Print 11 comment(s) - last by brshoemak.. on May 25 at 11:09 AM

Barnes and Noble guns for Amazon's Kindle with its latest NOOK offering

When it comes to dedicated eReaders, Amazon get the lion's share of the attention with its popular Kindle devices. Amazon's newest Kindle is available with a relatively low price tag of $114 and has been a sales success; however, your screen is bombarded with ads when the device is idle or at the home screen.

Barnes and Noble is also no stranger to the eReader market (its market share stands at 25 percent) and today is following up with the newest addition to its NOOK family that adds touch functionality. The new NOOK uses a 6-inch E Ink pearl display and weighs just 7.5 ounces. It is also 15 percent thinner than the previous model. 

Since the NOOK doesn't need a keyboard like the Kindle and features just a single button, the NOOK looks absolutely diminutive in comparison. And for users that are annoyed by hyperactive page turns on eReaders, Barnes and Noble says that the new NOOK has "80 percent less flashing" while turning pages compared to the Kindle. 

The new NOOK features 2GB of internal storage that is good enough to hold 1,000 books. However, Secure Digital cards of up to 32GB are supported should you need the additional space. This third-generation Nook includes Wi-Fi as standard equipment, but you can't have 3G access at any price. Battery life is listed at up to two months (Wi-Fi off).

The touch-enabled NOOK matches the price of the cheapest Wi-Fi Kindle reader (non-ad supported) at $139 and will start shipping on June 10.

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By brshoemak on 5/25/2011 11:09:12 AM , Rating: 2
I just recently got a Kindle but plan to return it and get a Nook Touch instead. For me, the biggest reason is that Amazon titles are locked down with DRM in their proprietary AZM format instead of the industry accepted EPUB format. I thought this was minor until I realized the limitations this caused when trying to use it for anything other than titles linked to the Amazon ecosystem.

Yes, I know you can strip the DRM and convert it to other formats with Calibre but I'd rather not have to post-process every book I download. Amazon has already told publishers that they should begin submitting their works in the EPUB format also so they are moving in the right direction, but who knows when that will come to fruition.

One other minor thing. I used to not be a fan of touch screens, but after using Android on my Droid X it's hard to go back to buttons like the ones on the Kindle. It's a really minor nitpick since the device is first and foremost an e-reader, but I'll be damned if during the setup of the Kindle, without thinking I starting try to touch the screen to select different options. The difference was a little jarring.

"Google fired a shot heard 'round the world, and now a second American company has answered the call to defend the rights of the Chinese people." -- Rep. Christopher H. Smith (R-N.J.)

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