If you've preordered the Amazon Kindle Fire, Barnes & Noble hopes you're now having second thoughts.
That's the message of the just-announced $249 Nook Tablet, the successor to 2010's Nook Color (which remains on the market for $199). The new 7-inch color tablet equals many of the basic specs of the Kindle Fire, but justifies its $50 price premium over Amazon.com's model by offering several notable upgrades.
The Nook Tablet will offer more than twice the storage and twice the RAM of the Fire; it's got an SD expansion slot for even more storage capacity (which the Fire lacks), up to 32GB; and Barnes & Noble is already touting Netflix, Hulu Plus, and Pandora apps which will come included on the device from the start (Amazon's list of third-party Fire apps remains undisclosed). Those features are in addition to the existing assortment of apps and features already available on the Nook Color (and on deck for the Kindle Fire)--e-mail and a Flash-enabled Web browser, in addition to a fully stocked e-book store and magazine and newspaper newsstand.
In short, the Nook Tablet immediately becomes the first real challenger to the Kindle Fire in the emerging bargain tablet arena. Here's why.… Read more