Nook hitting brick & mortar, Apple Store updating

If you missed out on getting a Nook over the holidays, you'll be able to walk into "most" Barnes & Noble stores and buy one starting tomorrow (2/10/2010), according to a post at Wired. We haven't been hearing a lot about the Nook since its launch. Last week CNET ran a post about a second firmware update (the first was back in December) that should be coming via OTA update to all Nook owners, if it hasn't already (alternatively you can go to the Nook support site and update manually). The new update is supposed to improve performance and add a few new features, but the big data point, given pending store availability, is enhancements to in-store wireless access and special in-store features.

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Between all the readers and tablets at CES, the announcement of the Apple iPad and the news that Amazon is opening the Kindle to some kind of app development, has the Nook already been rendered an also-ran? Or will readily available in-store units help to bring it back into public awareness? Speaking of the iPad, the Apple Store is down for updating this morning. Probably we'll see a refreshed Macbook Pro line, based on a Macrumors post saying that Best Buy had deleted all current Macbook Pro SKUs from their internal database. But it could also be time for Apple to start taking pre-orders for the iPad. It'd be interesting (and poor, from Barnes & Nobles' point of view) timing, assuming Apple sees the Nook as iPad competition. [Update: Store is back up, and neither iPad pre-orders nor MacBook Pro refreshes are there. Instead, Aperture 3 is available, as well as some Valentine's Day promotions. Good news for Barnes & Noble?]

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