Barnes And Noble Nook Reviews


Barnes And Noble has finally started shipping out the Nook, so at least the early birds will be using their brand new Android based eBook reader over Christmas. The rest of you can get a Kindle for Christmas. So what is the Nook user experience be like? Not too great, judging from the reviews.

It seems like Barnes and Noble is facing what most companies face when launching a new product — the hiccups associated with a first generation device. There’s always a rush to get the thing out of the door and you know that things have been rushed along. After all, the research lab and the marketing wing has never seen eye to eye on almost any issue for all of corporate business history.

So there are features that are missing from the Nook that would likely be addressed by the firmware upgrade that is coming our way soon. The glitches, slow downs and reponse problems are usually associated with software because these things are not caused by the hardware unless something went gravely wrong during initial testing phases. Software can always be pushed out later.

All the reviews by popular techies suggest the same thing over and over again — the thing has potential but it is still a toddler and is not ready to face all the ugliness of the world. As an Android-based reader there is hope for the Nook yet, thanks to its innovative design. Just don’t expect it to do compare favorably with the Kindle as of yet. The Kindle has had a few product cycles to grow and hence it currently stands out as the best bargain amongst the ever growing number of eBooks. But devices like the Nook will soon make sure that the choice is not that simple.

1 thought on “Barnes And Noble Nook Reviews”

  1. Why I returned my nook for a Kindle

    The first couple points I know are silly, but they build up the frustration. Nook came packaged much nicer than the Kindle. However I could not figure out how to remove the Nook from the packaging (it took about 20 minutes).

    Next, shortly after I turned on the Nook and registered it I had to sit for about 10 minutes while B&N pushed a software update.

    Now to the more serious stuff:

    I did have fun loading some images on for the desktop (screensaver), loaded some music files and purchased a couple books. One of the books did not load though. I called customer service, waited 20 minutes and hung up. Tried again the next day, waited 1 hour 30 minutes just to have the service person say “we need to do a restore of the Nook.” We still could not get the book to load and then he gave a credit.

    Two days later I turned on the Nook and it froze, touch screen would not work, pages would not turn. Once it was freed up I could not change the page of a book (froze again). At times the page turns took more than 5 seconds (very frustrating when you are in the flow of a story). At this point I got online to find solutions, but what I did find was many blogs (and B&N’s own blog) riddled with unhappy customers.

    My mindset changed. I found a policy on the B&N site that stated I could return the Nook to my local store. I called the store and spoke to the manager and expressed my dissatisfaction with the nook and asked if I could return the product – she said I could. I then followed up with a call to B&N customer service to seek a refund of the purchase price of the books I ordered. They refused to refund the money stating that B&N offered several applications in which I can read my books. I told B&N that I would not have ever ordered the books to sit and read them on my computer or the 3 ½ inch screen of my Blackberry. They still refused.

    Once I returned the nook I returned home and ordered the Kindle. Got it the next day. Love it.

    I don’t blame B&N for their marketing, it was great marketing that would get thousands of people to buy a product they had never touched. Nor do I blame them for pushing the product to market prior to it being ready – I would have done the same thing. I just am not a person who has the patience to work with a company as they iron out the issues (I did this with my computers in the early nineties). What I would ask B&N to think about is that when asking their customers to work with them while they fix issues to deliver a more consistent product that they be more willing to work with the base of customers who decide not to walk through the murky waters with them.

    Once I had a nook in hand I discovered some inconsistencies of their deliverables and marketing. Te first two admittedly are smaller issues: first, the lending program appears to be limited to one time per book for a maximum of 14 days. Second, the in store browsing is limited to an hour. However the biggest thing I think buyers should be aware of is although B&N does appear to have more than a million titles, many of these (if not half) are public domain books that are offered with the Kindle as well. It would seem that Amazon does not market the public domain count with the titles counts that they offer for sale. If you are weighing the choice, I would encourage you to check the titles you may want to purchase before you make an investment in an eReader.

    Once I received my Kindle I think it felt better to me because my experience with the nook was so bad. Within a couple days of using the Kindle I called Amazon because the “precious page” button seem to be coming loose. The customer service person took the information and sent a replacement Kindle, I had it in hand within a couple days.

    A couple features with the Kindle that nook does not have are the experimental web browser as well as text to speech. Now a computer voice is not always the most soothing voice, but the voice on hte Kindle is not bad and can give me that little extra help ready the final few pages of a book as my mind starts wondering right before I go to bed.

    I simply want a eReader that would deliver great products (books) and be fun. Nook became work, it stopped being fun. I do lose a few dollars with the books I purchased at B&N, but it is price to pay for a lesson (A big price that I will not soon forget). And I told a friend the other day, I’m glad I had to go through all of this, because I do not doubt that I have the better product with the Kindle. I would have always wondered about that had I not had the opportunity to touch both.

    I have the better product with the Kindle.

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