Feeds

Barnes & Noble's Nook sales take a long walk off a very short pier

People won't buy the ebooks if they aren't buying the readers

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

Barnes & Noble's ebook efforts continue to falter, with the company's struggling digital division reporting disappointing revenues as it lurches into what could prove to be a difficult holiday season.

The Nook division reported total revenues of $109m for the second quarter of its fiscal 2014, a 32.2 per cent decrease from the same period a year ago. It was an even worse showing than its first quarter, when its revenues were down 20.2 per cent.

Sales of Nook ebooks, magazines, and newspapers totaled $57m for the three months ending on October 26, which was 21.2 per cent less than the division brought in during last year's second quarter.

At least part of the decline, the company said, was due to lower average sale prices for digital media. Doubtless the guilty verdict leveled against Apple in the recent ebook price fixing scandal had something to do with that.

But slow sales of Nook devices played an even bigger role in the division's slump. Revenues from Nook tablets, e-readers, and accessories were down 41.3 per cent since the year-ago quarter, with sales totaling just $51m.

That's worrying news for B&N, which launched its newest e-ink reading device in October after a series of costly missteps into the color tablet market.

Nook tablets managed to win just 1.9 per cent market share during the 2012 holiday season, while rivals Apple, Samsung, and Amazon each scored in the double digits. B&N finally pulled the plug on its color devices in June, and then-CEO William Lynch was shown the door shortly after.

At the time, newly appointed Nook division CEO Michael Huseby said that B&N was not going to abandon its hardware business, but that in the short term it would concentrate on delivering new e-ink devices (of which the recently launched Nook GlowLight is the first).

Yet B&N faces stiff competition in that category, too, from such rivals as Kobo and Amazon. The latter is rumored to be launching a new Kindle e-ink device with a 300dpi screen soon, which would once again surpass the most recent Nook offering in performance and features.

Still, if the Nook division's future looks bleak, its figures did improve in at least one sense this quarter. Ignoring the effects of interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization, Nook's losses for Q2 of 2014 actually shrunk by $6.2m compared to the year-ago quarter, which the company attributes to cost-cutting and reduced discounts on its hardware.

In other words, Nook "only" lost $45.2m this quarter on revenues of $108.7m. Call that the bright side, if you will. ®

Remote control for virtualized desktops

More from The Register

next story
Bladerunner sequel might actually be good. Harrison Ford is in it
Go ahead, you're all clear, kid... Sorry, wrong film
Euro Parliament VOTES to BREAK UP GOOGLE. Er, OK then
It CANNA do it, captain.They DON'T have the POWER!
Musicians sue UK.gov over 'zero pay' copyright fix
Everyone else in Europe compensates us - why can't you?
I'll be back (and forward): Hollywood's time travel tribulations
Quick, call the Time Cops to sort out this paradox!
Megaupload overlord Kim Dotcom: The US HAS RADICALISED ME!
Now my lawyers have bailed 'cos I'm 'OFFICIALLY' BROKE
Forget Hillary, HP's ex CARLY FIORINA 'wants to be next US Prez'
Former CEO has political ambitions again, according to Washington DC sources
prev story

Whitepapers

10 ways wire data helps conquer IT complexity
IT teams can automatically detect problems across the IT environment, spot data theft, select unique pieces of transaction payloads to send to a data source, and more.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
How to determine if cloud backup is right for your servers
Two key factors, technical feasibility and TCO economics, that backup and IT operations managers should consider when assessing cloud backup.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence
Download Choosing a Cloud Hosting Provider with Confidence to learn more about cloud computing - the new opportunities and new security challenges.