Would you like streaming video with that e-book? As the streaming video field gets even more crowded, the last of the big bookstore chains is diving into that opportunity. Thanks to some help from Microsoft, Barnes & Noble, which controls a quarter of the e-book market, is expanding its e-book and tablet selling business by offering online video for its Nook e-reader and tablet users.
Nook users who want to stream video on their tablet or TVs can do so by going through their online store, which would give them the HBO and Starz catalog of shows like “Boss,” “Game of Thrones” and “True Blood.” In addition to HBO shows, Nook users can also watch feature films from Warner Brothers, Viacom and Sony Pictures. While Barnes & Noble doesn’t have a name for this new service just yet, it would be similar to Apple’s iTunes Store and Google’s Android Market.
This is significant because Barnes & Noble, a traditional book store since 1917, is trying to stay relevant in an increasingly digital entertainment market. They are trying to supplement their bread and butter book business by tapping into the increasingly popular medium of online video. Whether this will help them improve their business outlook in the long-term is unclear. However, by introducing their new online video store to Nook users, they’re challenging the supremacy of new media darlings like Netflix and Amazon Video.