The Nook and the Kindle will both have new models this Spring or Summer if the rumor mill is correct. According to some, Amazon is working on a new nine inch version and Barnes & Noble (B&N) is working on a new device of its own while the tablet that both are trying to compete with, the Apple iPad will be announcing it’s newest iteration next month.
The New York Times alluded to a new B&N Nook that will be coming out later this year. According to the article, a fifth device is currently being finalized for release this Spring. The company is not conceding ground to either Amazon or Apple and is in fact expanding its Nook division to a 208,000 plus or minus square feet of space. The San Jose/Silicon Valley Business Journal reported that the division will be moving in to space in the Stanford Research Park. The specifics of the new device – size, processor, type of screen and operating system have not been announced. Presumably it will continue to be based on some version of Android.
Specifics about the upcoming new edition to Kindle are a little more concrete as far as the rumor mill goes. According to CNET the latest rumors of the new Kindle are that it will have a nine inch screen which puts it between the Kindle Fire’s seven inch screen and the iPad’s 10.1 inch screen. Again specifics like operating system, type of screen and type of processor are still rather vague. Amazon has created its own version of Android that is a closed system so presumably, it will continue along those lines. The current base for the Kindle is Android 2.2. Most Android tablets are using some version of Android 3, called Honeycomb. Amazon could modify Honeycomb to give the new device a spiffier faster operating system and interface while continuing to keep it proprietary.
According to ComputerWorld’s IT Blogwatch, Apple’s new iPad 3 looks to be coming out soon. The rumors range from later this month to March for an announcement/release date. So far the rumors call for a new Retina Display, faster processor, better camera, and possibly multiple sizes. One of the rumors states that Apple may produce a seven inch version to compete head to head with the Nook and Kindle.
As with all of these rumors, you have to take them with a grain of salt or even a whole salt shakers worth. Apple rumors are notorious for being inaccurate. We can pretty much bet on a new device from B&N as well as some refreshes for older units and the same goes for Amazon. Both companies are betting heavily on their eReader/tablet divisions to continue growing.