Though it might seem like the obvious next step in line for Microsoft to push Windows 8 to the Nook hardware after they invested millions into Barnes & Noble’s newly formed NewCo for the hardware and subsequent apps, it’s simply not in the cards that tablet. With Barnes & Noble having already invested heavily in the idea that their bookstore and app environment works with Android – not exactly like Google would like it, but still – they’re not likely to move with Windows 8 for future ereaders any time soon. Instead it’s the apps we’ll be seeing integrated for Nook, the Barnes & Noble library of content, and Windows 8-toting hardware galore.
In a statement released this week on their new joint venture, Microsoft and Barnes & Noble noted how “one of the first benefits for customers will be a Nook application for Windows 8.” This will likely be just one element here in this larger equation, but it’s certainly a giant nugget where the rest is set to be subsidiary bonuses. It’s Apple that Microsoft is competing with here, not Android. Because of the fact that Apple has a strong content library on their site via iTunes, Microsoft must move forward with their own set of solutions (old and new) to get Windows 8 on board with vertical integration with downloadable content of all kinds.
Because of this, Barnes & Noble will hand the keys to their own book library to Microsoft and their Windows 8 PCs, tablets, notebooks, and hybrid devices. This Barnes & Noble integration will allow Microsoft to compete not only with Apple, but with Amazon as well. NewCo will continue to create Nook devices running Android and Microsoft will profit from cash earned on that hardware. A two-pronged approach is what Microsoft is after here, not just Windows 8 on Barnes & Noble hardware.
Have a peek at our timeline below for this joint venture and see for yourself where it’s headed!