July 30, 2010, 4:49 PM

Nook gets its own nook in stores

Barnes & Noble launches in-store boutiques for the e-reader hardware.

Lead Photo

The online sale of e-books is a rapidly growing segment of Barnes & Noble Inc.’s business. And on the first anniversary of its entry into the e-books market, the retailer is making a greater commitment to e-books and its popular Nook e-reader—in stores.

Barnes & Noble, No. 42 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide, has shifted its display of Nook e-readers in-store to 1,000-square-foot special areas of stores dubbed Nook Boutiques. There customers can try the e-reader hardware, wirelessly download e-books, preview sections of new e-books, watch video demonstrations and peruse more than 100 Nook accessories.

“We entered the e-book market a year ago confident our bookstores would be a huge competitive asset, and a year later, the role of our retail channel in the success of Nook and e-books, and the popularity of our in-store e-reading features, have crystallized this advantage,” says William J. Lynch, CEO. “The Nook Boutique concept was designed to ensure we’re maximizing the growth potential for all channels through our bookstores, which will continue to focus on delivering customers the joy, discovery and exploration of reading in a comfortable, community setting.”

The Nook Wi-Fi sells for $149; the Nook 3G sells for $199. Consumers can also read their Nook e-books via apps on the iPad, on iPhone, iPod Touch, BlackBerry, Android and HTC HD2 smartphones, as well as on PC and Mac computers.

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