Barnes & Noble is getting out of the color tablet business (mostly). It announced Tuesday that it will cease production of its color Nook tablets -- although it plans to allow third parties to produce them, under pending licensing deals.
Could this be a punt to
Even the experts don't know. "One thing still not clear from the announcement today: How Microsoft and U.K. publisher Pearson are looking at the Nook business," the
In a report on earnings, Barnes & Noble blamed its unsold inventory of Nooks, in large part, for losses of nearly $155 million for fiscal year 2013.
Although there were drops in sales of the Nook across the board, it's solely the color tablets that Barnes & Noble is giving up. It will continue to develop its dedicated e-readers, including the Simple Touch and Glowlight, which may appear as devices co-branded with a manufacturer.
"We are 100% not exiting the device business," William Lynch, chief executive of Barnes & Noble, insisted on a conference call Tuesday.