Barnes & Noble Unveils New Nook with E-Ink Touch Screen
CREDIT: Barnes & Noble
Barnes & Noble has announced the newest version of its Nook e-book reader with a smaller device that combines the benefits of e-ink for reading and a touchscreen for navigation.
"We set out to design the easiest-to-use, most optimized, dedicated reading device ever created and accomplished it with the All-New Nook," said William Lynch, CEO of Barnes & Noble, in a statement. "Touch makes it simple to use, and the beautifully compact design makes it the most portable eReader in its class."
The touchscreen allows Barnes & Noble to cut off the physical keyboard. So even though the 6-inch display is roughly the same size as the Amazon Kindle's screen , the device itself is much smaller. Navigation is done with onscreen buttons and swiping gestures, and there is an onscreen keyboard for typing notes or conducting searches.
The screen is a proprietary e-ink technology, called Pearl, that avoids the black and white flashing and ghosting that annoys many consumers using other e-readers. The Pearl screen doesn't flash with each page turn; instead, it is meant to look like one page dissolves into another. The touchscreen interface is capable of highlighting and annotating books.
That's not all that has changed about the Nook. The new version has a whopping battery life of two months on a single charge. Inside is an 800MHz TI OMAP 3 processor and 2GB of storage. The new Nook runs on Android 2.1, although the e-ink screen limits its functionality a bit. Barnes & Noble will still offer the Nook Color , which is a more traditional Android tablet/e-reader hybrid .
The Nook only has Wi-Fi connectivity, so there is no 3G connection like the high-end Kindle. However, this Nook is designed to compete with the low-end Kindle, and it's no coincidence that it’s priced the same as the Wi-Fi-only Kindle at $140.
The Nook is available for preorder now, with an expected ship date of June 10. The original Nook will be discounted to $119 for the Wi-Fi version and $169 for the 3G version.
Barnes & Noble also launched a new feature called Nook Friends that lets fellow Nook users connect and recommend books to each other. There's also a built-in lending feature that lets friends try out a book.