Tech Stock News: Google (GOOG) Joins Tablet War

Move over, Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL), Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) and Amazon (Nasdaq: AMZN). You too, Barnes & Noble (NYSE: BKS). Another tech stock is jumping into the electronic tablet pool.

Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) introduced the Nexus 7 – the company’s first-ever e-tablet – at its annual developers conference today. The search-engine giant’s tablet will be similar in size and price ($199) to Amazon’s popular Kindle Fire device. Like other e-tablets, the Nexus 7 will enable users to read books and view other media. However, it will also include several new features, including voice-activated typing and audio responses to verbal Internet searches.

Google’s move into the e-tablet fray comes just a week after Microsoft introduced its new Surface tablet. That came on the heels of Barnes & Noble releasing a Nook Tablet e-reader back in November, intended to compete with Amazon’s Kindle Fire and Apple’s iPad – the dominant force in the e-tablet market.

Google shares are up 1% today on news of its expected e-tablet announcement.

However, the tech stock is still down close to 12% in 2012, and is trading near its eight-month low. Google’s sales growth has been slowing of late, and is expected to slow even further this year.

Will releasing an e-tablet turn the tide for the stagnating company? Competition will be fierce. Just ask Barnes & Noble, whose fiscal fourth-quarter earnings were way down thanks in part to an 11% quarter-over-quarter drop in its Nook sales.

Google has way more visibility and name notoriety than Barnes & Noble, however. So perhaps it is one of the few companies that has the clout to go toe to toe with Apple on its own e-tablet turf.

It will be interesting to see how Nexus 7 sales stack up against sales of Microsoft’s Surface, as both products represent the two tech giants’ first crack at entering the increasingly simmering tablet war.

Published by Wyatt Investment Research at