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Samsung to make co-branded tablet with Barnes & Noble

Samsung unveiled plans to produce a co-branded tablet computer with US bookseller Barnes & Noble, which has struggled with its Nook line of devices.

NEW YORK: Samsung unveiled plans on Thursday to produce a co-branded tablet computer with US bookseller Barnes & Noble (B&N), which has struggled with its Nook line of devices.

The two firms said in a statement they would produce Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 Nook tablets "with easy access to Barnes & Noble's expansive digital collection of more than three million books, leading magazines and newspapers."

"We are very excited and proud to partner with Samsung, a world-class technology and tablet leader, to create customized co-branded devices featuring our valuable Nook reading experience and digital content catalogue for Barnes & Noble customers nationwide," said B&N chief executive Michael Huseby.

"Standing behind these great new devices will be the power of our 40,000 Barnes & Noble booksellers combined with our deep bookselling and retail expertise to provide sales support and personalized in-store customer service."

In its most recent financial results, B&N posted a profit in its fiscal third quarter of US$63.2 million, compared to a net loss of US$3.7 million, in the prior year. Revenues fell 10 per cent to US$2.0 billion.

But the Nook division, which has had investments from Microsoft, saw its revenues slide 50 per cent in the past quarter to US$157 million.

Nook was developed to help the struggling bookseller compete in digital content against the likes of Amazon and Apple, but has failed to gain traction in the marketplace.

Last year, the book group said it was seeking a new partner to develop the tablets in the face of ongoing losses.

Samsung is the second largest producer of tablets, with some 22 per cent of the global market in the first quarter of 2014, compared with 32.5 per cent for Apple and its iPad, according to research firm IDC.

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