The Nook Simple Touch Reader

I have been a long-time Sony Reader fan. I loved my PRS-500, and jumped at the chance to get a PRS-700 for its promise of a built-in light. Turns out the light was not so great a feature, but I quickly became addicted to the touch screen. I have been hoping that Sony would update their line to include Wi-Fi (beyond the large Daily Edition), or for Amazon to support epub, SD, and a touch screen. Well, looks like the Nook from Barnes & Noble beat them both. Their new $139 Nook Simple Touch Reader checks off almost all of my wish list with features like:

  • 6″ e-ink display
  • 7.48 ounces
  • 2-month battery (Wi-Fi off)
  • Public Library Borrowing Support (coming to Kindle in fall?)
  • Touch Screen
  • Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n (free in-store and at AT&T hotspots)
  • Micro-USB port to sync and recharge.
  • MicroSD slot supporting upt to 32GB
  • ePub, PDF, JPG, GIF, PNG and BMP support

3G would be a nice add, but is not that compelling of a feature for me as long as I have Wi-Fi. I am still a fan of e-ink for reading, and the size is compelling. The reader is measures 6.5″ x 5.0″ x 0.47″. I am also intrigued that it runs on Android. I am really sorely tempted. Do I wait to see when (and if) Sony refreshes their line, or is it time to jump ship to the Nook?

Posted in: Android related, eBook Readers, News

11 comments… add one

  • Julie July 4, 2011, 3:36 pm

    I still must have a backlight for a comfortable reading experience. I had started using my Kindle 3rd gen several weeks ago and found it to be annoying in low light. Adding a book light only introduced glare. I’m currently testing the Nextbook 6, but once I’m done with that, I’ll most likely go back to using my phone and an ereader app.

  • Tony W July 4, 2011, 4:08 pm

    I agree I fall back on Aldiko running on my android phone for the same reasons.

  • Bryan Sherman July 4, 2011, 4:23 pm

    The Droid X + Aldiko combo is hard to beat, but sometimes it is nice to have the space of a dedicated reader, and I do get less eye-fatigue on e-ink.

    If the Nook syncs locations b/t reader and Android App that could be a good solution. Nook Touch in light, Droid X running app at night.

    Unfortunately the PRS-700 proved the incompatibility of e-ink and lighting.

    • Julie July 4, 2011, 6:04 pm

      @Bryan The Nook and Nook Android app should sync just fine as long as it’s a purchased book. Unfortunately, it won’t work for side loaded books as far as I know. I’d LOVE that feature!!

  • William S Lefler July 4, 2011, 6:16 pm

    Original Droid and Kindle reader is great. It automatically syncs with my PC kindle reader.

    Will upgrade to Droid X or Incredible when old Droid breaks.

  • Jerry Danzig July 5, 2011, 9:40 am

    This littlest Nook is priced and sized right — and I say “bravo” to public library support — but I wonder how the Barnes & Noble support will be. As I recall, they fumbled the introduction of the first Nook, and I have to question the company’s long-term financial soundness. Their largest brick & mortar competitor Border’s closed, and on almost any day except around the holidays, our nearest B&N store on Union Square in NYC is full of people browsing but very few in line buying. Hmm…

  • Bryan Sherman July 5, 2011, 10:51 am

    @Jerry

    You raise very good points. The Kindle is on more solid ground, but I can’t stomach what I would give up. IF b&n went away, the fact that it is android-based gives me hope it would have a life after the demise, but more importantly, it seems to me we *may* see a move away from DRM books. Look at what they are doing with the Potter books. That could just be a special case, but I hope it inspires others to follow that path.

  • Aybara July 30, 2011, 9:48 pm

    I have the 3rd Gen Kindle and the new Nook.

    Comparitively speaking, I prefer the Kindle. I have the lighted cover for the Kindle (and I don’t get any worse of a glare than a booklight would do on a regular book).

    While the Simple Nook is a nice reader, I like having a case. However, the cases selection for the Nook are atrocious. They have so much empty space along the ‘binding’, it adds considerable bulk to an otherwise nice package.

    At this point, if I read on the Nook, I only use the cover for protection and take it off for reading.

    Thankfully, it was a nice inexpensive way to get access to all of my ePub material without having to worry about conversions and the like.

  • Bryan Sherman July 31, 2011, 12:47 pm

    @Aybara
    I have always thought popular products (Kindle, iPhone, Blackberry) always get a really nice advantage when it comes to case selection. You highlight how important that can be for the user experience.

    For me, touch screen and ePub are important requirements. For you it is having a decently designed case. And to be clear, I think both are valid perspectives. It seems manufacturers ignore things like that to their peril.

  • Susan Wilson August 17, 2011, 2:58 pm

    I had the Nook First Edition and liked it but hated having to go to the mini touchscreen and through multiple steps to get to the books I wanted to read. So I got a Nook Simple Touch. I have enjoyed reading on it. I don’t get the eyestrain I used to get from reading on my phone (about 10 years of reading on Palms, Sony Clie’s and smartphones has left my eyes a little bleary). I also like the size and weight. the screen is excellent and it is easy to hold and change pages.

    I thought about the Nook Color but again the backlight would give me the same fuzzy eyesight I get from reading too long on my computer or android phone.

    I have used every eBook reader app on the market. Each one has its pluses and minuses. I still use one or two on my phone and computer.

    Ultimately, I decided on a dedicated reader and am enjoying my choice immensely.

  • Jerry Danzig September 5, 2011, 6:15 pm

    Well, it looks as if B&N will be around for a while after all, so I popped for this Nook Simple Touch Reader, and I like it a lot! I especially like reading library books on it, not to mention reading any available book for an hour a day FREE in any B&N store. I also like having a screen that is NOT backlit, as I spend a fair amount of time reading in daylight in the park. This Nook also fits easily in a back pocket of my jeans or shorts, and the page turning buttons in the shoulders allow easy one-handed use, ideal for subway riders. In short, I think this new Simple Nook offers great value and ergonomics. Sold!

Leave a Comment