Barnes & Noble Live Blog: The Nook Tablet

We are live at the Union Square Barnes & Noble in New York City today to live blog a Barnes & Noble press event. On Friday, news that the company will release a new Nook Tablet leaked early, but we’ll be standing by live to confirm the rumors and to give you the details as they unfold.

10:00am B&N CEO William Lynch takes the stage and says that 27% of eBooks sold are from Barnes & Noble.

10:03 He just introduced the Nook Tablet, a high def Nook. Video is rolling.

10:04 16 GB of memory and weighs under a pound.

10:07 9 hours of video, five full length HD movies on a single charge 11.5 hours of reading time. Supports videos at 1080p. Includes Netflix, and Hulu Plus access.

10:08 Netflix recommendations are pushed to the front of device next to book and magazine recommendations.

10:09  More selling points: Pandora music streaming. Kids books, newsstand, graphic novels, Marvel Comics partnerships.

10:10 Read and Record is a new tool so that parents can record a playback track of themselves reading a story to kids that can play back digitally.

10:12 The new ePUB has pinch and zoom features.

10:13 There is an app store.

10:14 Nook Cloud has lots of storage.

10:15 Nook-trained sellers are in stores they call it the “always free in-store support,” Lynch says it is a differentiator.

10:16 Here comes the Kindle Fire, Nook Tablet comparisons. According to Lynch, Nook Tablet has the first display without an air gap. Now he is comparing the available memory, “Nook Tablet offers 7x more storage capacity than Kindle Fire.” Nook Tablet is smaller. It’s faster and has in-store support.

10:19 It is $249. It is on presale today. It will arrive in stores end of next week and in homes from online orders next week. To support the launch, they have launched the biggest marketing campaign to date starring Jane Lynch.

10: 21 Jamie Iannone is on stage. The Nook Color is now $199, he says. And today it has a new update with 100 enhancements.

10:22 It will have all of the new content for the Nook Tablet.

10:23 It now has social sharing functionality and expandable memory.

10:24 Apps, email, music streaming from partners like Pandora.

10:25 Nook Simple Touch has a new page turn tool. Page turns at 450 milliseconds, 25% faster than before. It now includes Best-Text, a tool that makes the font render in sharper image. 2 months of reading on a single charge, even at an hour a day.

10:26 The Nook Simple Touch is now $99. He’s comparing it to Kindle and boasting about the time of reading, and the fact that they have already optimized the screen.

10:27 There are no ads.

10:28 B&N will gift wrap the device for free in stores.

10:29 Lynch is back on stage summarizing the Nook line of products. Now it’s time for Q&A.

10:52 Sorry we had technical difficulties. Here is a roundup of the Q&A. The device will run Android Gingerbread. B&N is focused on the book and magazine business, not the movie business despite selling DVDs in the past.