Barnes & Noble announced a new version of its Nook e-reader today that is aimed squarely at challenging the dominance of Amazon's Kindle in the e-reader market. The new Nook has a six-inch display - as does the Kindle - but the Nook ditches the keyboard for a touchscreen interface.
That interface might make the Nook seem more tablet than e-reader at first glance, but despite running on the Android operating system, the new device is a dedicated e-reader. (That is, of course, until someone roots it and opens more of the Android functionality.) But as a dedicated e-reader, the improvements to this version make it very competitive with the Kindle. The new Nook boasts a lighter and thinner design than the Nook Wi-Fi 1st Edition, the device that this update replaces.
ad-supported Kindle is cheaper).It's also lighter than the Kindle (7.48 ounces versus 8.5 ounces). It has a battery life that will last up to two months (compared to one month for the Kindle). And Barnes & Noble says that the Nook offers "80 percent less flashing than other eReaders - whether turning pages, browsing for books or scrolling through your library." Those "other eReaders" include, presumably, the Kindle. The price, $139, does match that of the Wi-Fi Kindle (although the new
This Nook also has integrated some of the social reading features that were previously only available in the Nook Color. This includes the ability to see book recommendations from friends and share reading statuses and favorite quotes.
Nook is calling this new device "The Simple Touch Reader," something that is meant to highlight the new touchscreen interface as well as the simplicity of the new design. It remains to be seen, however, whether this simpler device will help Barnes & Noble take a bite from Amazon's substantial lead in the e-reader market.
The new device is available June 10, but you can pre-order it now.