Nook Color gets Froyo update and app store

B&N also launches developer program for Nook apps

Barnes & Noble announced a major update to its Nook Color tablet Monday that includes access to a new app store, including an email app for organizing Web mail accounts. The upgrade also has Android 2.2 (Froyo) with Adobe Flash Player for video viewing.

Also, important to developers, Barnes & Noble announced a Nook Developer program for building Nook apps.

With these enhancements, the 7-in., Wi-Fi-ready Nook Color tablet, with a price tag of $249, "presents the best value of any tablet on the market," at about half the cost of other popular tablets, Barnes and Noble CEO William Lynch said in making the announcement. The Nook Color first went on sale Nov. 19.

By comparison, the popular Apple 9.7-in. iPad 2 starts at $499. But the iPad 2 has a tremendous head start in the market over the enhanced Nook Color and recent entries such as the BlackBerry PlayBook. IPad 2 also has access to many more applications -- about 65,000 compared to about 125 from Nook apps so far.

"The Nook Color with its new Froyo upgrade is not an iPad -- not even close," wrote Gartner analyst Allen Weiner in a blog posted Monday, after trying out the device with the new version's 1.2 enhancements.

"But those who are looking for a great cross-media reading device with some nice new multimedia bells and whistles, it remains a go-to device," Weiner said.

Weiner said the best things about the improved Nook Color "are all reading-related." He said one of the better new features is a beta version of Nook Friends, a social app for sharing, buying and recommending books.

Weiner was also unsure how many developers would build apps for the Nook Apps app store.

The new features come in the Nook Color version 1.2 upgrade that is available free today online for manual download or over-the-air via Wi-Fi starting next week.

Barnes & Noble is also starting a new advertising campaign for the Nook Color that was developed by the Mullen advertising agency to include broadcast, print and online ads.

Matt Hamblen covers mobile and wireless, smartphones and other handhelds, and wireless networking for Computerworld. Follow Matt on Twitter at @matthamblen or subscribe to Matt's RSS feed. His e-mail address is mhamblen@computerworld.com.

Read more about mobile and wireless in Computerworld's Mobile and Wireless Topic Center.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags mobileinternetApplesoftwareapplicationshardwaretelecommunicatione-commercehardware systemse-businessBarnes & NobleMobile operating systemsMobile and WirelessMobile Apps and ServicesMobile OSes

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Matt Hamblen

Computerworld (US)
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?