Barnes & Noble's Nook readers are top notch -- there's no argument about that. The application part of that equation however, is pretty messy. The web app is integrated into the B&N site and keeps the UI clean and minimal. The Mac and PC clients on the other hand go with forest green highlights, grays and a busy sidebar for navigation, while the Android and iOS apps get bright blues and lots of gradients. And lets not even bring the Nook Tablet and Color into this. Basically, they're all completely different, confusing and rather poorly designed. The company's new Windows 8 app on the other hand appears to take cues from the Paper interface of the Nook HD which, while not exactly stunning, is certainly a huge step in the right direction. It also brings a certain amount of consistency to the ecosystem across platforms, something that's been sorely missing. The current version is a little basic, as it appears the app lacks notation, look up and social sharing features, but it will let you pin content to your Start Screen as a live tile. Download it now at the source and check out the PR after the break.
Introducing NOOK® for Windows 8
Free Reading App Offers Seamless Access to Vast Selection of Digital Books, Magazines, Newspapers and Comics on Windows 8
First Digital Product from Barnes & Noble's New NOOK Media Subsidiary, Free App Now Available for Download
NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--NOOK Media LLC, a subsidiary of Barnes & Noble, Inc. (NYSE: BKS), a leading retailer of content, digital media and educational products, today announced the highly anticipated NOOK for Windows 8 app, available to Windows 8 PC and tablet customers through the Windows Store. The free app combines NOOK's award-winning reading experience with shopping directly from the app, so customers can discover, explore and read a massive selection of books, magazines, newspapers and comics from any Windows 8 tablet or PC. With live tiles, NOOK for Windows 8 customers can easily get right back to their last read title, be alerted to the arrival of new issues of their magazines and newspapers, or even pin a favorite book or magazine to the Windows 8 Start screen. NOOK for Windows 8 includes NOOK's signature new "paper" user interface and all-new shopping experiences including innovative NOOK Channels™.
"Our intent was to create a great digital reading and content buying experience for millions of users on Windows 8, and by working closely with Microsoft on the app we've accomplished that."
"This new NOOK for Windows 8 reading app is the first digital product launch under the recently announced strategic partnership between Microsoft and Barnes & Noble," says Jamie Iannone, President of Digital Products at NOOK Media LLC. "Our intent was to create a great digital reading and content buying experience for millions of users on Windows 8, and by working closely with Microsoft on the app we've accomplished that."
"NOOK delivers a comprehensive digital reading experience in a Windows Store app. Barnes & Noble took advantage of the new Windows user interface to combine an immersive reading experience with the ability to easily browse, search and purchase from their extensive content catalog. As consumers continue to embrace digital reading, the NOOK app is a strong addition to the Windows 8 experience," says John Richards, senior director of Windows App Marketing for Microsoft Corp.
A Growing and Diverse Digital Catalog: The fully integrated NOOK Store™ offers NOOK for Windows 8 customers access to one of the world's largest digital content collections featuring:
More than 3 million books including bestsellers, new releases, classics and more
The largest digital collection of the top 100 bestselling magazines available for both digital subscriptions and single copy sale, plus a large selection of leading daily and weekly newspapers
A vast and growing collection of full-color comics, graphic novels and kids' comics
Avid readers can sample NOOK Books™ for free and download content virtually instantly without ever leaving the NOOK for Windows 8 app.
Award-Winning Digital Reading Experience: Consistent with the excellent digital reading experience found on NOOK tablets and Readers, NOOK for Windows 8 customers will enjoy a multitude of tools for both reading and finding their next great read. Customers can easily personalize the reading experience by choosing from a selection of crystal-clear and razor-sharp fonts available in various styles and sizes, quickly navigate to different pages or chapters, add bookmarks, and more.
Easy to Use Interface: Offering intuitive digital reading and content discovery, NOOK for Windows 8 is NOOK's first free Reading app to be designed with a "paper" interface created to minimize distractions and encourage deep content interaction and enjoyment. Reflecting a set of books and magazines laid out on the coffee table at home, the core layout of each customer's "Daily Shelf" lets them easily find their latest read or a new issue of their favorite magazine or newspaper. Customers can easily navigate through this interface on a wide range of Windows 8 tablets using the fast and fluid Windows 8 touch experience.
Seamless Shopping and Reading: Elevating the shopping experience to new digital heights, NOOK for Windows 8 customers can browse over 3 million books, magazines, and newspapers through NOOK's expansive digital content catalog, learn more about the book (including details and reviews) right from within the app, and tap to purchase and begin reading in seconds. And because the shopping experience is integrated into the app, there's no need to launch an external browser or visit a Web page to download or complete a purchase.
Unparalleled, Curated Recommendations: NOOK for Windows 8 also delivers a new level of personal shopping to the browsing and reading experience through new NOOK Channels™, a pioneering recommendation system that combines the knowledge of Barnes & Noble's booksellers with advanced algorithmic technology to create a curated discovery experience targeted specifically to each individual's interests and sensibilities. Generating a rich stream of content that includes everything from the latest bestsellers as well as backlist gems and offbeat treasures, customers can browse and shop Channels that will expand their passions for the authors, characters and subjects they love, from Paranormal Romance, War Stories, and Books to Talk About to Jane Austen & Heirs, The New Classics, History by Plot and Books Every Kid Should Know.
Updates Streamed Instantly to the Start Screen: NOOK for Windows 8 features live tile image integration that delivers real-time updates right on the device's Start screen, including the customer's current read, specific progress within a book or magazine, latest periodicals or pre-ordered titles recently delivered to customers' Library, and more.
Access Reading Content Anywhere: Like all free NOOK Reading apps, purchased content is safely stored through NOOK® Cloud, making it easy for customers to access digital books, magazines and more wherever they go. Using NOOK Sync™ technology, NOOK for Windows 8 automatically syncs a customer's last page read across all of their devices. Start reading a magazine on a Windows 8 PC or tablet and seamlessly dive back in on a NOOK device or smartphone to keep reading virtually anytime, anywhere – all without losing the page.
NOOK for Windows 8 is now available to download for free in the Windows Store on all Windows 8 PCs and tablets. Customers can learn more about NOOK for Windows 8 at www.nook.com/nookforwindows8.