It will be easier than ever this holiday season to find an eBook reader with Walmart announcing that it would begin offering the Barnes & Noble Nook and the Kobo eBook readers in stores alongside the Apple iPad and Sony eBook readers. Walmart joins many other retailers such as Target and Best Buy in focusing on eBook readers as hot holiday gifts and Black Friday doorbusters.
Walmart plans to display the eBook readers in the consumer electronics section, and according to its release, many stores will feature a "NOOK-branded eReading area" where shoppers can try it out to see how they like reading on a screen. The Nook comes in a Wi-Fi only model for $149 and a 3G model for $199.
Walmart will also be stocking the Wi-Fi-only Kobo reader, which retails for $139 and has a quilted back for a more comfortable reading experience. It's not clear if Walmart will have a demo unit of the Kobo, or the other eReaders it carries, out for consumers to compare. The Amazon Kindle, $139 Wi-Fi and $189 3G, will not be carried by Walmart.
The news comes alongside rumors that Barnes & Noble will launch a new color Nook eReader that will reportedly use a 7" color screen running Android and retail for $250.
Target is betting big on eBooks as well. It plans to carry the Apple iPad, which can read eBooks from many sources including Amazon and iBooks, and various Sony eBook Readers. Best Buy is also stocking the iPad and Amazon Kindle in stores alongside other eReaders. If you are on the fence about eBook readers, this is a perfect opportunity to go in and check out the various types of screens and technology.
We expect to see Black Friday deals on eBook readers at these retailers in the form of eBook bundles or eBookstore credits with the purchase of select readers.
Nook and Kobo eReaders come to Walmart; color Nook may come soon