MSFT), which is always rumored to be interested in buying Barnes & Noble. Again, this is not a new idea. Let's remember that expectations also ran high last year when Microsoft invested $300 million in Barnes & Noble for what amounted to roughly an 18% stake in the Nook business. Although Barnes & Noble had plenty of use for the cash, it wasn't immediately clear what Microsoft was looking for in return. Fast-forward a year later: Not only has Microsoft failed to offer any rationale for its investment, but Barnes & Noble's future, particularly in the Nook business, is arguably worse off than when Microsoft stepped in.
Read: Apple Loses e-Book Trial Another thing: Doesn't it seem odd that after a full-year after Microsoft's investment that Nooks were still being powered by Google's ( GOOG) Android platform? Wouldn't it have made sense to have converted them to Windows? This fact introduces questions about whether Barnes & Noble and Microsoft ever had any real discussions about creating synergistic advantages.
Truth be told, I expected Microsoft to take over portions of the Nook business, seizing the reins in software and device designs and leading Barnes & Noble out of its rut. I was wrong. Just to be clear, though, I'm not in any way blaming Microsoft for Barnes & Noble's failures. But I don't believe that Barnes & Noble showed the same urgency that it had in trying to transform its business from the traditional retail format to a model that could survive an Amazon ( AMZN) world and an iPad-dominated era. For these reasons, I don't see how it makes any logical sense for Microsoft to do a deal, much less be willing to pay the estimated amount of $1 billion. At this point there isn't anything that Barnes & Noble has that Microsoft would need. Barnes & Noble has been a non-factor in tablets as Apple ( AAPL), Amazon and Samsung have left the Nooks virtually no share of the market. Follow @saintssense This article was written by an independent contributor, separate from TheStreet's regular news coverage.