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Women Are Hooked on the Nook Color

May 23, 2011

Women Are Hooked on the Nook Color

By Tammy Wolf
TMCnet Web Editor

Men are from Mars, and women are from Venus, right? Well, in the land of tablets, this still remains true.

According to the New York Times, Barnes & Noble’s Nook Color has been a hit among women, much like the iPad has remained a favorite among the likes of men who use the tablet for men’s magazines. Subscriptions and downloads to women’s magazines like Cosmopolitan, Women’s Health and O, The Oprah Magazine, signify that women are flocking to the Nook Color for its best-seller selection.

The reason for this disparity, says the New York Times, has to do with the preferences of each gender. While the iPad is more popular with men due to its high-tech offerings, women prefer a simpler, straightforward device – something they can easily read on. Forrester Research (News - Alert) data reveals that 56 percent of tablet owners are male, while more than half (55 percent) of e-reader users are female.

Women are also more likely than men to purchase books, according to research performed by Bowker. Therefore, they are more likely to buy a device that caters to this hobby.

While the Nook Color, also referred to as “the Reader’s tablet,” has been on the market only since November 2010 and has been pinned against competitors like Apple (News - Alert), Android and Amazon-based tablet devices, its success is quite a surprise for women’s magazine publishers.

“We didn’t really know what to expect,” said Liz Schimel, executive vice president for digital media for Meredith, publisher of Family Circle, Better Homes and Gardens and other women’s magazines. “We regarded it as sort of a test. Would the Nook magazine experience resonate with consumers? We were extremely pleasantly surprised. I think Barnes & Noble has been very smart about creating a whole brand and a campaign that’s really targeted at their core mass audience which overlaps nicely with our audience.”

Researchers are also pointing to targeted advertising helping to sway the market, as many Nook Color ads display women and girls using the device in relaxing environments, like the beach, in bed and on the couch.

Tammy Wolf is a TMCnet web editor. She covers a wide range of topics, including IP communications and information technology. To read more of her articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Rich Steeves

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