The Nook Tablet from Barnes and Noble offers meatier specs than Amazon's Kindle Fire
for half the price of an iPad, but the selection of apps on offer for the e-reader/tablet hybrid is a bit underwhelming. Fortunately, it takes less than 30 minutes to turn a Nook into a fully-functional Honeycomb tablet with access to the Android Market.
The Amazon Kindle Touch is quite a remarkable little machine. In many ways, it can be seen as a halfway point between the Fourth Generation Kindle
e-Reader and the Kindle Fire Tablet. However, it's not simply a glorified reader, nor is it a stripped down tablet. Rather, it is another way in which Amazon is building on its lead in the e-Reader market by optimizing the reader interface and user controls. With the Kindle Touch sure to find its way under many a tree this holiday season we put the device through its paces with a hands-on review.
It may not have been the first e-Reader on the market sporting E ink's electronic paper display - Sony's LIBRIé
claimed those bragging rights when it debuted in Japan in April 2004 - but since its launch in November 2007, Amazon's Kindle has risen to dominate the e-Reader market. In that time, it has also gone through a number of updates, including the Kindle 2
, the Kindle DX
, Kindle 3
and most recently, the Kindle Touch and the first Kindle without an E Ink display, the Kindle Fire
. The latest updates to the line-up also saw the Kindle enter its fourth generation, and with the Touch and Fire having the lion's share of attention, we decided to turn the spotlight on the 4th-gen Kindle with a review.
Looking to supplement sales of the new Kindle line, including the Kindle Fire
, Amazon has announced deals with offline retailers Best Buy and office supply giant Staples. The question: why now? Why start selling your product offline when it was already the most recognizable brand in the e-reader market. The simple answer? More.
The company behind the now-abandoned Kno digital textbook
has announced the beta release of a new digitized textbook reading application for the iPad. The free to download Textbooks for iPad app offers students access to a vast library of exact digital replicas of real-world textbooks with the added bonus of an enhanced, interactive reading experience, some useful organizational tools and social sharing features.
The dust hadn't even had time to settle on the announcement of the new Kobo eReader Touch Edition
before Barnes & Noble (B&N) unveiled the Nook Simple Touch Reader. The new Nook has 50 percent better contrast than the previous e-Ink edition (thanks to being upgraded to the latest Pearl e-ink technology) and, like the Kobo device, its 6-inch display has been made touch sensitive with the aid of infrared technology. It's also 35 percent lighter and 15 percent thinner than the first edition Nook, and offers a best-in-class battery life.
The tablet frenzy sparked by the launch of Apple's iPad
in April 2010 and the success of eReaders like the Kindle
has seen many new players enter the market in the past year ... and there were bound to be some casualties. The enTourage eDGe
looks to be one. The company has officially closed the content store for its eDGe and Pocket eDGe eReaders and there are reports
that the dual-screen hardware will follow suit.
While I'm a big fan of the Kindle 3, I think that Kobo may have got it beat with its new eReader Touch Edition. Featuring the latest Pearl e-Ink technology that so improved Amazon's models last year, Kobo's new Wi-Fi-enabled device also boasts optical touchscreen interaction courtesy of Neonode, is powered by a processor specially developed for e-Readers and comes with support for multiple languages.
Barnes & Noble has taken the opportunity afforded by an Android OS update to bring some tablet-like functionality to its NOOK Color
e-Reader. The version 1.2 firmware update brings specially-designed apps, full-featured email, enhanced browsing and new multimedia content. It's available now for free manual download but existing devices will be automatically updated via built-in 802.11n Wi-Fi over the coming weeks.
If we need evidence of the central role the digital world is taking in our modern lives, we need look no further than social networking. In a very short time, updating Facebook profiles and Tweet streams have become a pivotal part of everyday life for many millions of people. Even our literary preferences are beginning to lean more towards the digital, with Amazon recently announcing that the sale of digitized books had overtaken the sale of printed versions. The Copia platform brings both of these activities together in one place, offering members a new way discover, share and purchase books, newspapers and magazines.