Is Now The Right Time To Buy A Nook?

With the knowledge that a new Kindle is on the horizon there are reasons that it might seem to be worth holding back on your new Nook purchase to see what is coming, but is it worth the wait?  At present there are a lot of great products on the market and as tempting as it is to wait for the next big thing, there comes a point when holding off gets silly.  With that in mind, is it worth the risk, however slight, of picking up what may soon be an inferior product?

The biggest thing to decide right off the bat is what you are looking for in your eReader.  Right now, the Nook Simple Touch and Kindle 3 (no matter which type you choose) offer very similar experiences.  The best E INK screens available, page refresh far faster than you could reliably turn pages in a paper book, light and comfortable to hold, literally months of battery life, and a direct connection into each’s respective amazingly comprehensive eBook store.  Aside from a couple very small particulars, neither one is physically superior to the other.

If you have to choose right now, based on nothing but the hardware, then you’re essentially on even ground with these two.  The Nook Simple Touch is newer, slightly faster, has a touchscreen display, and is a couple inches shorter.  The Kindle has the option of 3G coverage, a physical keyboard, and external contacts that can power a book light should you be inclined to use such an accessory.  None of these factor in much when it comes right down to reading a book under normal circumstances.

There is always the fact that the new Kindle is coming out soon and will certainly have upgrades that make it stand out, but what real point of superiority is going to put it over the top right now?  Short of having a non-backlit color screen to make color eBooks a better choice, there isn’t much room to grow.  The Kindle 3 is perfect for reading on, in that once you get started you can forget how you’re reading and just concentrate on the book.  The new Nook does the same thing just as well.  Chances are, the new Kindle will accomplish it again.  As much as I’m looking forward to picking up the new model, and would recommend avoiding any Kindle purchases until it comes out since it is only a couple months away at this point, it does not factor into a Kindle vs Nook decision.

The most important thing in deciding is going to be who you want to do business with.  As I pointed out recently, it is definitely possible to jump from one platform to another if you have the patience to deal with file conversion.  Nobody really wants to bother with that, though.  Since pricing and selection are pretty similar no matter where you buy your eBooks right now, there isn’t a compelling reason to go back and forth between them.  It is likely that wherever you amass your first collection of eBooks is where you’re going to stay.  If Barnes & Noble is the eReader provider for you, don’t let speculation about new Kindles scare you off.  There might be some room for the Kindle to advance right now, but to think that it will be enough in the near future to completely knock competition out of the ballpark is a bit far fetched.

3 thoughts on “Is Now The Right Time To Buy A Nook?”

  1. IMHO, the Nook STR is a far better physical design – smaller, easier to hold, and the on-screen keyboard is much less annoying than the K3 physical keyboard.

    As to format conversion, the only thing involved is to download a book from Amazon to the Kindle application on your Mac or PC, then tell Calibre to copy the books to your locally-stored “library” and transfer them to the Nook. This process takes literally seconds.

  2. I have just purchased a Nook, having gotten fed up with Amazon’s stonewalling over its defective pwr code – the outer coating falls off. There are over 800 known events, but Amazon does not acknowledge the problem unless you insist — see discussons under Kindle2 pwr cord. This certainly has harmed Amazon’s credibility in my eyes

  3. EldRick,

    I think the last time I made any sort of large-scale transition was about 2 or 3 years back when I moved from Nook to Kindle. At the time Calibre did a great job, but took a lot of oversight. I think it took me perhaps 8 hours to make it through 180 books.

    If the experience has improved as much as you say, it might be time to give it another try just to stay informed. I usually just convert books as I buy them as a matter of course these days, which naturally goes rather quickly. Thanks for the info.

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