We understand that companies want to keep tight control of their products and how they’re used. But it kind of makes you shake your head when this is done at the expense of functionality. Case in point is the current generation of Barnes & Noble tablets: the Nook HD and Nook HD+. They shipped without built-in access to the Google Play Store, which hobbles the end user’s ability to use the device without, you know, taking command of your hardware in order to load the missing goods.
B&N is rethinking its approach. They’ve mentioned that this is due to popular demand, but we’d bet market forces from competition with the Kindle Fire are also a factor. Yesterday they issued a press release announcing native support for the Play Store on all Nook HD and Nook HD+ devices. At the very least, this lets users load the apps they want without requiring them to root their devices. The move also brings the full suite of Google Apps that were conspicuously missing before. This includes things like Gmail, Youtube, Maps, Chrome, etc.
Devices already in use will receive an over-the-air update. All new units will ship with these packages already installed.