Competition usually giveth, but sometimes it taketh away too. All Things D is reporting today that Kno, the company that aimed to deliver a most bodacious dual-screen tablet to students, is investigating the possibility of selling off its hardware venture and focusing exclusively on its software offering. Internal sources claim the "quicker-than-expected" move into tablets by big electronics makers has made the environment tougher for Kno, which is now said to be negotiating with a pair of companies about offloading its slate-selling business. Apparently, just a few hundred pre-orders of the Kno were fulfilled before the company stopped shipping them recently, which could be an indication that a deal may be close. We can only guess what a purchaser would want to do with the Kno tablet designs, but as for the company itself, it'll look to the iPad and Android-based tablets for its new market of opportunity -- no point in wasting all those textbook distribution partnerships.

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Kno looking to sell off ambitious tablet hardware business, focus on software instead