Tonight at Resistor someone came in brandishing a Nook, so of course we all crowded ’round to see if what we’d read was true. Was it really painfully slow? How does it look? Will it crush the Kindle with its bare hands when B&N finally get their supply chain straightened out?
I am not an ereader connosoir. I’m still waiting for the first good Ebook reader to come out. I was hoping the Nook would be it, but for the time being I’m going to have to say there still aren’t any. With a software update the Nook might be a contender, but right now it feels a little half baked.
We held a Kindle up next to it for comparison. Size wise they’ll take up about the same space in your purse. They Kindle was a little bit more comfortable to hold, but neither was particularly uncomfortable. I don’t know what the official specs are on the screens, but the sizes seemed comparable. The Nook’s eink screen looked a lot better than the Kindle’s. The kindle looks like a newspaper, whereas the Nook looks more like a paperback book.
The Nook’s page refresh rate isn’t as fast as the Kindle’s, but honestly it didn’t bug me. What did bug me was the slowness of the UI on the LCD. This is the same thing pretty much every reviewer has complained about. It sucks.
Typing on the Nook’s software keyboard was only moderately irritating. I am as a whole not a fan of software keyboards. I don’t understand people with iPhones because they keyboard drives me nuts. The Kindle wins there hands down by having a physical keyboard, although it then loses points for having all that single purpose space.
The Nook makes me appreciate a few things the Kindle does well, but doesn’t change the fact that the Kindle isn’t the device for me. A firmware update should move the Nook from “early adopter toy” to “useable ebook reader” but I’m not convinced B&N has got it right yet. I think for me the ideal reader would be less of a e-ink wannabe tablet computer, and more like the Cool-ER reader, although the Cool-ER currently has a price tag that’s about $150 too high and a reportedly miserable UI.
So the wait for a good e ink ebook reader continues.