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Wait! Nook arriving for Christmas after all

Despite statements to the contrary a few days earlier, Barnes & Noble now says it will fulfill all preorder shipments by Christmas. Got whiplash yet?

Customers who placed early orders for Barnes & Noble's Nook e-readers will get them in time for Christmas, the company said Wednesday, despite its statements to the contrary a few days ago.

Barnes & Noble: "Just kidding on that latest delay." Barnes & Noble

Got whiplash yet?

On Friday, the retailer told some customers by e-mail that it aimed to get the device to customers by Thursday, Christmas Eve. Those who did not get the gadget in time would get an e-mail notification on Wednesday with a $100 Barnes & Noble online gift certificate, the company said.

It appears those gift certificates won't be showing up in in-boxes, however, as the Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday that all B&N's Nook shipping orders will in fact be fulfilled. "We're pleased to tell our customers today that we're shipping out all our orders in time," Mary Ellen Keating, a spokeswoman for Barnes & Noble, told the paper.

Various shifts in plans have plagued the Nook since B&N officially entered the burgeoning e-reader market in late October. At that point, customers placing early preorders were told they could expect the Nook to ship by the end of November.

In November, however, the bookseller pushed that date back, telling preorder customers they could expect shipment by December 11. The company declined to say how many e-readers had been preordered.

Then, later in November 20, B&N announced on its Web site that its e-reader, a challenger to Amazon's Kindle and Sony's Reader, is officially sold out through 2009 and customers ordering after that date wouldn't receive the device until January 4.