Amazon and its highly anticipated Kindle Fire may be getting all of the attention these days, but that doesn’t mean rival Barnes and Noble has been resting on its laurels. It’s been suspected for quite some time that B&N has been working on its own tablet to compete with the Fire, the company has called a press event for Monday, and it looks like those suspicions have now been all but confirmed. SlachGear has obtained a set of leaked documents detailing the Nook maker’s aptly named Nook Tablet including its prospective cost and specs.
According to the documents, the 7-inch Nook Tablet will have a design similar to the Nook Color right down to the 1024 x 600 color touchscreen. Inside, the Nook Tablet will be packed with some seriously powerful guts, including a dual-core TI OMAP4 processor, 1GB of RAM, 16GB of internal storage, and a microDS card slot with support for an up to 32GB card.
The Nook Tablet will also be slightly smaller slimmer than the Nook Color (0.48 inches thick compared to 0.5 inches) and weigh a bit less (14.1 ounces compared to the Color’s 15.8). Battery life is estimated at eight hours with Wi-Fi off and four hours while playing video.
But hardware isn’t what this competition is all about. To be able to play with the Fire, the Nook Tablet has to be able to offer users a top notch multimedia experience. In the documents, Barnes & Noble touts the fact that users will have access to Netflix, Hulu Plus, Pandora, and other unnamed sources for media. Whether users will prefer those services to Amazon’ streaming video and Cloud Player services though remains to be seen.
One thing that stood out to us, however, was the unit’s suggested $249 price. If B&N hopes to draw customers away from the $199 Fire, they are going to have to find some way to convince customers to drop an extra $50 on the Nook Tablet.
It’s not all just about the Nook Tablet, though. The leaked documents also detail a new $99 Nook Simple Touch Reader that will feature an improved E-Ink display, as well as a new $199 Nook Color. The new Color is supposed to come packed with access to Hulu Plus, music services including Pandora and Grooveshark, and Nook-specific apps.
So when can you expect to get your hands on these new offerings? Well the documents say that an announcement is scheduled for Nov. 7, at which time customers can begin placing pre-orders. That definitely jives with the invitation we received earlier this week from B&N asking us to attend a press event on the same day dealing with the Nook line. Demo units are expected to hit stores the following week on Nov. 15, with units shipping to customers the next day.
We’ll keep you posted on any updates about the new Tablet and eReades. And don’t forget to check back on Nov. 7 for our coverage of Barnes & Noble’s press event.