Rumors have been swirling that electronic retailer Best Buy would be selling Barnes & Noble’s Nook ereader…and today those rumors came true: the companies have announced that the Nook ereader will be on sale at Best Buy beginning April 18 for $259.99.
“To date, we’ve limited Nook distribution to Barnes & Noble retail and online stores and the customer response to our eBook Reader has exceeded our expectations,” said Barnes & Noble executive ecommerce VP Kevin Frain, in a statement. “We’re thrilled to bring Nook, the BN eReader, and our digital content expertise to Best Buy and its loyal consumer electronics-focused audience as a perfect complement to the book-loving Barnes & Noble customer.”
As part of the deal, Best Buy will be featuring the free BN eReader on selected netbooks, notebooks, PCs, tablet devices, and smartphones, and Barnes & Noble will be a “preferred eBookstore solution” at Best Buy…which means the Nook and the Barnes & Noble eBookstore will get support from sales reps and Best Buy’s Geek Squad agents.
Barnes & Noble launched the Nook to much fanfare back in October, but production delays means the device only arrived at the bookseller’s stores in February 2010. The Best Buy partnership should be a good move to put the Nook in front of consumers as it struggles to gain market share against Amazon’s well-established Kindle eReader and the momentum behind Apple’s just-launched iPad, which features its own iBookstore. Best Buy also carries Sony Readers.