Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Does the nook have a niche?

When I went home for Christmas, I was convinced by my wise and technically savvy younger sister that I should consider, and then buy, an e-reader. The biggest name among e-readers is the Kindle put out by Amazon.   Every e-reader (often inaccurately called e-books) is linked to a big company.  Sony makes one, Borders bookstore makes the Kobo and Barnes and Nobles bookstore makes the Nook. Many other devices, like blackberry and ipad, both have downloadable software that allows e-books (which are the downloadable books, not the device) to be read on them.

After lots of comparison and consideration, I went with the Nook.  There are black and white and color versions; I have the black and white which has a color touch menu screen. The biggest selling point for me is that my local (in South Puget Sound/Seattle) library has an adequate and growing selection of books that can be checked out for 21 days at a time for FREE.  Just like traditional library books, these books are for rental for a short time.  I check them out on line, download them on to my computer and, via Adobe Digital Publishing, transfer them on to my Nook. Barnes and Noble is also pretty good about offering free books on their website; a nice combination of classics, unwanted books and new authors. They also have specials, sales and regular price books.
courtesy of news.cnet.com
The battery lasts much longer than I expected. It was five days in Penang, reading Dracula non-stop, before I ran the battery dead. Even though the packging said it would be days worth of reading, I had been skeptical.  The touch screen menu took me a couple days to get accustomed to, but now I find it easy to use.  The wi-fi not a problem to connect and once connected, it automatically checks for new books from barnesandnoble.com.
courtesy of gearlive.com
Jen is hands down responsible for my purchasing this new fangled gadget.  She pointed out that when I go back to The States I always stock up on books; that while I can find English books in the places I live, they tend to be quite expensive and finally but most importantly, that I'm a big reader and if the e-reader wasn't designed for someone like me (traveling, moving abroad, big reader) then who the heck was it designed for? So I was gifted it by my wonderful mother for Christmas.  At the adamant insistence of my sister, I also immediately bought a protective case and screen shield.
courtesy of geeksugar.com.  Mine is just plain black, but I think a slick case like this will be on this years Christmas list.

I was skeptical.  I had a PSP for several years.  I bought it thinking I would play games and watch DVDs on planes, trains and in automobiles.  I did very little of that.  The screen was too small for comfortable DVD viewing and I think I lack the typical Gen X / Gen Y gamer gene. The Nook has found a nook in my heart, and I hope it finds a niche audience to sell to.  I've read Dracula, Sh*t my Dad Says, part of Bill Bryson's A short History of Nearly Everything (I gave up after repeatedly falling asleep in the space section), a couple of puffy girly books and now I'm working on Blink. I've got a word morph game, chess and sudoku (that I never play) and a 25 language phrasebook. My library is up to 48 books just from the website freebies. Now my problem is which to read next!
           Fingers crossed it doesn't go the way of a lot of the technology I lay my hands on.

1 comment:

  1. No problem Sis! I'm glad it has filled the void in your travelling life that Half Price Books no longer can.
    Love you!