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Microsoft and Barnes & Noble to announce Nook Windows 8 tablet tonight

Today evening we have the mysterious Microsoft press conference, if you still remember it. And we still do not know what exactly the Redmond based software giant would be announcing. The big rumor is that the company will be announcing a new Windows 8, or Windows RT based tablet. And who will be manufacturer of this tablet? Till now, the only company that was rumored to be manufacturing the tablet was Nokia, but today we have a new name, Barnes & Noble.

Yes, very unexpected, I know. But the latest rumors say that the ebook reader giant has teamed up with Microsoft to release a new Windows 8 tablet today. That would certainly be something, wouldn’t it? Some people believe that this is actually what is going to happen, and they have reasons.

Some say that if it was not a tablet announcement, then the venue of the announcement would have been something other than Los Angeles. Also, people believe that such a huge announcement would usually be made at a developer conference and not at a dedicated press conference. Well, whatever it might be, we will come to know that true color of the event tonight.

According to Ubergizmo, there is more to the rumor:

Other rumors surrounding this Barnes & Noble tablet include an announcement for a “strategic partnership” later in April, where Microsoft will be throwing in (invest would be a better word, I guess) $300 million into the joint business known as “Newco” in order to pick up a 17.6% equity stake, while Barnes & Noble would own the remaining 82.4%.

This might be a bit out of the box thinking by Microsoft. The company will be investing in a market to which it certain does not belong. But it looks like Microsoft wants to enter the ebook reader market with Barnes & Noble. But would it be successful?

***UPDATE (10:30am)***

The rumor that Microsoft will team up with Barnes & Noble (ticker: BKS) for the Nook apparently has been shot down by Bloomberg News, which caused the BKS stock to lose its early momentum in early market trading today.

BKS was up as much as 4% in pre-market trading this morning based on this partnership rumor.  However, Bloomberg news is reporting that the Microsoft tablet will be their own brand runnings on Windows 8.   With the mixed reports, traders have tamed their early excitement on this news .

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