Barnes & Noble: Nook Color 2 to Launch November 7th

Posted by · October 31, 2011 6:34 pm

November is tablet month! After Amazon announced that it would begin shipping the Kindle Fire on November 15th, other tablet producers have been cutting in line with their new tablets, perhaps hoping to capitalize on the tablet hype that the Fire has ignited. Joining the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1, the T-Mobile Springboard, and the Kobo Vox—all of which are set to debut in November—Barnes & Noble, a close competitor of Amazon, has announced that there is “a very special announcement” coming on November 7th.

“What could it be?” Gizmodo writer Sam Biddle asks. “Nook Color.”

After rumors circulated last week that the popular book company would be launching the next generation of its Android-powered Nook Color, it seems the tablet’s creator has given consumers an affirmative nod with its announcement of an announcement to be given next Monday morning in New York.

Writing for CNET, David Carnoy speculates, “While the invite doesn’t refer to a specific device, it’s a pretty safe bet to assume it’s a new Nook Color.” “[T]hough,” Carnoy continues, “it’s unclear whether it will be called the Nook Color 2 or something else altogether.”

Assuming that the new tablet e-reader—whatever its name—will be targeting the Kindle Fire specifically, it’s probably safe to assume that it will come with an upgraded processor, screen, and other design features.

What remains to be seen—and arguably the most important unknown—is how competitively priced the new tablet will be. Priced at an impressive $199, the Kindle Fire is going to be a tough cost to beat, though it has been reported that Amazon is taking a loss for every tablet it sells. If the manufacturing cost of the new Nook is roughly the same as that of the Kindle Fire, it might be wise for Barnes & Noble to keep its price in the $230-$250 range in order to make a profit and not be forced to anger customers with a price hike in the future.

While the slightly higher price might make it less appealing when compared to the Kindle Fire, it should be able to justify the higher cost by offering more memory—expandable memory, that is—than the Fire does. Although the new Amazon tablet does come with the impressive Silk browser, Android App Store, and other helpful services, it does only have 6GB of usable memory and no memory expansion slot.

Then again, that might be why Amazon’s already working on the Kindle Fire’s second generation.