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Nook Color may have hit 3m units, 50% of tablets in US

updated 08:50 am EDT, Mon March 28, 2011

Barnes and Noble said shipped 3m Nook Colors

Barnes & Noble may have had strong enough sales of the Nook Color to make itself an unintentional iPad rival, suppliers argued on Monday. The company has reportedly shipped three million since it launched the fall, one million of which shipped in the last few weeks of the year. Demand was reportedly such that it hit 600,000 to 700,000 of the LCD e-readers each month in January and February, Digitimes said.

The share would give it about 50 percent of the "iPad-like" market, the tipsters said, although they didn't say whether this included Apple or deliberately focused on all non-Apple tablets. Officially, Apple shipped about 7.5 million iPads worldwide in the fall, but it hasn't said how many of these were native to the US.

Barnes & Noble hasn't ever officially reported Nook Color sales but did say it was its top-selling product during the holidays.

Reasons for the popularity weren't given out. The Android device deliberately shies away from being a true tablet with a lack of support for easily available third-party apps and an interface that focuses on reading. Its $249 price has made it half as expensive as an iPad, however, and enthusiasts have taken to unofficial hacks to get full-fledged Android onboard.

The company has taken to partly acknowledging the tablet-like role and is planning an Android 2.2 upgrade in April that will add e-mail, support for some apps, and Flash support on the web.

By Electronista Staff
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  1. hayesk

    Professional Poster

    Joined: Sep 1999



    Nook isn't a tablet. It's an eReader. Sure it can be hacked to be a tablet, but a pretty underpowered one. I don't think very many people who want a full-featured tablet is going to consider a Nook.

  1. Jonathan-Tanya

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Oct 2004


    it's not underpowered, that's the point

    an 800mhz A8 CPU is flash capable, and far superior to phones at that price, far superior to other
    tablets at that price.

    In fact, they did what I've been saying a hit android tablet needs - 7" size, lower price than the iPad, sufficient cpu power (to at least be flash capable and browse the web OK).

    Everyone else kept dancing around the magic formula with underpowered junk, or over priced, or requiring a 3g contract - only B&N went straight at it- almost.

    Except they marketed the whole thing as an ebook reader.

    They open this up and they can increase sales even further.

  1. Unblowupable5

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jul 2007


    Not a tablet...

    But a heck of a lot closer to one than a traditional e-reader. The iPad absolutely blows the doors off this thing from a hardware/software perspective, but for those who don't need all of the bells and whistles, this fits the bill nicely. I'm considering getting one primarily to be an e-reader, but the fact that you can run a few game apps check e-mail and surf the web is icing on the cake. That said, I'm going into it knowing that it's not going to keep up with a real tablet. It's half the price for a reason...

  1. drbenru

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jan 2007


    For some it's just enough...

    When I first found out about it I almost bought one. I love my iPad unfortunately for me my daughter loves it too. I found the features of the Nook to be just enough for what I needed for my daughter plus they announced they would have these really cool interactive children's ebooks. They also had this great extended warranty for like 40 bucks. It even covered accidental damage to the screen which was my main concern with my daughter. Unfortunately for me my wife started buying learning games for my daughter, and when she discovered youtube's extensive cartoon collection I was forced to buy another iPad, luckily I held out long enough to get an iPad2.

    The nook deserves to be considered a hit in its own right. Unlike the many iPad-killer wannabes this little tablet shaped e-reader, leveraged Android, customized it to give its users just the features it needed. Rather than focus on what Apple is doing they focused on what they wanted to sell, and provided a few well placed features. Kind of like what apple did with the original iPhone, back when no developer kit, no apps, nothing but a simple basic smartphone. Let's hope market pressure doesn't cause B&N to ruin it.

  1. jtnave23

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Mar 2011


    Take it from someone who has one...

    I can understand the skeptics, but from someone who has a NC (and used other various Android knockoff tablets) I can tell you it's the best Android device to hack. I've tried both Froyo and Honeycomb and both worked above and beyond all others around the Nook's price range. The cool part is you can run these on an SD card and when you're done, take it out and you'll be back to the stock OS. I usually keep it there since I've rooted it and have the Market installed in the stock OS. It's not flawless, but it's a great device. Our iPad is still the first option, but my wife loves the smaller form factor when reading and using the common websites/apps.

  1. xmlaroux

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Oct 2010


    @All who say its not much

    You guys have no idea. It is an AWESOME Tablet. To hack it is as easy as putting in an SD card and following a few instructions. I've hacked 8 so far, and everyone that has one loves it. The screen is great. As good as an iPad or 2? Nope. As fast as an iPad or 2? Nope. Cost near as much? NOPE!

    Does it have the full Android market? Nope, about 80% or so.

    Can it play all the greatest Android games? Yep!
    Angry Birds? Yep
    Email? Yep
    Web? Yep
    Flash? Yep(Advanced hacking)
    E-Reader? Yep
    Great Battery life? Yep
    Lighter than an iPad? Yep
    Easier to carry around than an iPad? Yep
    Contract to buy? NOPE

    EVERYONE I know absolutely loves it.. and loves the price.

    iPads are great devices, so is the Nook. The FIRST and best Android Tablet for the price.

    Don't let B&N fool you. They know over 1/3 are hacking the damn thing for a full tablet. That is fine with them. A Nook Color 2, lighter, faster, and more memory... same $300 out the door would just continue to impress. Hopefully by X-Mas this year I get to buy my 3rd Nook Color...

    $250 is a GREAT Price Point.. Not everyone can pay $600 after tax and extras for a tablet toy.

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