Barnes and Noble Fired Entire Nook Hardware Engineering Staff
via John Gruber. Jay Yarow, Business Insider:
The Nook was its answer to the Amazon’s Kindle. Barnes & Noble tried making a Nook e-reader, and a Nook tablet that competed with the iPad, and the Kindle Fire. It was a bold, and aggressive attempt to fend off the rise of Internet companies that were destroying booksellers.
Internet companies that were destroying booksellers. Yarow’s wording is interesting in that Amazon is a bookseller; Amazon also happens to be an Internet company. And Amazon is hardly being destroyed. I guess Yarow was referring more to Apple, an Internet company destroying booksellers like Barnes and Noble. I don’t think the success of Internet booksellers equals the demise of physical booksellers. I miss my local Barnes and Noble bookstore. My kids miss it too. Amazon hasn’t replaced the experience of going to a B&N bookstore. Nothing has.
I can’t stop wondering: What if Barnes and Noble focused only on developing a fantastic iPad app that allowed downloading cheap/free digital versions of the physical books you bought at the brick and mortar stores? And what if the B&N iPad app allowed unlimited free browsing of e-books when you’re connected to WiFi at a B&N brick and mortar store? Just like with real books. Groupon-like discounts at physical locations? Free use of iPads — tethered and limited to the B&N iPad app — on WiFi at B&N stores? Sign-able e-books? E-book signings at B&N stores? A significantly discounted used book section where you can buy and sell used books? There are so many possibilities…