Marvel Announces Barnes & Noble Nook Deal For Digital Comics


This morning, editorial director of, Ryan Penagos, live tweeted from Barnes & Noble’s NOOK event in New York City. Why was the Marvel employee in attendance? In addition to revealing their new Nook tablet, Barnes & Noble announced they would soon be carrying Marvel digital comics on the device in their first-ever electronic pairing with the bookseller.

The news adds to the interesting tale that’s been unfolding between the bookseller and the comic book world. Last month, Barnes & Noble decided to pull all DC Comics books from their physical store shelves after the publisher made an exclusive deal with for their new Kindle Fire e-reader. Jaime Carey, chief merchant of B&N, gave this statement at the time, “regardless of the publisher, we will not stock physical books in our stores if we are not offered the available digital format…To sell and promote the physical book in our store showrooms, and not have the eBook available for sale would undermine our promise to Barnes & Noble customers to make available any book, anywhere, anytime.”

DC later felt the need to clarify that their digital releases would not be exclusive to just one e-reader but available through the Kindle app on other devices besides the Fire. B&N then made an interesting move by inking a deal with UK publisher 2000 AD/Rebellion for a slew of old Alan Moore stories.

Penagos tweeted the news about Marvel comics coming to the NOOK and then continued filling his 1.3 million followers in about the new product and details about the deal. Here’s a breakdown:

  • NOOK Comics will have a lot of Marvel support and content and the library will continue to grow.
  • It will have the largest collection of Marvel graphic novels than any other tablet on the market.
  • The NOOK is in HD and weighs under a pound. It also has wifi and can do 9 hours of video on a single charge. It will have 16 GB of internal storage and support for up to 32 GB SD cards and 7 times more memory capacity than the Kindle Fire.
  • The tablet supports 1080p video, Netflix, Hulu Plus and offer free cloud storage.

The NOOK Tablet will cost $250 and be available next week online and in stores soon. B&N’s NOOK Color will now be $199 with new enhancements and also have Marvel comics. Penagos also gave us a look at the tablet up close via his tumblr, showing off Ultimate Spider-Man #1.

Skitch Commentary: I am not a huge fan of exclusive deals, but I love that the digital market is getting so much attention. One of the other pictures I have seen of this Nook Tablet showed Archie comics, so I wonder if this is through Comixology. I can’t wait to see the list of titles available on the Nook Tablet. DC’s deal with Kindle featured 100 Graphic Novels, so I would hope this has a comparable number.

Personally, I have my Toshiba Thrive and am very happy with it (though I am likely going to buy a Kindle Fire for my wife for her birthday), so I hope this exclusive deals are temporary. I have been pushing for digital trades for a while now, and I am glad that Marvel and DC are finally taking advantage.

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