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Barnes & Noble Won't Give Up On the Nook

timothy posted about a year ago | from the there's-a-niche-for-the-nook dept.

Books 132

jfruh writes "Barnes & Noble's Nook e-reader line has largerly been regarded as a botched attempt to compete with the Kindle, whose failure has contributed to the bookseller's financial woes. Well, despite earlier statements that the company was abandoning it as a hardware platform, now the B&N CEO insists that the company is committed to the product line and the new Nooks are in development."

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Pathetic grasping at straws (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44664373)

Everyone knows the Mirco$oft offering is vastly superior in every way!

Re:Pathetic grasping at straws (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44667081)

Seriously though, the nook *is* superior to the Kindle. It's not locked into the Amazon ecosystem, it supports open, widely used formats like epub and it's physically built better.

KOOBOO! (0, Troll)

For a Free Internet (1594621) | about a year ago | (#44664385)

Kooboo! kooooobooooo! kobooooooooo! kooooooooooobbbbo! kobbbbbbbbbboooooooooooooooolo! lololokobobobobo!

What is it about the Nook? (0)

Predathar (658076) | about a year ago | (#44664391)

I have an older Kindle, and 2 Kobo's. I've never tried a Nook (can't recall ever seeing one in a store up here in Canada but the Kobo's can be found in lots of stores) so I can't tell if it's better or not. I don't tend to judge by features only, I like trying them out. A big selling point with me is there needs to be a button to turn the page and it has to be comfortable to hold with 1 hand while turning pages, something you can't really do with touch gestures to turn pages. Basically when I'm asking is, what does Nook bring to the table that the others do not?

Re:What is it about the Nook? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44664467)

It doesn't have a physical button for page turning, but tapping the edge of the screen will flip the page; you don't have to gesture for it.

The main selling point (for me) is that you can (for up to two hours a day while connected to Barnes and Noble's wifi) read any book you want for free.

Re:What is it about the Nook? (5, Informative)

_xeno_ (155264) | about a year ago | (#44664505)

It doesn't have a physical button for page turning, but tapping the edge of the screen will flip the page; you don't have to gesture for it.

The Nook Simple Touch does have those buttons.

If you ask me (which I guess the OP did), the Nook Simple Touch is a great little device, but the Nook Tablets are worthless. Since you can get the Nook App on just about any tablet (including Windows 8 tablets) you might as well get a tablet you actually want and then just install that, if you really want to use Nook ebooks on a tablet. There's no compelling reason to get a Nook Tablet.

The Nook Simple Touch, on the other hand, is a nice, small device that's rugged enough for me to throw in my pocket and carry around all day, if I wanted to. The display is OK. It's an e-ink display, so it works well in bright lights, and if you get the one that has the glow feature, it works in low light too. I don't like any of the fonts that the Simple Touch offers, though.

All that being said - I expect everything applies to the Kindle as well, so - no, there's really no compelling reason to choose the Nook. There's a very good reason to get a Kindle instead: Amazon has a much better selection. (Yeah, I kind of regret my Nook purchase, but not enough to replace it with a Kindle.)

Re:What is it about the Nook? (4, Informative)

Curunir_wolf (588405) | about a year ago | (#44664577)

All that being said - I expect everything applies to the Kindle as well, so - no, there's really no compelling reason to choose the Nook. There's a very good reason to get a Kindle instead: Amazon has a much better selection. (Yeah, I kind of regret my Nook purchase, but not enough to replace it with a Kindle.)

That's not much of a selling point, since you can install and run Kindle on the Nook, but you can't install Nook reader on the Kindle. So that means the Nook actually has a bigger selection.

Re:What is it about the Nook? (2)

Brianwa (692565) | about a year ago | (#44665879)

Yeah, the Nook lineup seems to a be a lot more open than the Kindle. You can also root most (all?) Nooks if you want to. I have a simple touch and really enjoy it.

Re:What is it about the Nook? (2)

mlts (1038732) | about a year ago | (#44666269)

I bought a Nook HD because the price was right. Yes, it is sans camera and 3G, but it does make for a fairly inexpensive tablet, and you can easily run a recent version of Android on it. For security, there are apps that implement EncFS so I just create a volume and stash my files in that.

As for an E-reader, it does the job decently, although for long texts, I prefer my e-Ink display Kindle Keyboard.

Only two downsides are its funky charging connector, and the fact that if it fails to boot eight times, it will erase and reinstall itself, which means one forced upate, then the second update so it has the Google Play Store usable.

Re:What is it about the Nook? (5, Informative)

hedwards (940851) | about a year ago | (#44664729)

I disagree, if you buy an ebook from Amazon you're pretty much stuck with Amazon devices. But, Nook uses epub with DRM from Adobe, so, my Nook can read books from just about any store that sells them. Whereas Nook requires that you get the books converted, or stick with Amazon books.

I've personally bought ebooks from Oreilly, Smashwords, B&N, Kobo and Ebooks.com, and they all work without converting them. And even the stores that sell DRM ebooks, I can load those without having to crack the DRM. Which I couldn't do with Kindle, unless I buy from Amazon.

But, more importantly, if I decide I don't like the next generation of Nook and my current one breaks, I can switch to a competing ebook reader, without having to crack my library or buy it a second time. Something that's impossible with Kindle.

Re:What is it about the Nook? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44664983)

Exactly. The ePub format is more broadly supported. I rarely buy anything from the Nook store; I just use my Nook Simple Touch as an ePub reader.

This may be why B&N is losing money on the device, if they've decided to try to sell it at a loss and make it up on ebook sales.

Re:What is it about the Nook? (1)

0123456 (636235) | about a year ago | (#44665021)

I disagree, if you buy an ebook from Amazon you're pretty much stuck with Amazon devices.

Or Windows, or Linux (through Wine), or an Android tablet or phone, or an iPad or iPhone, or, I believe, a web interface. If it's DRM-free, of course, you can convert it to any other format.

Re:What is it about the Nook? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44665145)

I accidentally a verb.

Re:What is it about the Nook? (1)

Maestro485 (1166937) | about a year ago | (#44665231)

You don't need an Amazon device to read Amazon ebooks.

I do own a Kindle touch, but I have the Kindle app on my iPhone, iPad, and Macbook. I frequently read various things on every one of those devices depending on the situation.

The sync up nicely too so that each device will pick where I stopped reading on any other device.

Re:What is it about the Nook? (1)

hedwards (940851) | about a year ago | (#44665277)

You're missing the point. You can only read on devices that Amazon sanctions. Sure, Amazon does provide an iOS and an Android version on top of the Kindle itself, but so do the competitors. And I can load most of those books up in ADE, regardless of store. Adobe itself doesn't have the incentive to keep people restricted to one type of ebook reader or another.

Re:What is it about the Nook? (1)

0123456 (636235) | about a year ago | (#44665425)

Of course they do. They only exist to support DRM-ed epub.

Besides, do you really want to tell Adobe every book you read?

Re:What is it about the Nook? (2)

Darinbob (1142669) | about a year ago | (#44666441)

You want to tell even more evil companies like Amazon and Apple? If you get a DRM free book then you don't need to worry about it and no one will come along later and erase it without your permission.

It's moot anyway, I won't use either because I want my books on paper. But if you're insistent on carrying around a device to show off, carry around one that restricts your rights the least.

Re:What is it about the Nook? (1)

hedwards (940851) | about a year ago | (#44667141)

As much as I dislike certain practices that Adobe has, like limiting the availability of Flash and their new pricing scheme for Photoshop, nothing they do is as evil as what Amazon and Apple are up to in the market. Adobe has a huge incentive to permit their software to be used as widely as possible, because that's how they make their money.

Amazon and Apple both have a huge incentive to not play well with others and lock people into their ecosystem as much as possible. It remains to be seen if B&N is going to be able to survive without going that route, but at least they're trying to do things responsibly.

Re:What is it about the Nook? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44665917)

You can only read on devices that Amazon sanctions.

Not true. Amazon is using what amounts to excuse-DRM; for kindle devices the private key is derived from the kindle's serial number based on a publicly known algorithm, and tools for convenient decrypting are publicly available (search keyword: "dedrm").

Amazon's software readers are similarly vulnerable, though attacking those is a bit more annoying in practice from what I recall.

Re:What is it about the Nook? (1)

hedwards (940851) | about a year ago | (#44667127)

A couple things, first off, that's similar to the epub standard. But, you can't remove the DRM from kindle books without having the ID from a Kindle. So, if you buy a book and the Kindle breaks, you can find yourself in a position where you can't decrypt it.

Secondly, in much of the world, cracking the DRM is illegal. If you're going to go to that trouble, you might as well just download a pirate copy if you can no longer access it.

Lastly, all ebook readers have a similar magic number, ebooks are ultimately not possible to secure completely, as they need the ability to decrypt the book without being online. Which means that somewhere in the reader there is a key that can be used to unlock the book.

Lastly, can has been used to reflect permission for about 3 centuries, nitpicking of this sort isn't helpful. I could also get a new car by walking up to a dealer with a large gun. Doesn't mean that I can get a free car like that.

Re:What is it about the Nook? (2)

ZeroEpoch (210003) | about a year ago | (#44664777)

I just bought a Nook Simple Touch from OfficeMax for $59! Besides price my other big selling point was ePub support. I didn't want to buy a device that only works with Amazon and nothing else (unless you do decryption and conversion). I heard that B&N's bookstore is larger than Amazon's but that is just something I heard. I read mostly tech books from O'Reilly so it's not much of an issue for me. The Kindle eInk device does have a better display and some nice extra features but it's not worth over 2x the price. Plus the Nook Simple Touch can be rooted and run normal Android apps, not sure about the Kindle Paperwhite. I have a tablet already so rooting didn't appeal to me but it might to others. I think the Nook is a great lower costs alternative to the Kindle.

Re:What is it about the Nook? (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44664865)

I Have a Nook, and a Kindle.

The Nook Simple Touch is the best eBook reader I have ever used, and I have used pretty much every major version of every major brand that has been released.

I read a lot, several novels a week on average, and so small things make a huge impact for me.
The Nook has a very nice tactile feel. Its coated with a rubberized like surface that is much easier to hold then the standard hi-gloss body plastic on most devices. The shape of the device, particularly the back panel, is very ergonomic, and easy to hold. It has the all important page turn buttons, a huge requirement for me. It has fairly good battery life, and the GUI is easy to user and understand.

There are some flaws.
You can't delete a file from the device, you have to plug it in to a computer to do so. The home page, which is different then your library seems useless to me, but that could perhaps be for people who read magazines, and other documents on the device. The device requires you to swipe across the screen to unlock, which can cause problems because the touch screen isn't capacitive touch, it uses infrared to detect touch, so if there is any dust around the edges of the screen, touch will fail.

Overall though, I love the device.

Re:What is it about the Nook? (1)

tipo159 (1151047) | about a year ago | (#44664923)

Nothing much to add to this except that I love my Nook Simple Touch. I hope that new Nooks expand the capability of the Simple Touch (to make it even better at what it does) and not the Tablet.

Re:What is it about the Nook? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44665361)

I have a nook ST with Glowlight, and while I can't tell you much about the Kindles I can tell you that I love my nook. I can easily side-load it with books, it's the right size and very comfortable (more than my original Sony PRS which I fucking LOVED at the time) to hold and read. The button placement makes sense esp. the power button the on the top/back, though the paging buttons on the bezel are just slightly confusing, and I always just swipe instead of using them. I spend as much time as I can in the physical bookstores and while there I can preview books for an hour. That's been enough to persuade or dissuade me from multiple book purchases. I love Sci-Fi novels and I now read them exclusively on my nook, while I buy programming books and magazines at the store. (Yes, I still buy programming books even though The Internet.)

My daughter received a nook from us and a kindle from her biological father on the same Christmas a couple years ago. She liked both, had money in both, yet somehow built a larger library in the nook until the kindle started to gather dust. The Kindle was one with a keyboard and while very thin and light I personally never liked the shape and layout compared to the Simple Touch. It apparently got flexed one day and ruined the screen, so now she only has the nook. She felt bad because it was a present but said "at least it wasn't the nook, that would have really sucked."

Tablets; I like the small one, but even at the price they're selling for I don't think it compares favorably. They tried something with it, the Nook Store, and in some ways it was a good idea because the problem I have with android is the general lack of quality, but no one liked the idea of being locked in with pricier versions of android software. Now it can use both, and I wish they'd done that from the start.

Rant aside, don't count the nook out, but at the same time realize the original nook was an ebook reader and the tablet is just kind of coat tailing. I love the nook e-reader, the tablet is probably a bad decision for them. I don't know, I'm sure they have smart people looking at this and I wish them well.

Re: What is it about the Nook? (1)

peragrin (659227) | about a year ago | (#44665679)

I like my nook color. But amazon has a better book selection. However my last purchase was a nexus 7(2013). I can install the nook app, and kindle app while having a decent web browser too.

Sure e-ink is better for reading. But for multifunction a tablet is better

Re:What is it about the Nook? (1)

Darinbob (1142669) | about a year ago | (#44666433)

The Kindle is chock full of DRM, much more than the Nook has. So on that issue alone, Nook wins.

Re:What is it about the Nook? (1)

dotancohen (1015143) | about a year ago | (#44667915)

The Nook Simple Touch does have those buttons.

If you ask me (which I guess the OP did), the Nook Simple Touch is a great little device, but the Nook Tablets are worthless. Since you can get the Nook App on just about any tablet (including Windows 8 tablets) you might as well get a tablet you actually want and then just install that, if you really want to use Nook ebooks on a tablet. There's no compelling reason to get a Nook Tablet.

Another thing is that the Nook Simple Touch is very easily rooted. After rooting I've got a backlit $120 e-ink tablet running full Android.

I mostly use it to review Anki, but it is adequate for browsing in Opera, reading books, or most anything else that a tablet does. Without the backlight but with wifi the battery lasts at least 10-12 hours of use, and the screen is absolutely the best screen I've ever use, on any mobile or stationary device.

Re:What is it about the Nook? (1)

Will.Woodhull (1038600) | about a year ago | (#44665643)

Yes, the ability to do a 2 hr in store preview of any purchase was a big factor in my choosing the Nook.

I use it some for entertainment but mostly it is the most convenient way to carry reference books with me when I am on the move. Determining whether a particular reference is going to work well on an ereader sometimes takes a while: does the book depend on diagrams that are crappy on the Nook screen? A lot of publishers just dump the hardcopy version of a book into ereader format without bothering to revise diagrams, etc.

Re:What is it about the Nook? (2)

Colonel Korn (1258968) | about a year ago | (#44664519)

I have an older Kindle, and 2 Kobo's. I've never tried a Nook (can't recall ever seeing one in a store up here in Canada but the Kobo's can be found in lots of stores) so I can't tell if it's better or not. I don't tend to judge by features only, I like trying them out.

A big selling point with me is there needs to be a button to turn the page and it has to be comfortable to hold with 1 hand while turning pages, something you can't really do with touch gestures to turn pages.

Basically when I'm asking is, what does Nook bring to the table that the others do not?

It's pretty similar to current Kindles, but the current 7" Nook HD (my wife has one) feels more comfortable than my equivalent7" Kindle Fire HD for long reading sessions for each of us thanks to a somewhat different curvature to the back. The other thing the Nook has is access to the Google app store, which I won't mention by name because then it sounds dumb.

Re:What is it about the Nook? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44665463)

Plus the Nooks (Touch and HD's) have flash card slots, so you are not restricted to internal storage and the vendor's Cloud. You can even boot a CM Android spin on the HD's from a micro SD card, and not touch the proprietary Android install, although now with official PlayStore support that is not quite such a big deal (still better than the Kindle HD's in that regard, right?).

Re:What is it about the Nook? (5, Informative)

hedwards (940851) | about a year ago | (#44664675)

The main problem with Nook is that they're only available for sale in the US and the UK. They're better than Kindle in most ways. I've had two Nooks, one was the original and the other is Nook Simple Touch Glow. The only reason I upgraded was that I smashed the older one. Anyways, they both feature a MicroSD slot, the ability to buy ebooks from pretty much any store not ending in azon.com. And Nook had a real light before anybody else did. I've used it and the glow light works well. Even lighting across the whole screen without it straining the eyes. Also, Nook was the first reader to get the page flipping right. It has 2 sets of physical buttons so you can turn the page which ever way you hold it. But, it also has the touch screen to turn pages as well. Which works pretty well, except if you accidentally click on a citation link. But, in general the thing about Nook is that it's just solid hardware with good design. The main problem I have with it is that the book shelves are a PITA to use. You have to shelve the books on the device itself, which doesn't work out well if you have a huge number of books.

glo-worm touch (1)

nurb432 (527695) | about a year ago | (#44666075)

Looks terrible in the store.. You telling me its not bad in the flesh?

Re:glo-worm touch (1)

hedwards (940851) | about a year ago | (#44666681)

Looks terrible in the store? None of the ereaders I've seen look appreciably different. Well, not since they dropped the physical keyboard in favor of a touch screen. For the purpose of reading, I've found Nook to do a good job. My main complaint is that it has gimped support for foreign fonts.

Re:What is it about the Nook? (1)

dk20 (914954) | about a year ago | (#44664737)

I live in Canada now, but lived in the US for a while and own a kindle and a few nooks for me and my kids.
Nook Pro's (just the white book reader, not the tablets)
- Both the device and its accessories are more reasonably priced then the kindle.
- Native EPUB support which greatly expands your options.
- feels nice in your hand
- user replaceable battery
- microSD slot which is handy for putting books/music on.
- Seem more "friendly" then others (not as locked down).
- Somewhat stylish (I like the white, which has stayed clean for 3 years).

Nook Con's
- battery doesnt seem to last as long as my kindle
- sorting / cataloging could be improved. Simple stuff like allowing me to sort by when i added the books would be nice.
The nook has two large buttons on each side for forward/backward and can easily be used single-handed.
I use my nook when i'm reading some opensource matrial (epub support is great) and I use my kindle for any amazon content.

I've looked at the Kobo upon returning to Canada and think the kobo is probably pretty comparable to a nook.

Re:What is it about the Nook? (1)

tricorn (199664) | about a year ago | (#44666825)

User replaceable battery? How? I don't have any real problems with battery life yet, but I'm not aware that it can be replaced when it eventually reaches end of life.

Referring here only to the E-ink versions (Simple Touch and Glow), they did a lot of things right. Organizing your books is the weakest part, the book shelf implementation is really weak. The Kindle Paper White sounds like it's better hardware wise than the Glow, but not by a lot. My main issue with the Glow is the durability of the screen compared to the unlit Simple Touch.

Kobo sounds really good, especially the higher-resolution larger screen E-ink Aura, but all the social media oriented aspects of it are a bit of a turn-off, and it sounds like they have some real design issues with battery life, auto-power-off and sleep behavior. NOOK seems to get this right.

Ability to boot off of the external microSD card is also a big selling point for me on the NOOK. If they come out with (and don't screw up) a new version using the newer screen technology that's in the Aura, I'd buy it first chance I got (probably end up buying two, in fact, and pass on our current NOOKs to family).

Re:What is it about the Nook? (1)

dk20 (914954) | about a year ago | (#44666883)

Don't get me wrong, its not like a user replaceable battery is the ultimate selling tool. To me it does show they are more willing to work with their users. Everyone seems to want to make disposible stuff these days.
How? On the original white nooks you can just pop the back off. This is the same way you install a microSD card. The back isn't even held on with screws (just clips).
http://portables.about.com/od/ebookreasers/ss/Nook-Battery-Removal-How-To-Change-Battery-Of-Barnes-And-Noble-Nook.htm [about.com]

Re:What is it about the Nook? (3, Informative)

robocord (15497) | about a year ago | (#44664921)

I have both the Nook Simple Touch Glow and the Kindle Paperwhite. As far as I can tell they are exactly equivalent in terms of the competitive niche. I much prefer reading on the Kindle. It's smaller, litter, slimmer, and the lighting is more agreeable. The nook is oddly thick and the buttons are all much too hard to push, at least when it's new (as mine is).

The nook's lighting is more uniform but the light sources are too close to the edge of the screen, which means the glare from the source bugs me while reading. The brightness controls on the kindle allow for finer adjustment and the minimum light level is lower.

The kindle's almost complete lack of buttons appeals to me, since I'm already used to reading on tablet and phone touch screens. Nook's two different power/home buttons make no real sense to me, and the page turn buttons go ignored in favor of swiping or tapping on the touch screen.

Both screens are very pleasant to look at when the light is enabled, but kind of oddly colored when it's off. The kindle's higher pixel count is noticeable, but not so much better that I'd ignore the nook. Neither screen is very quick to respond to touches or page turns. The kindle is a bit faster than the nook, most of the time.

Shopping, buying, downloading, etc is a bit easier on the nook, in my opinion. Both interfaces are more than good enough though.

The really big differences show up in the infrastructure surrounding the gadgets.

B&N's web site is, in my opinion, horrifically bad. I hate everything about it. Buying items fails frequently, for no apparent reason. I never even look at their site anymore. If I want to buy a B&N ebook, I find it via http://www.goodreads.com/ [goodreads.com] , http://inkmesh.com/ [inkmesh.com] , or by showrooming on Amazon's site, then buy it on the nook itself.

Amazon's site is better. Searching is limited and imprecise, compared to real search engines like Google. The number of items on screen is fixed and too few, but I can live with that.

The deciding factor, for me, is how many restriction Amazon puts on the kindle. Their format is a proprietary version of the old Mobipocket "standard" with their own layer of DRM. Nook uses ePub with Adobe DRM. Both DRM schemes are easily removed, but after removal, Nook books leave you with a wonderfully useful ePub, where kindle books are still in a (somewhat) proprietary format. If I want to load an ePub on my kindle, I have to convert it first. If I want to load a kindle book on almost any other reader, I have to convert it first. Conversion isn't hard, using Calibre, but I have noticed that layout and formatting is never quite right after conversion.

I'd love to read more in the Kindle Paperwhite, but Amazon has crippled it too much to be of use to me. I don't like the physical experience of reading on the Nook Simple Touch Glow... it's just too chunky and clunky. Ultimately, I choose to keep reading mostly on my Android tablets. I buy my ebooks from places that sell them in ePub and read them on devices that support ePub.

Re: What is it about the Nook? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44665091)

I think the Nook does both of those things exactly. The Nook Simple Touch has a touch-based opage turning option, but it also offers physical buttons to page turn as well.

Not to say that the Nook lineup is bulky, but being able to say "It's only X mm thick" is less of a concern when you hold it and realize the ergonomics of back of the devices. (The Simple Touch and HD have similar backs.) This is something that went back to the original Nook e-ink devices.

It feels like suddenly some tech news sites are dismissing the reviews that gave great praise to the hardware design.

Storage expandability, comfortable hardware design, and easy side loading of personal content are all things that make the Nook devices worth considering.

Re:What is it about the Nook? (1)

Cinder6 (894572) | about a year ago | (#44665175)

I have a Kindle Paperwhite and a Kobo Aura HD. I previously owned a Nook Simple Touch w/ Glowlight and a Kindle Touch. As far as I'm concerned, there are three areas where these devices compete: hardware, software, and synchronization services (we'll call this "platform"). Libraries are largely the same, though Kobo is often a bit more expensive than Amazon and doesn't have as much of the self-published stuff.

(All ratings are for dedicated eReaders).

Hardware
1. Nook
2. Kobo
3. Kindle

The Nook simply feels the best and has physical buttons. The Kobo Aura, at least, has a bigger and higher density screen than the other two, which is what edges it out over the Kindle. The Paperwhite is very basic, but it is a solid device; my Kobo, on the other hand, is a bit creaky (apparently not all are like this, and you can fix it with some crafting glue and patience; this sucks hard, but I guess it's an option).

Software
1. Kobo
2. Nook, Kindle

The Kobo allows you to change many more aspects of fonts, such as weight and spacing, than the other two. It offers much more granular control, as well (the Kindle, for instance, only allows three spacing settings, while the Kobo offers at least ten). Put simply, the Kobo is more appealing to actually read on. Before the Paperwhite, the Nook beat the Kindle in terms of presentation, but now the three are all pretty equal on that front. Both Kobo and Nook allow you to actually turn off the backlight in models that have that feature. The Kindle only uses AZW or MOBI files, but as this (along with the DRM) is so trivial to circumvent, I don't consider it an issue.

Platform
1. Kindle
2. Nook
3. Kobo

Amazon's platform is top-notch. The Kindle syncs your reading location almost instantly, allowing you to change from a phone to an eReader in a snap. The Nook takes several minutes or longer, and the Kobo actually seems to require you to manually hit a sync button, or else it will take hours (if it ever syncs at all). The Kindle (and I think Nook?) automatically downloads titles, but again, the Kobo requires a manual sync (though it still uses Wifi, at least). And the Kindle is the only one that will sync side-loaded books to your devices and keep track of your reading location.

Which device is best comes down to the individual. If you're on the go a lot, or have lots of downtime, the Kindle's syncing capabilities are great. If you just read a lot (and particularly on the same device), the Kobo Aura is the one to get. If you want physical buttons and the overall best feel, go with the Nook.

Re:What is it about the Nook? (1)

aheath (628369) | about a year ago | (#44666997)

I had a Nook Simple Touch which was gathering dust. I gave the Nook to a friend and bought a Kobo Aura HD. I like the Kobo hardware. I also like supporting my local independent bookstore when I buy books for my Kobo. Wireless syncing can be slow if the wireless signal quality is poor. I use a USB cable to charge the Kobo from my MacBook. I always sync when I charge the Kobo. The Kobo does have a social media tie ins to Facebook that I haven't used the social media features because I don't use Facebook. The one thing that I miss about the Nook Simple Touch is the rubberized back. The back of the Kobo Aura HD doesn't provide as much traction as the Nook Simple Touch. I recommend the Kobo Aura HD sleep cover because it makes the Kobo easier to hold.

Re:What is it about the Nook? (4, Interesting)

tverbeek (457094) | about a year ago | (#44665263)

My primary motivation for buying a Nook instead of a Kindle was my interest in supporting competition for the 8000-ton gorilla that is Amazon. Consumers benefit when there are at least two comparable options to choose from. Also, as a long-standing bookseller with experience dealing with calls for censorship, B&N has also been less prone to kneejerk removal of books, and (as far as I've heard) they haven't been caught purging their ebook catalog of fiction that touches on controversial themes. (Which is an example of why competition is needed.)

I replaced my Nook with the latest model when the original one was damaged because I'd found that it was also just a plain good device. I especially like the big page-turning buttons, which make it easy to operate while running on the treadmill at the gym.

Re:What is it about the Nook? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44667123)

Competition with the 800lb gorilla and they were actually innovating, the nook color was out a year before the Fire. In fact Bezoes was saying hell no to color, until BN started kicking his ass.

The Nook is a good example (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44664397)

of a company proactively doing the right thing, embracing technology at the risk of cannibalizing its own products by redefining their business as something larger than selling books. They implemented the technology the right way, or at least have received awards and top scores from magazines such as Consumer Reports, set a reasonable price (easily within the budget of a large proportion of existing customers), and marketed it aggressively - the Nook is front and center in many of the B&N stores I go to.

And it still hasn't worked out for them.

So the next time you hear some MBA smarties belittling CEOs of flailing companies for not having the vision to go beyond what made them successful in the past, remember the Nook. It's not as easy as these pundits make it sound.

Re:The Nook is a good example (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44664411)

So the next time you hear some MBA smarties belittling CEOs of flailing companies for not having the vision to go beyond what made them successful in the past, remember the Nook. It's not as easy as these pundits make it sound.

Everyone wants to make everything sound so easy a baby can explain it in a 30 second soundbite. Whether it's political pundits, economists, or just the guy who tells the person with MS who can't get out of bed every day to just suck it up and push through it, everyone wants to think life is easy and anyone who fails at it is a loser.

Re: The Nook is a good example (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44664525)

I agree with both of your comments. It also doesn't help that people are like sheep and simply buy the kindle or iPad because all their friends have them or they've been brainwashed into believing that they're the best and there is no real alternatives.

The original Nook had more features the kindle at the time. It supported ebook lending to other people before kindle added it and it supported the open e-pub ebook file format which allowed people to check out ebooks from the public library. The kindle now has these features. Also B&N introduced a color tablet to their Nook line before Amazon did to their kindle line. Even with these things the kindle still has a huge market share advantage over the Nook. I guess it pays to be the first mass market e-reader on the market.

Re:The Nook is a good example (4, Informative)

amiga3D (567632) | about a year ago | (#44664461)

History is filled with superior products that failed in the marketplace. I've looked at and tried both the Kindle and the Nook and if I had to choose one of the two it would be the Nook. I really have no need for a 7" tablet though so I passed. I think Amazon's marketing is simply much stronger than B&N's. Most people that buy either a Nook or Kindle tablet seem happy enough with it so I don't think there is that much to choose between the two, for me it was the SD slot that made me like the Nook better but a lot of people don't care about that.

Re:The Nook is a good example (2)

alen (225700) | about a year ago | (#44664697)

yep, i never saw the difference between the two and yet for some reason amazon's seemed cooler if you believed the internet

its like movietickets.com vs fandango a decade ago. both were the same but fandango won the cool war. the winner probably hired people to post crap on the internet about how much cooler they were to get the first adopter market

Re:The Nook is a good example (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44664589)

They aren't done yet. Nook is a brand, not a technology. Form factors are evolving, and so are interfaces. No-one "won" this game yet. But if you quit, you have surely lost.

Re:The Nook is a good example (1)

hedwards (940851) | about a year ago | (#44664743)

Indeed, what they really need to do, is to expand the regions where they sell their reader. The US and the UK are not the only parts of the world where B&N does business. And they also need to push the marketing. The first gen Nook was far superior to Kindles of that era, but the word of mouth didn't really travel well enough without a marketing campaign to back it up.

Re:The Nook is a good example (4, Informative)

TerminaMorte (729622) | about a year ago | (#44664715)

Part of the problem is that if you want to buy the books through B&N, the digital copy is generally the same price as a physical copy. They were expecting to make their money by selling ebooks, but were not willing/able to price them competitively.

Re:The Nook is a good example (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44667383)

Except for a few things, already mentioned...and one more thing: pricing. eBooks, via Amazon, are usually less expensive than from B&N.

Hell, eBooks, for the same damn books, are usually less expensive through Amazon, than through O'Reilly, and that's taking into account that ~% discount or whatever that you occasionally get when O'Reilly runs a sale (the 50% off might tilt in favor of O'Reilly, but there have been a few times when I've compared the two, and felt my jaw drop).

Yaay! (1)

Intrepid imaginaut (1970940) | about a year ago | (#44664409)

I love my Nook. Pleeease keep the form factor and size the exact same in future models so I can keep using my nifty Oberon cover. A couple of other suggestions, really amp up the contrast so it looks like paper, and let me read more than one book at once. That would about do it, everything else is perfect.

Re:Yaay! (1)

notanalien_justgreen (2596219) | about a year ago | (#44664489)

How do you read more than one book at once?

Re:Yaay! (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44664583)

Usually it's a Text book + Reference book. Or two cook books.

Re:Yaay! (2)

nurb432 (527695) | about a year ago | (#44666083)

Well, most of us have 2 eyes...

Great to hear! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44664427)

Nooks are great. And I really want B&N to survive since they have shown they can think out of the box.

Nook owner for several versions (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44664481)

My family and I have several Nooks over the years, and they have been great. I've never owned or tried a Kindle, so I can't speak to any performance comparisons, but it has everything we want in an eReader:

  • Screen and font layouts are simple and adjustable, so my wife (who has migraines) can have a migraine-friendly setting while she waits out the pain.
  • The account synchronization between devices "just works"* so we can buy books and read on various devices, fairly transparently.
  • Battery life has improved over the years, and it's not a major inconvenience to remember to plug it in every couple of days while we go work/play/sleep--a big plus for a family of heavy readers (3-5 books per week get consumed in this household.)

The Color versions have also been pretty damn durable. Along with the usual "oops!" as it falls off the edge of the bed or the cat knocks it off the table, my wife accidentally ran over one with her car (dark night, carrying too many things out at once, etc). The screen was ruined, but it powered on/off in a normal way, so I plugged it into the computer, transferred whatever local files we wanted to recover, then pulled the SD card and put it into a new one--practically picking up where we left off.

So I've never really understood the Nook hate out there: Good, solid devices that last for years under normal wear and tear, and seamlessly work between versions.

* I am a software developer, so I know that the account synchronization is not "magic", but I also know that there are dozens of ways to shortcut the process and screw it up--none of which I've seen in the Nook ecosystem.

Once they prove commitment .... (-1, Offtopic)

140Mandak262Jamuna (970587) | about a year ago | (#44664509)

Once the company shows its commitment to continue the support for the platform, they will come. Who will come?

Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers,

Some hack to overcome the lameness filter:

The seax was found in the River Thames near Battersea by Henry J. Briggs, a labourer, in early 1857.[note 1] Briggs sold it to the British Museum, and on 21 May 1857 it was exhibited at the Society of Antiquaries of London by Augustus Wollaston Franks (an antiquary who worked at the Antiquities Department of the British Museum), when it was described as "resembling the Scramasax of the Franks, of which examples are very rare in England; and bears a row of runic characters inlaid in gold".[2] Since then the weapon has usually been called the Thames scramasax; but the term scramasax (from Old Frankish *scrâmasahs) is only attested once, in the History of the Franks by Gregory of Tours, and the meaning of the scrama- element is uncertain,[3] so recent scholarship prefers the term long seax or long sax for this type of weapon.[4][5]

Re:Once they prove commitment .... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44664671)

I think your post's content demonstrates the reason why the lameness filter exists.

Great deal on HD+! (2)

kimanaw (795600) | about a year ago | (#44664517)

I picked up the deep discounted HD+ last weekend. Pretty awesome deal - $179 for a 9" 32G ($149 for the 16G version if you can find them) tablet w/ 1920x1080 screen. No camera, no microUSB, no uHDMI out...but does have GPS, a uSD slot, and can sideload real Android, and purportedly Ubuntu. Wifi seems pretty solid, and the screen is very crisp. Biggest downside is the old/slow CPU - things can get a bit laggy - but for what I use it for (books, email, web surfing) its a helluva deal. A few apps I've tried to load from the playstore won't install, but nothing thats a deal breaker. I've had an iPad, an overpriced POS from Toshiba, and lately a 7" Tab 2 thats very flaky; the Nook HD+ beats them all either on readability, stability, or price.

Alas I don't know if BN can turn the business side around without stripping the Nook down to a basic B&W reader, and locking folks down to the BN store.

Re:Great deal on HD+! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44664769)

It's actually 1920x1280, which gives it 253-256 (depending on who you ask) pixels per inch, verses the iPad at 264. It can boot an OS off of microSD out of the box, so installing Cyanogenmod on it is dead simple. The unofficial build works okay (occasional reboots), but now it's an officially supported platform, so hopefully it'll get better. 1280x720 video is slightly choppy with codecs the hardware can't accelerate, but again, good enough. The biggest downside really is the proprietary connector with $15 cables available only from B&N. Also, the odd size (~9") means that cases made for generic 10 inch Android tablets don't really fit it. The overpriced case from B&N looks like a cheap knock-off of the iPad cases I've seen. But like you said, for $150 it's a steal. The cheapest way to get a tablet with a high-res, sharp display.

Re:Great deal on HD+! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44665549)

Regarding cases, check those that were made for the Samsung 8.9" Galaxy Tab from a couple years ago.

Re:Great deal on HD+! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44665527)

The HD+ does NOT have GPS. But it's still an excellent device for the price.

Their back-end website support could be stronger (1)

Marrow (195242) | about a year ago | (#44664551)

I have seen their website crash a page several times. And I should not have to login again to be in the nook section.
And their content hierarchy could be better so that finding stuff is easier. They need more sub-genre support.
Trying to display cover-art on e-ink displays makes little sense to me. We didnt buy e-ink for the pictures, so give
us content that is text. And do it fast and rich.
Make the e-ink books better at navigating your content and you will sell more content.

batteries lost my trust (3, Interesting)

hort_wort (1401963) | about a year ago | (#44664575)

Even if the "nook is back", I wouldn't purchase another.

I debated between that and the Kindle years ago. I finally decided on the nook after reading that it had double the battery life. Ha! I turned off every wireless connection it had and the thing still wouldn't last more than a few days before begging to be recharged. This fell drastically short of their claims. There are many threads about this problem out there, I only wish I had searched for them before my purchase.

Re:batteries lost my trust (1)

luther349 (645380) | about a year ago | (#44665151)

they both lost me when nexus 7 came around. granted no hdmi or sd slot but its a pure android device.

Re:batteries lost my trust (1)

Threni (635302) | about a year ago | (#44665179)

I got the nook because it's the same price as the 7 but with a bigger screen and better build quality. I don't care about which version of android it's got as long as it's not ancient. V4 is good enough for me.

I am reading this (1)

Endloser (1170279) | about a year ago | (#44664609)

on my Nook. And I couldn't be happier. Unless of course the world moved away from its addiction to flash.

Dismante them ! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44664625)

I thought even president Obama said that they are commited to dismantle their nooks ?

MS partnership (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44664639)

Erm... Will the new ones be the result of the announced partnership with microsoft after refusing to sign the patent deal over the use of Android?

good for them (1)

Karmashock (2415832) | about a year ago | (#44664857)

There should be more out there then the kindle.

I actually like the nook better for a couple reasons. Its just two bad that B&N is so small compared to the monster Amazon has become.

Citation Needed (1)

meustrus (1588597) | about a year ago | (#44664909)

Barnes & Noble's Nook e-reader line has largerly [sic] been regarded as a botched attempt to compete with the Kindle

Citation needed.

E-ink yes (2)

Falkentyne (760418) | about a year ago | (#44664911)

I owned the original Nook with the small lcd screen along the bottom and the newer simple touch nook. I'm a tall guy with larger hands and the original nook was a good fit for me but I like the simple touch for the weight of it. As far as compelling differences between the Kindle and Nook line up - I don't see a huge difference besides compatibility with different formats. It seems like the Nook has better open standard support. This can be alleviated by using a program like Calibre to convert the books http://calibre-ebook.com/ [calibre-ebook.com] though. Also, I believe the touch screen Kindles do not have hardware buttons.

As of right now there is no reason for me to upgrade to anything newer since I can read any book I want now on my simple touch. I don't like using an LCD screen to do any marathon reading as it is harsh on the eyes so an LCD for me is out of the question. I read a lot of books - one series alone was 40 books long - try that with an LCD screen and my eyes would hate me.

Now, if they came out with a hybrid e-ink / LCD device I can get on board with that: Color E-ink for the E-ink screen so I can read books in b&w or other documents in color in the bright light or for long periods of time. Possibly have a glowlight as well?
LCD for when indoors / regular tablet functions

Give me that and I'll definitely buy that new device as long as it's implemented properly with sharpness and clarity for both functions. One of the complaints with the Nook w/glowlight was a slightly more washed out look to the screen in comparison to the regular simple touch. I bought one of the glowlights from Radioshack for $30 when it got clearanced out and gave it to my brother as it just didn't have the same sharpness. I think Amazon won with backlighting - looked like a superior technology with better viewing options.

lrn2english (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44664957)

"Barnes & Noble's Nook e-reader line has largerly been regarded as a botched attempt to compete with the Kindle, whose failure has contributed to the bookseller's financial woes."

The Kindle's failure has contributed to the bookseller's financial woes? I don't think so. Learn to English, kthx

nook Tale of woe (4, Interesting)

Peet42 (904274) | about a year ago | (#44665005)

I bought a nook Simple Touch for my Mother's birthday. It seemed like a good deal (reduced from £80 to £30 for "London Literacy Week") and there were numerous books listed in the "free content" from the 1800s that had been published right next to where she lived that would be of interest to her in her Genealogy hobby.

From the start I was annoyed by it - you couldn't activate it to use in any way without first associating it both with a working Credit Card and an active email address. As it was going to be a surprise I had to go to the trouble of setting up a separate email address just so she wouldn't be tipped off by the (non-optional) "purchase notifications" it sent to that address every time you added a book.

Then, there were the restrictions. 80% of the storage was reserved for DRM'd material - if you downloaded restriction-free files from Gutenberg or similar you could only fill 20% of the provided storage. Oh, and remember all those "free" books I researched before buying it? *Every one* on the US site refused to download saying that "For copyright reasons this content is restricted to US downloads only". Even though I was in Scotland, and the books were published in Scotland, *in the 1800s*...

Oh, and the clunky DRM support requires you to run a piece of third-party (Adobe) software to "authenticate" the device that's not available in any form under Linux. I ended up having to download and install a pirate copy of Windows just to be able to initialise the machine! (I feel so *dirty*...)

There turned out to be a much smaller selection available on the UK site. Of those, maybe one in six would fail to download and crash the machine. Barnes and Noble "fixed" this by deleting the files remotely, and proudly emailed to say the problem had been "resolved". Er, no. "Resolved" would have been for the books to be in a condition to be read on the device that was purchased to read them - anything else doesn't qualify as a "resolution".

The device itself died three weeks into setting it up, and it took the best part of *two months* to get a replacement. (From their factory in Poland...) Which was dead on arrival. At least the next replacement took less than a week. And then I had to set about loading all the books from scratch.

Oh, and the "local number" telephone support was a very faint woman with a Canadian-sounding accent over a bad VoIP link with a 2-3 second delay. But you don't need to worry about that any more, as since I had all these problems they've withdrawn the support number entirely and now you are forced to use "Live Chat" on the wensite during the hours of 9am-6pm. *Their* time zone. Which translates to 5pm-2am where I live.

So, now it works. Except that as my Mother doesn't have a Credit Card I've had to leave it registered with mine. And something like 80% of the "Front Page" you get when you turn it on is something that will lead to you spending money if you click on it. I've had to simply scramble the wi-fi settings so it can't communicate to purchase *anything*. If they'd been a bit more subtle about it I might have left her with the option of buying new books, but as things stand their money-grabbing philosophy has backfired.

Sorry this is such a long rant. The really annoying thing, above all else, is that when it works it works really well - the touch screen is extremely responsive, the battery life is good and if they didn't screw you with the hellishly intrusive DRM I would have been happy to pay two to three times as much for the hardware.

Re:nook Tale of woe (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44665559)

I bought a nook simple touch during one of my visits in USA. I did create a user in the BN web store (and you don't need a credit card, you could use a gift card). And I routinely upload on the device epub books I download from internet without problems (I use Calibre both for managing my library, for converting and for uploading). I also buy books on the BN web store and download them on the device (and on the app I have on my smartphone). And every friday they give away an ebook (they call it "free friday") from a contemporary author and many titles from aspiring authors...
And it is enough to put a SD card in it to have all the space you want for your books and documents (converted in epub, again by using Calibre).
Yes, it is annoying that BN seems to regard only USA as their market, they refuse to sell newspapers and magazines subscriptions unless you live there and their customer service (that with me was very helpful) is available on their "daytime" only.
But have traveled with more that 100 books with me (and some magazines... yes you can buy and download the single issues) and I'm very happy with it. As you say, with the Kindle I would have been locked in much more.

Re:nook Tale of woe (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44665581)

Root it and put the Nook app on it, and FBreader for non-DRM books ( you can make B&N books that way with a PC...).

Re:nook Tale of woe (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44665927)

Adobe Digital Editions will run under WINE.

Re:nook Tale of woe (1)

Gogo0 (877020) | about a year ago | (#44666665)

the regional lockout thing is terrible. i was not allowed to buy an Economist subscription in japan on my nook tablet, so what were my options? ended up rooting the thing and installing a custom ROM running vanilla android.
i love it, only use it for watching NFL games, reading books (Moon+ Reader), and reading comics (Perfect Viewer). of course, i can now also download Economist epubs and read them that way, despite the fact that they wont accept my money.

Re:nook Tale of woe (1)

aheath (628369) | about a year ago | (#44667051)

I've often wonder why Barnes & Noble decided to develop their own eReader hardware. Borders took a different path and sold the Kobo. Borders didn't survive for other reasons but I thought it was a smart move to avoid going head to head with Amazon for eReader sales.

Re:nook Tale of woe (1)

apcullen (2504324) | about a year ago | (#44667397)

There are three nooks in my house, and I find very little to agree with you.

Then, there were the restrictions. 80% of the storage was reserved for DRM'd material - if you downloaded restriction-free files from Gutenberg or similar you could only fill 20% of the provided storage. Oh, and remember all those "free" books I researched before buying it? *Every one* on the US site refused to download saying that "For copyright reasons this content is restricted to US downloads only". Even though I was in Scotland, and the books were published in Scotland, *in the 1800s*...

Ebooks take up so little space, that I've found that isn't a problem. It might be different if I wanted to store movies on our various nooks (a simple touch, a nook color, and a nook tablet) but having books hasn't been a problem yet.

Oh, and the clunky DRM support requires you to run a piece of third-party (Adobe) software to "authenticate" the device that's not available in any form under Linux. I ended up having to download and install a pirate copy of Windows just to be able to initialise the machine! (I feel so *dirty*...)

HUH?!? I don't have any windows machines in my house, and I have no problems with any of our nooks. This doesn't match up with my experience at all. I connect the nook to my linux computer with the cable provided, and load whichever epub files I want. It may be different for me because I run opensuse, which isn't the most popular linux distro, but I seriously doubt that. Really this seems to come out of left field. I have absolutely no problem at all using my nooks with a linux computer and I don't have any (pirated or genuine) copies of windows.

The credit card complaint is legitimate. But other tablets are the same. I created a single-use charge number using my credit card's "online shopping" features, and never worried about it again.

are they perfect? No. They make great e-readers, but unless you root them, they make poor tablets. That having been said, in my experience they are not nearly as poor as the OP's experience.

B&N (3, Insightful)

WilyCoder (736280) | about a year ago | (#44665017)

B&N has been Ballmer'd

If only I could buy from them here in Brazil... (1)

Alejux (2800513) | about a year ago | (#44665077)

Barnes and Noble has a policy where they only sell to Americans. It's unbelievably stupid. I've spent literally thousands of dollars on ebooks in the last few years on Amazon.com. During that time, I've tried on 2 separate occasions buying something from B&N, with no success. I even tried purchasing a gift certificate credit, but when I tried using it for an ebook, they didn't accept it. That's why Amazon.com has and always will beat the crap out of B&N IMO.

Re:If only I could buy from them here in Brazil... (1)

meustrus (1588597) | about a year ago | (#44665131)

Brazil is one of the toughest places to import products. Amazon certainly has an advantage as a larger company which has always been based on the internet, and so has probably been dealing with international trade for a while. Barnes & Noble, being a brick and mortar business expanding into internet trade, hasn't dealt with international crap as much and might not see enough advantage to playing by Brazil's trade rules since it would only be for its apparently not that successful e-book business.

Re:If only I could buy from them here in Brazil... (1)

Alejux (2800513) | about a year ago | (#44665385)

It's not a Brazil issue. All other countries are also banned from buying ebooks on B&N. While in Amazon all you need is an international credit card, with B&N, you need one with a billing address within the US. There are no importation taxes or any trade inter-country trade bureaucracy when buying downloaded stuff from Amazon, just like there are none with most digital content you find on the web.

protesteth too much (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about a year ago | (#44665185)

You know when a CEO insists that the company is committed to the product line that it's only a matter of time until they're gone.

Once they dump as many of the readers that are in the pipeline as possible, they'll drop the Nook faster than Anthony Weiner drops his pants.

Why bother with a Kindle or a Nook? (1)

macbeth66 (204889) | about a year ago | (#44665243)

I have a 7 and 10 inch tablets. Both are Androids and both have the Kindle and Nook apps on them. I buy different books for different reasons for the two platforms. There seem to be fewer and fewer Kindles and Nooks in the wild. Most people doing what I am doing and reading on mobile devices. I actually lent a Nook eBook to a colleague at work. However, according to the pundits, eBook sales are 'faltering'. I just Googled "ebook sales 2013".

Stick to content distribution. (1)

John Pfeiffer (454131) | about a year ago | (#44665421)

A while back, my little sister picked up a Nook Tablet for, what was it? Like $170? Back in May I picked up a 7" Android 4.0 tablet from China that kicks its ass for $30. (In fact, I bought four different ones, and one of those 'Android TV stick' devices, for a total of $145, god bless DealExtreme.) [giantpachi...ofdoom.com]

Just pull the plug, B&N. Concentrate on content distribution, and maintaining the reader app. I think in the long run, the Nook is nothing more than an unnecessary expenditure that exposes them to equally unnecessary financial risks. Hell, if they really want a branded tablet to sell in their stores, they should just re-brand one of those Chinese ones, and cut it out with the custom OS crap that makes it 'not quite an Android device'.

oddly enough (1)

kcmastrpc (2818817) | about a year ago | (#44665525)

i rooted my nook color and installed the kindle app on it.

Nook Owner Here (2)

JackSpratts (660957) | about a year ago | (#44665737)

Bought the Tablet the week of release and paid around $250.00 w/handsome flip cover. It's fits in my suit pocket so it actually goes to meetings. Great screen - easy to read, displays AV content pleasingly (charts, pics, NetFlix etc), good sound. Has page numbers! With format-shifting Calibre I can load any content out there and the expandable memory let's me add all I need. Mine's nearly two years old so the idea of "doing it again" is basically moot. Technology marches etc...I'd buy something up to the 2013 minute now, like the new Nexus 7 with faster page loading maybe, but I have no need to replace my Nook. It's still doing what I paid it to do in '11. It's bulletproof. Battery holding up...It's a real GLU, a great little unit.

Re:Nook Owner Here (1)

apcullen (2504324) | about a year ago | (#44667429)

I have almost exactly the same experience. I own a nook color

My oldest son has a nook tablet, and he complains that there aren't any free-to-play games on it.

My younger son has a nexus 7. The reader apps all fall short of the nook. But the nook app (as far as I can tell) for generic android devices only works for books bought from B&N.

In general our consensus is that the nook is the better reader, but the nexus is more versatile.

Nook Simple Touch - WINNER! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44665773)

best reader on the market:

- long battery life
- good screen
- inexpensive
- microSDHC
- charger works w/LG phones, TMobile hotspots

i never use the wifi on mine - no need, really

The device is more important than the book (1)

sgt scrub (869860) | about a year ago | (#44665953)

Books are primarily going to be sold for eReaders. They don't so much need "the nook" as much as they need an eReader. Applications for a competitor's hardware is known to be destined for failure when you compete with companies that do not play fair, U.S. v. M.S. [wikipedia.org] . My money says selling books that will be read by someone else's software on someone else's hardware will always be less profitable than selling real books.

Good (1)

nurb432 (527695) | about a year ago | (#44666069)

Competition is good.

On a personal note i prefer the simple touch nook over kindle due to native ePub support. And the hardware just 'feels' better. ( yes, that's an abstract opinion )

Now, if they can come out with color.. And get rid of the gloworm version of the simple touch..

Color e-ink! (2)

nurb432 (527695) | about a year ago | (#44666093)

Hey, if you are listening.. 9.5" color e-ink please..

Come out with one of them, ill buy 2 more simple touches as a thanks..

Re:Color e-ink! (1)

pecosdave (536896) | about a year ago | (#44667409)

I would love to have a Kindle DX - the only big screen ereader that comes to mind.

I've got lots of PDF documents, mostly manuals for work but some other things also. My 7" Nook and Kindle are great for reading flowing text, but for PDF's that bigger screen makes a difference.

And yeah, color eInk would be great even if it was crappy 16 color. I've got V for Vendetta and Watchmen as ebooks and wouldn't mind even 16 color for those, 256 would be better of course.

Why the Nook beats the Kindle (basic versions) (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44666205)

My brother has a basic, $69 Kindle. I have the basic Nook Simple Touch (no glow light). Having used both extensively, I can say the Nook Simple Touch beats the Kindle considerably.

First, let me say I don't buy many e-books, instead using Project Gutenberg (which has both DRM free EPUBS and MOBI files), and Google Books for free, non copyright extant EPUBS (though I've used Caliber to convert them for my Brother's Kindle). So my use case might be a bit special.

Oh, and I use the local library website to download EPUBS onto my Nook. Yes I use Linux. There is a simple work-around to get Adobe Editions to work under Linux, and yes it works under AMD 64 as well as 32 bit Intel. You can also map under WINE your Nook as a floppy drive (stupid but two minutes of work) to put Library books onto your Nook.

Now, it is much simpler under the Kindle ... BUT downloading through Amazon the library books you check out allows Amazon to know what you're reading.

That's fine if you are very, very confident that information about yourself won't be abused. That you won't get nailed for say, checking out the ebook versions of Kevin Mitnick's books. Or what not. That's not something I'm comfortable with.

For me, the Nook rocks in that Library e-book checkouts remain only with the Library, and not with Amazon or Barnes and Noble. Privacy is worth that extra step and it works fine under Linux.

So, with a basic 8 GB MicroSDHC card, I have only a fraction of storage exploited by my many free ebook downloads. The Bible, complete works of Shakespeare, Mark Twain, Jules Verne, Alexandre Dumas, and many interesting, 19th Century ebooks from Google Books? Check. No boredom there.

If you are inclined, you can find/google DRM tools, remove any DRM from Amazon books, and convert them from Caliber. Or vice-versa. Or just for back up. I've bought a few books from B&N, they were within fifty cents of Amazon (a bit more, but not much). Their website sucks, but is navigable. Its pretty much like Amazon's.

I don't have the deluxe glowlight version, I do have a separate LED booklight which works OK. The Nook is a godsend at Doctor's offices, the DMV, other wait-heavy places. I cannot praise it enough. Having that MicroSDHC card is a godsend, you can literally load up with thousands of free, high quality ebooks from the greatest authors in history and never, ever get bored.

Want to read Livy, or 19th Century biographies of Napoleon, or Clausewitz, or Don Quixote, or some obscure book off of Google Books? Load em all up, no need to worry about space, with 8 GB I've still got plenty of room, and the Nook supports up to 16 GB in that card slot.

Let's work that out. It basically equates to 16,000 books in a tiny device.

Add to that the page physical buttons, and touch-screen, and it beats the bejabbers out of the Kindle basic version. Fonts are nice too, and you get a bunch.

And yes I also have the Nook HD+. That is great for web surfing and light email replies, will run neat Google Play apps like free chess, backgammon, various calculators, etc. Again with a MicroSDHC card of up to 64 GB, you can stuff all sorts of videos downloaded from EduX sites like MIT, and watch all sorts of lectures by world class professors for free. Yes you'll need to download the videos, and rip them to various constraints using various tools like Handbrake or ffmpeg. But its free. And you can swap out videos easily. And yes you can mount the Nook HD+ under Linux.

The Glowlight version has been discounted to only $99. If I did not already have my basic Nook I'd get one.

I love my Nook Simple Touch. (1)

pecosdave (536896) | about a year ago | (#44667261)

I have both a G3 Kindle (Kindle Keyboard) and a Nook Simple Touch.

My Nook Simple Touch is more versatile right off the bat since it does ePub and can support Adobe's DRM. First thing I did to the thing was root it [livejournal.com] . It was great rooted, I could access my entire Kindle library save for the one audio book, and I was even able to make the page turn buttons work for it. With the limitation that the buttons worked for Kindle or Nook books but not both at the same time (grumble grumble). I was also able to get it to access my entire Google Book library with an old pre-"play" version of the app without resorting to the Adobe stuff.

After playing with the Nook, the Kindle, Calibre, and the Adobe management stuff in my Windows virtual machine I was able to get all my books save for the Kindle DRMed ones on the Nook anyway without the root. I went ahead and unrooted it [livejournal.com] . The Nooks battery doesn't seem to last as long as the Kindle's, but it's physically smaller. All in all I would say it was the cheaper, supperior device. I don't really care for touch screen, but it does make the whole device more compact since it doesn't need external controls, they just shaved that area off the bottom in comparison to the Kindle, even the modern 4th Gen Kindle.

Now I get my books from multiple sources, I still use Amazon, I pick up good deals on Google, I'm a Humble Bundle junkie having bought both of their ebook offerings, and I even pick up one from Barnes and Noble occasionally. They do seem to be the least deal and price concious of the bunch, but they have the occasional exclusive.

Utter Fail, didn't have to happen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44667523)

Disclaimer: Some of this information may be out of date.

I have a nook tablet, and it's a nice piece of hardware.

I don't use it at all. It's locked down tight, so you can't fix any of the problems with it. The web browser is awful, and when it crashes (every day, several times a day), it locks up the whole device, and you have to reboot the thing. And forget about getting access to the android store, or installing your own apps.

Basically, B+N are far too concerned about making the nook the channel for their content. If they only had the vision to open up the platform, and just piggy-back on the success of the hardware, they would have dominated the market. The way things are though, I would not recommend the nook to anyone.

Kindle beats nook hands down! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44667779)

When I bought my first Kindle (Keyboard), I did a lot of research. I had cataracts, and needed the highest contrast screen. At the time that was the Kindle Keyboard (there was no Kindle Touch yet) The Kindle Keyboard had the best screen at the time. At that time I already had a considerable collection of ebooks in plain text format that the nook and some others would not read without converting them to other formats.

Yes, I have Calibre, but conversions still have some formatting problems. The Kindle Keyboard can also be used by my blind girlfriend with a little help getting books loaded. I still have the KK, though I now use my Kindle Touch most of the time now. Amazon has much better customer support than Barns and Noble.

Overall the features of the Kindle Touch, Amazon's customer service, and better selection of ebooks in Kindle, mobi, and text format works better for me. Other's milage may vary.

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