New York — Samsung and Barnes & Noble’s Nook Media subsidiary unveiled a co-branded tablet that they called the first full-featured Android tablet optimized for reading.
The $179 Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 Nook, based on Samsung’s recently launched 7-inch Tab 4, is available in more than 660 B&N bookstores and online at BN.com and Nook.com. The price is after $20 instant rebate and includes more than $200 in free Nook Store content, including books, TV shows and magazines.
The tablet offers what B&N called a “bookstore-like browsing experience” to find books.
Like its two Nook tablet predecessors, the new tablet accesses both the Nook Apps store and the Google Play store, a Samsung spokesperson said.
The book retailer, which did not introduce new tablets for last year’s fourth-quarter selling season, teamed up with Samsung this year to reduce costs associated with developing and producing its own Nook tablets. The decision was part of the bookseller’s efforts to rationalize its Nook e-book and e-reader/tablet business by eliminating the costs associated with designing and manufacturing its own tablets, B&N previously said.
B&N said it would continue to support all Nook devices and will continue to offer its Nook GlowLight e-reader.
The 8GB tablet is available in both white and black with all of the hardware specs of the Samsung Galaxy Tab 4, including HD display. It’s lighter at 9.74 ounces and thinner at 0.35 inches than any previous color Nook tablet, and it will be the first Nook tablet with built-in front (1.3-megapixel) and rear (3-megapixel) cameras for photos taking and video chats.
Other hardware specs include 1,280 by 800 WXGA display, 1.2GHz quad-core processor, 1.5GB RAM, Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n, Wi-Fi Direct, Bluetooth 4.0, GPS and GLONASS navigation, 3-megapixel main camera, 1.3-megapixel front camera, 720p/1080p video capture at 30 fps, stereo speakers and 6,800 mAh battery.
The device also features Google applications such as the Chrome web browser; built-in GPS capabilities for location-based apps; and Samsung Multi Window, which lets consumers use more than one app simultaneously and share content between open apps.
The tablet also downloads Nook Apps, which include games and productivity, news, and entertainment apps. Nook Video offers movies and TV shows for purchase or rental. The Nook Store contains more than 3 million books, including enhanced titles with special content and children’s picture books with interactive content.
The Nook Newsstand includes the top 100 best-selling U.S. magazines available via subscriptions or single-copy sale, plus newspapers and magazines from around the world. A visual table of contents lets readers jump directly to any article or section.
The $200 in free content available with the tablet’s purchase includes the best-selling e-books “Freakonomics,” “The Wanderer” and “I Am Number Four,” plus an episode each of TV shows “Veep,” “Hannibal” and “Orphan Black”. As part of the package, purchasers can choose up to four 14-day free trial subscriptions from a selection of 12 magazines and receive the previous 12 issues of each title at no cost. A $5 credit is available for purchasing books from the Nook Store.