced the presentation at New York's Chelsea Piers. Riggio suggested that the growing consumer market for e-books represents "a multibillion-dollar opportunity."

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Barnesandnoble.com President William Lynch talked about how the company's goal was to give customers the chance to download books anywhere at any time.

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The Nook runs on the Google Android operating system. Lynch explained that Android was chosen because it was optimized for running on small screens, such as on phones.

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Barnes & Noble launched its eBookstore in July, and the online storefront features more than 700,000 books. However, it will not allow Web browsing, because the designers felt that Web pages looked clumsy on an e-ink screen.

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In addition to the 6-inch e-ink screen, the Nook includes a multitouch color display.

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LendMe technology allows books to be "lent" to another Nook for a period of 14 days. While a book is being lent, the lending user cannot read it on his or her own device-as with a real, physical book.

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In addition to the Nook device, Barnes & Noble has released book-downloading Apps for the iPhone and iPod Touch.

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The Nook's wireless downloading is provided by AT&T's 3G network.

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The Nook, which will go on sale at the end of November, will be priced at $259. Many bestsellers and new book releases will be priced at around $9.

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Touch-screen buttons give access to the user's library, daily periodical content, the Barnes & Noble eBookstore, settings and the current book.

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The touch screen also provides navigation and information about the current eBook. A "bookmarking feature" lets users return to their place in a particular volume-not only on the Nook, but also on an iPhone or iPod Touch.

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When the user is actually reading, the multitouch display goes dark in order to cut down on distractions and save battery power.

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The Nook will compete in a crowded market that includes not only Amazon.com's Kindle, but also devices such as Plastic Logic's QUE, which will use the Barnes & Noble eBookstore.

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Lynch said the company plans to use the company's brick-and-mortar stores to promote the e-reader.

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Here's an example of the in-store display for the Nook.

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