Barnes and Noble is the largest bookstore chain in the United States and the business has been in a state of utter upheaval for the past seven years. The company had a revolving door of five different CEOs, until it was sold to Elliot, which is a hedge fund. They also own Waterstones, which are the UK’s largest booksellers. Since James Daunt took over as CEO of both companies, things have started to change. New frameworks have been installed at the highest levels, to help chart a new direction. The first phase was to close underperforming stores, mainly in shopping centers, and renovate existing stores. The Nook department has a new senior director and vice president and it looks like they’re working on a secret project called the Nook Glowlight 4. This new e-reader will be released in the first week of December and recently passed FCC certification. .
What’s interesting about the FCC app is that it was issued by Nook Digital, not by Netronix, which has issued them in the past. The documents were signed by Carlo Pochintesta, who is the COO of the entire Nook division. He was hired in 2019 and had 25 years of experience in managing IT services in various companies. The FCC application is under embargo, so all photos and technical specifications will be released at a later date.
Barns and Noble Nook Glowlight 4 model number is BNRV1100. The screen size is currently unknown, but previous Glowlight series e-reders were traditionally six inches. What we do know is that it will have 32GB internal storage, this device uses KINGSTON EMMC32G TX29GA8A. In the retail package, there will be an Asus EXA1205UA, which is a USB-C to USB-A cable. So the new Nook will finally have USB-C. It will be powered by an Eve Energy PR-284983N, which is a lithium-ion battery. Depending on the model number, it will deliver 1400mAh, so use should be a good 3-4 weeks, before needing to recharge. There is also Bluetooth 5.1 and WIFI 802.11b and 802.11g / n.
Why have Barnes and Noble waited so long to release a new Nook when both Amazon and Kobo released new models in late October and early November. This is directly attributed to EPD and the shortage of precious metals in China. I know all of these companies were dealing with one manufacturer to make the devices and source all of the components. This year almost everyone had to get their own components, causing big delays. Smaller brands like Remarkable, Fujitsu, Supernote, and Boyue have been out of stock for months, including accessories. B&N is still a major player so they can afford to pay higher fees to secure more EPD panels as E INK charges more per panel. It is therefore highly likely that they are in abundance, sold in 600 stores and online.
Currently, Barnes and Noble has signage in a number of its bookstores, advertising the new Nook, but all of the store’s employees currently have no idea. We shouldn’t have to wait too long until full specs are released. Keep your browsers locked on Good e-Reader for more Nook news.
Michael Kozlowski has been writing about audiobooks and e-readers for twelve years. His articles have been picked up by major and local news sources and websites such as CBC, CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post, and The New York Times. He lives in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.