Kindle vs Nook Review

Please read the Kindle 3 vs Nook review – It compares the new Kindle 3 against the Nook and is the most relevant Kindle vs Nook comparison.

For a detailed comparison of Kindle 2 and Nook please read the updated Kindle vs Nook review – It’s written in April 2010 and based on Nook’s third software upgrade.

Let’s jump into a Kindle Vs Nook Review. Since the announcement of the Nook, Kindle PDF support has been added, Kindle for PC has been released, and Amazon has made other enhancements.

Kindle Vs Nook – Where Nook Wins

  1. Lending Books with LendMe – You can lend out your Nook ebook to a friend for up to 14 days. They can read it on their iPhone, computer or Nook. Publishers have the option to turn this off.
  2. The Nook to Nook lending feature is really cool if it means you can share with another Nook owner.
  3. Nook works with Overdrive Library eBooks (range of eBooks at Libraries is usually limited). Use Adobe Digital Editions to transfer to Nook.
  4. 3.5″ Color Touchscreen to browse covers and navigate.
  5. A great browser – though it only works on WiFi.
  6. WiFi 802.11 b/g and Free WiFi in Barnes and Noble Stores. 
  7. Micro SD memory expansion slot. 
  8. ePub Support.
  9. Custom Screensavers and other personalization like back covers.
  10. Replaceable Battery.

B&N took their time and cherry picked common Kindle owner complaints i.e. memory card, replaceable battery, and lending.

The big negative for B&N is that their main value proposition was the LendMe feature and Publishers limited the feature.

Android has a lot of potential – However, the videos don’t show any special use of Android.

Kindle Vs Nook – Where they Tie

  1. eInk Screen – They both have the exact same screen. 
  2. PDF Support – Kindle added PDF support on Nov 24th, 2009.
  3. $9.99 Price on Bestsellers – Impressive that B&N matched this. Guess they realize this is one of Amazon’s huge advantages. Note that apart from the bestsellers Kindle prices are generally cheaper. So check the prices for books you intend to buy at both Kindle Store and B&N eBooks store.
  4. $259 Price – Again, matching a significant Amazon Kindle strength. Note: Amazon has consolidated Kindles into the International Kindle and cut its price to $259.
  5. Will Nook have frequent free book offers like Kindle does? It seems so since the list of titles they are promoting includes books like Maximum Ride that Kindle had for free.
  6. PC Support – Kindle for PC has arrived with multi-touch goodness and XP, Vista, and Windows 7 Support.

Kindle Vs Nook – Updated Items

  1. You are now able to browse complete ebooks at B&N stores – 1 hour per book per 24 hour period. Selected books and not all books.
  2. B&N’s claim of over 1 million books – most of these are free public domain books from Google. 
  3. Battery Life of Nook is shorter – especially now that Kindle 2 International battery life with wireless on has been boosted 75%.
  4. The Nook is more compact but the Kindle is thinner and lighter – Not a very significant difference.
  5. Audiobooks – Nook doesn’t support Audible audiobooks (only mp3s).
  6. One Handed Use – The dual screens and the touchscreen makes one-handed use a bit tougher – not enough to create a clear Kindle advantage.
  7. Nook has covers from Kate Spade, Jonathan Adler, Tahari while Amazon has Cole Haan.
  8. Sharing of up to 6 Kindles on an account. Nook will also allow multiple Nooks on one account – exact number is not specified.
  9. Nook supports Sony Store eBooks – Not significant as Sony eBook Store has high prices.

Not sure how much of a difference B&N’s retail presence will mean. They do have 1,300 stores – You have to think that people will go online and read up on the Kindle before deciding.

Kindle Vs Nook – Where Kindle Wins

  1. Speed – The Nook is slower than the Kindle. This used to be the main disadvantage Nook reviews have pointed out. B&N have fixed some of this though Nook is still slower than Kindle and not as easy to use. 
  2. Free Wikipedia Access. All over the world.
  3. Read To Me Text To Speech Feature.
  4. Ease of Use. The interface is not that intuitive and having two screens is a bit confusing. Some of the menus are terrible.
  5. International Availability – Kindle ships to 176 countries. 81 countries have WhisperNet and free Wikipedia.
  6. A physical keyboard for people who prefer it over a touchscreen keyboard.
  7. Cheaper Books – This only applies to non Agency Model Publishers. These books are often more expensive at the B&N store (as compared to in the Kindle Store).
  8. More newspapers and magazines on the Kindle.
  9. Free Internet. 
  10. Nook has a 14 day return period and charges a 10% restocking fee. Kindle has a 30 day return period and no restocking fee.

With the International Kindle you can buy books outside of the US. With Nook you cannot buy ebooks when outside the US. Newspapers and Magazines you can – they are delivered free if you can find WiFi for your Nook.

Conclusion – Kindle Vs Nook is exceedingly close

The Kindle and Nook are pretty much in a tie – Kindle at $189 with Free Internet is an incredible value proposition. The Nook with WiFi and its great browser is also an incredible value proposition. Both are very good ebook readers.

  • If Wider range of eBooks or Faster User Interface or Free Internet or the Read To Me feature or International WhisperNet and Wikipedia is important to you, then the Kindle is a clear winner.
  • The Nook has a great browser, memory extensibility, ePub support, WiFi, a replaceable battery, and support for Library eBooks – making it better for you if those are more important to you.

Kindle vs Nook has fluctuated with the Nook and the Kindle edging each other. At the moment it’s really close. In my opinion the Kindle is a bit ahead – However, please decide for yourself.

Check out my painfully detailed Nook Vs Kindle Review for more insights (Note: not updated since 2009). 

At the moment Kindle Vs Nook is extremely close with your preferences determining what’s the better choice. Kindle vs Nook comes down to the factors that are most important to you.

160 thoughts on “Kindle vs Nook Review”

    1. thanks for that. Kindle does support other languges – howeve,r you need a font hack to support languages that don’t use the english alphabet.
      that’s a really strange restriction on the Nook.

      1. My library includes books in Arabic and Armenian in addition to Western languages. This is a deal breaker for Nook as far as I am concerned. Possibly also for Kindle depending on what “font hack” means.

      2. Switch11 I have been getting your e-mails for approximately a year now. As of about 3 days ago, I have started receiving a blank grey screen with no words as your blog??? Do you have any idea what is going on? Do you have any idea what I can to repair this?

        Thank you,


  1. Just checked and Engadget updated their coverage of the Q&A. The Nook does NOT have a built-in web browser and they have no plans of adding it.

    That for me is a deal killer. Which is weird since its running Android, which has a fantastic web browser optimized for mobile browsing.

    If they’d thrown that in there I would have upgraded to a Nook. I’m hoping Amazon responds by cutting prices on the Kindle before Christmas, but either way it looks like I’ll be buying a new Kindle before Christmas.

    1. I’m also hoping the price for the Kindel DS goes down for xmas. I do not have a kindel and don’t know if I should get the DS or the kindel 2-I’ve been reading and to me the kindel is the leader, but the price is so steep.

  2. I wasn’t thinking about non-Latin character sets, but I’d expect it (Nook) to support at least Latin1, so it can support the European languages that use diacritics (e.g. French)

  3. Hi, thanks for this summary! It’s an exciting year for eBook enthusiasts!

    I have a Kindle 2 and bought one for my elderly father, but I think if I were buying from scratch, I’d buy a Nook from what I can see.

    The restocking fee would make me cranky if I returned it, but remember that with Amazon products, you can’t actually see one or try one before you buy. With B&N’s Nook, they’re pushing in their ads that you can actually try before you buy. If you could try a Nook multiple times with multiple family members in a store before buying a Nook, that could trump the Kindle return policy.

    On the other hand, Amazon is great with their customer service for the Kindle. We’ll have to wait to see what Nook buyers think of customer service in the coming months.

    Although I’ve Twittered from the Kindle and love the Wikipedia access, it’s really a terrible browser. Using GMail’s mobile version is possible, but sending a message tends to crash the Kindle browser the few times I’ve tried since I got mine in February. And forget checking my accounts — the Kindle browser simply can’t go there. Or many other web sites.

    The Amazon store, on the other hand, is great on the Kindle, but the Nook experience in color with touch looks a lot better.

    As for lending vs. family — I think lending is much better, even for families. I’d like to share books with my adult brother and sister, but I certainly don’t want them all to be able to buy books (by accident, of course!) on my Amazon linked credit card. Right now my father’s Kindle is linked to my account, and although I’ve bought a book for him and read a little on my own Kindle, we don’t really read the same things. My friends, on the other hand, often do read the same things (my sister would read any fiction I read).

    So I think lending is better than a linked family plan.

    In fact, if I were buying a new unit today, if the Nook feels as good as it looks, I’d probably buy one for me and one for my sister simply because I could lend her every single one of my fiction books without her having to be on my account or buying anything for herself. The Kindle doesn’t have any option like that — a no-strings sponsorship option.

    As for multiple languages — I think the Nook beats the Kindle there, too. My brother’s wife is Japanese and would love to read new novels from Japan without paying crazy shipping costs. The Nook would be great for someone like her, because if the novel or other written work is available in a PDF (if the Nook can display Kanji characters), then that whole world of current literature and magazines would open up for her. Same thing for people who read Russian texts in the Cyrillic alphabet. Or Arabic. Or Thai. Or Korean. Etc.

    The Kindle simply cannot display those languages. The PDF conversion, I think, can’t handle anything graphics intense and the Kindle doesn’t have those fonts natively.

    As for one handed use — I totally disagree. I love my Kindle 2, but there’s only a single backwards page turning button — on the left. I’m right handed but tend to hold my Kindle with my left hand and turn pages with it mostly, so I’m fine — but I couldn’t use the Kindle DX because I’d have to turn the Kindle DX upside down for a similar use.

    The Nook, on the other hand, conveniently has forward and backward buttons on BOTH sides and the home button is located above the touch screen, so I think it looks easier for someone like me to use either the left or right hand to both hold and turn pages.

    Have you ever held a Kindle 2 in your left hand and wanted to see your document index? You have to put it down and switch hands. With the Nook, it looks like you could put it down and then use the touch screen.

    Last but not least, the Nook allows you to continue reading where you left off — on a BlackBerry or a Mac or PC. The Kindle only has an iPhone app right now. I think if you have an iPhone, the Nook is only slightly better on that score, because you can continue reading on a computer screen. But if you have a BlackBerry, the Nook beats out the Kindle easily because you can continue reading on your phone or a Mac or a PC.

    I don’t know if the Nook has 3G internationally, so the Kindle might have a slight edge except that the Nook also has WiFi, which could be better or worse depending on where outside the US you are at any given moment when ordering another book.

    Don’t get me wrong — I adore my Kindle 2 and I don’t regret buying two of them right when they came out. But this is definitely the year of the eReader and the Nook seems better in almost every way from the ad and the upcoming Sony Daily Edition and Plastic Logic and iRex readers all seem like they are expanding and game changing the eReader market in new and important ways. But for what you can spend cash on today, the Nook looks like it’s pushing “best in class” on almost every front.

    1. Its interesting you think Nook is better on every front.

      I think it’s a tie. Kindle has free internet, read to me, and a lot of other benefits.
      It’ll be interesting to see what Amazon do in the next 5-6 weeks.

      1. The Read To Me feature is worthless. Unless you like that bland robo voice that doesn’t read alot of words correctly.

        “The man read the letter to his blind wife”comes out as he reed it to his blind wife.

        It’s a useless gimmick, nothing more.

      2. I’ve noticed that everyone fails to mention that the kindle is lighter (which starts to matter when your holding it up for hours at a time reading) and has 3 times the battery life with or without the wireless on – mine lasts about 3 weeks between charges with the wireless off.

        As of the latest update the kindle now supports native .pdf support (aka no conversion) and has an even longer battery life. As for the read to me feature, Its definately not worthless. The kindle has become very popular with the elderly and vision impaired because of this feature and because of its ability to change font size (7 available sizes). Personally I like the text 2 speech because it helps me follow along with books that aren’t that interesting to read (The Bible and some required school reading).

        Just because doesn’t pronounce every word correctly doesn’t mean that its useless. The only words that I have seen it struggle with are names or words that 40% of america would fail to pronounce correctly. Long story short (get ready for a run on) the Kindle is faster, has all the books that you will want to read available for cheaper, is lighter, has a much longer battery life, is thinner, has excellent 24/7 365 free customer service from a company who loves to take care of their customers, comes with a 1 year manufacturer warranty and available 2 year extended warranty, has a slow but working web browser, it supports more native file formats, has excellent international wireless coverage (over 100 country and it is on AT&T so the networks have already been established), it also has landscape mode which is helpful if your reading with a enlarged font size, and no hidden fees (the only fees are for document conversion and downloading books while outside of the country – a 1.99 increase), last but not least my favorite part of my kindle is waking up and having my newspapers, magazines, and blogs just sitting there waiting for me.

        As far as sharing goes, you can only share your nook book with 1 person EVER, but the kindle can share books between up to 6 kindles on one account – great for families with more than one kindle.

        I also noticed that you said the nook is smaller which is correct but kind of misleading according to the barnes and noble comparison chart the kindle is thinner by 4 millimeters and weighs 1 oz less.

        And did i mention that I can press one button and my kindle sync’s to the page that i was left off when i was reading my book on my pc or my brothers kindle? Just saying.

        If you look on the Kindle pages of amazon’s site you can also find links to people that you can contact in your area who would be more than happy to show you their kindle and let you play with it for a while and tell you what they love about their kindles.

        Now I know this reply is long and put together poorly but I just started throwing my thoughts down on paper, and the only thing that i really want to get across is that the kindle is the definition of the sleek and sexy e-reader, the nook just looks like a bloated version who threw on a tacky color belt to show off to help compensate for its short comings.

        The nook can’t hold a candle to the kindle.

          1. I was able to use a new nook for about an hour in a B&N store a couple of days ago, with my new Kindle 2 beside me for comparison.

            The nook is very nice but not that different in appearance from the Kindle. To be frank, I’m disappointed in both of their e-ink screens, which are just not as good for reading (i.e., as contrasty) as a real printed page.

            They both look good by themselves but in my opinion they both still look pretty sad next to an actual printed book page. I did find the Kindle’s 5-way controller much easier to manipulate than the nook’s touchscreen, but that could be a matter of familiarity.

            I had come to try the nook with high hopes for its touchscreen (because I find the Kindle’s keyboard awkward) but several times I accidentally wiped out everything I’d typed using the nook’s touchscreen’s virtual keypad because the “clear” key is right below the “M” key and my finger kept hitting both at the same time.

            I have average hands but am not used to using a virtual keypad and that might be part of the problem. One thing I did at the B&N store while waiting for someone else to handle the nook was to go online to CNN using my Kindle to read a news story. That was kind of neat, and the nook can’t compete there.

            On the other hand, these are devices primarily for reading, not for typing or for accessing the internet. From the point of view of just reading, they both seem quite similar to me. One thing they both need to fix, as far as I’m concerned, is the quite audible “click” the next-page button makes. This click sound is amazingly loud when you’re lying in bed reading in a quiet room and your spouse is next to you trying to sleep!

            (Hey Amazon: can’t your engineers fix it so that one of the other keys, like the space bar, could double as a quiet page-turning key?). Finally, does anybody know why Kindle doesn’t handle EPUB files? I don’t understand what Amazon has to lose by adding this. Anyway, good luck to B&N, because the more ereaders there are out there, the greater the competition, and the more we consumers will ultimately benefit.

          2. The Kindle does not support ePub files due to usage of DRM restrictions that the company puts into the device. They could easily change it since they actually bought out the DRM company.

            Basically aside from this being an technological warfare, its also a format war. The sad thing about Kindle is it uses a proprietary format for its eBooks, so the only way you can read these books are through Amazon and Kindle.

            Where as the Nook, with support of ePub and most other major choices can get books for almost anywhere that sells eBooks. Which this article shows slight its age on the Kindle debate by the way. A nook can get books from 3-4 different online retailers, and at the moment they are fixing their current pricing information. Since they do not use a proprietary format.

            Also a feature that is not widely discussed on the Nook, is you can go to your local library and if they have eBooks for download, you can get those too.

          3. Kindle supports a lot of formats i.e. PDF, prc, txt, mobi, etc. – You can get these books from a lot of different stores.
            Yes, Kindle Store books are restricted to Kindle, Kindle for PC, and Kindle for iPhone. However it’s wrong to say you’re restricted to buying eBooks from Amazon.

            You’re right that Nook supports Library Books. Was just waiting for confirmation – B&N never advertised it.

          4. I used a Kindle 2 for about two weeks before returning it because I did not like the loud click sound the turn-page button made and because it was incompatible with the Adobe Digital Editions that I would need to download and read e-books from my local library. But before I returned it, I took it to B&N to compare with the nook side-by-side. In many ways I liked the nook. First, I was able (after the recent firmware upgrade) to turn pages silently using a fast side-to-side finger swipe over the touch screen (when black). I liked that. And from what I have read online, it is possible to use Adobe Digital Editions on the nook (with some help from one’s computer). The page-turn is still considerably slower on the nook, compared to the Kindle 2. I hope they fix that eventually (I expect that they will eventually add a horizontal format). I haven’t made up my mind about buying a nook yet; I think I would miss the Kindle’s text-to-speech function and the ability to look things up with Wikipedia. So I think I will wait a bit longer to decide and see what the Kindle 3 has to offer and what the imminently-expected Apple iSlate will be like (and how much it will cost!).

    2. Excellent and thorough post, Gib.

      I do not own either, but I am in the market for one. I like the internet access on the Kindle, but I am hearing people tell me that it too slow and not worth it (is this true?). It would really be nice to access internet easily and where ever you go…but if it too slow, forget it.

      I also may wait for the second genation Nook, that may offer up graded features such as internet access.

      Any thoughts on this?

      1. The Internet Access is slow – however, it is useful in a lot of situations.

        Think middle path – it is neither as useful as internet on a netbook would be, nor is it useless as some people claim.

      2. I have the Kindle DX. The web browser is experimental. It can access any Web site but if the site has a lot of java scripts, etc. it will load funky. The browser is best used on text based Web sites like Wikipedia. But images do load. Overall, all the Web browsing is a bonus as I was buying a reader. I just downloaded the Kindle to PC and within minutes, all of my downloads appear on my PC. It is a nice back up system.

        The DX also rotates it screen when you rotate the Kindle, so when viewing Websites, you are seeing it in the way it should be read. Very nice.

        The DX has the larger size, which I like better than portability. I bought a leather cover and carry abig purse so I am fine with the larger size.

        Waiting for the next best thing is going to be frustrating because I suspect these things are just going to keep improving and improving, eventually becoming flexible, totally touch screen, and in color.

    3. Plus, I really think that the Nook beats Kindle because Nook supports ePub. This means I can get library ebooks on a Nook, or read books from other sellers, including Sony. Of course, I can’t use amazon ebooks, but that’s okay. If the Kindle supported other DRMs, I’d probably get one of those, even if the Nook is sexier.

      1. For what it’s worth, I co-own a small press and although we sell paperbacks, by far and away ebooks are our bestselling formats. To that end, I can tell you that although people are making a big hoopla about the ePub format and how all-important it is…we sell very little of it. 90% of our sales are in PDF and PRC (PRC is the Mobipocket format which is, and always has been, readable on the Kindle). LIT is a distant third with HTML after that. And ePUB only accounts for 1-2% of our sales. ePub may be up and coming and become a big deal in the future as the “standard” but right now, it’s not even close.

        With Kindle, you’re not limited to only buying books form the Kindle store. It will read any PRC or PDF ebook purchased anywhere…you just upload them to the Kindle via USB.

    4. Thank you so much Gib for your post. I was stuck on buying a kindle or nook. My friends say that the nook looks like the best, but others said kindle. I’ve been on the B&N’s site and looked at the comparisons between the kindle and nook. I’ve LOVED what I have read so far on the nook. Your review has been the best one I’ve gotten by far. =D

    5. Try before you buy is just marketing. I was just at B & N and one of 3 people trying to get info. We were told if we ordered today it would not ship before Jan 15th and they did not have nor expected to get any in the store for customers to “try before” buying until customer orders were filled.

      One man said he would just stay with his Kindle and the second won’t buy till he tries. We have “tried” a friends Kinlde and will go with it rather than wait for the catch-up by B & N.

      1. I called 2 stores a couple of weeks ago and heard that all stores are supposed to get models to try. The date varies according to store.

        I just tried a Nook at B&N today. My husband and I were able to play with a fully functional unit, and the store-manager was excited about it (though we’ve read enough it was clear we knew more than she did about it- heh. We couldn’t find the micro SD slot, it must be somewhere inside the back of the unit.)

        I tried out a Sony Touch e-reader for a trip to Japan in November (wanted to try the Nook but it wasn’t out yet). Responsivity and page turns seemed pretty fast to me. I was very disappointed with the navigation of the nook. I am not sure if I want to buy an e-book reader without a touch screen. Yes, the non-touch screen does have a bit more contrast, but note-making and highlighting are a pain without the touch screen! It does sound like BN will be working on the navigation issues. And I also fully expect some cool extensions and probably also a web-browser to come out, if not through BN then through the Android community.

        I am still deciding between the Nook and Sony Touch, rather than the Kindle. I may be waiting for Sony’s ereader coming out early 2010.

        I think they’ll add it in later, or that the Android community will.

        I can’t believe any of these devices can hold hundreds of books but don’t support any reasonable organizational structure for them!

        we tried it in store on one word, “months” or something ridiculously simple like that and the Nook dictionary could not find the word. Not sure what that was all about, we were pretty disappointed in general and didn’t try any other words…

        I will say that the responsivity that I saw was perfectly acceptable and I did not see it take multiple seconds to change pages at all.

        Free wi-fi means that SOMEBODY will be adding a browser, whether it’s BN or somebody else.

        I want also to add that the screen and readability is awesome. 🙂

        The touch screen with the Sony reader allows you to draw anything you want right on the screen. Over pictures or text, what have you. I love that and the navigation with the touch screen… something I miss and may be a killer for the Nook for me. I am going to wait a little bit and see the next Sony reader as well as what improvements they make to the Nook Navigation before making a decision.

      2. I pre-ordered the Nook for my wife with the assumption that it would not ship out until Jan. 4th 2010. It was delivered to her on December 30th. She loves it, but my brother-in-law loves his Kindle also. Does the comparisons have to get so heated? With some people it’s like they are in grade school again comparing whose toy is better.

  4. I think Gib’s comments are spot on for US readers. Given that B&N is a Stateside-only store, anyone outside that locale or who travels extensively will be happy – for now – with the Kindle. The Nook resets the bar, however. Looking at the split screen, I cannot help but compare it to a possible PixelQi offering. This would have one screen, be as readable as eInk in one mode and as versatile as the Nook in another. Switching modes should make battery life acceptable. Sony? Apple?

    I tried to log into my Amazon account multiple times yesterday to track my Kindle’s journey to the UK. I lost count of the times I had to give up because it was so slow. This despite the fact that other sites (and even other parts of Amazon) were fine. Given that Amazon operates a substantial third-party cloud business as well as being one of the top sites in the world, there must have ben a lot of people like me hitting that refresh button. It almost seemed like a DDoS attack. Maybe it was just a coincidental snafu but perhaps the International launch was hotter than we could have guessed. Maybe.

  5. Abhi. No free Internet in most countries outside the US. Higher book prices. Expensive Whispernet. No wifi.

    Kindle is the only real game at the moment – and obviously B&N is no threat on the global stage, but the bells are ringing.

    1. The nook has wifi. The 3g is free. It also has a much much larger book library. It’s open platform whereas Kindle is proprietary crap just like Apple.

      The Kindle only has international service on its 2nd iteration. It takes time to set up an international service. B&N is a US store anyways. They don’t need international service.

      1. Jonsie, the wifi and 3g is well and good – there’s no browser though.
        Everyone keeps coming to the much, much larger book library when 1 million out of the ‘million plus’ books are free public domain titles from Google. Those are available to anyone and can be converted for the Kindle.

  6. There are two things I’m still trying to find out. Anyone know:
    1. if it has folder capacity?
    2. if it has PDF reflow or only supports PDF’s formatted for the device?


    1. Lauren, there has been no mention of folders so we don’t know yet.
      PDF reflow – that’s a good question. It’s not in the FAQ.

      Will update if more details come out- However, those two are unknowns at this point.

  7. I called B & N. The answer I got about the PDF reflow issue is that “they don’t know.” The technical support person had never actually touched a Nook and said that they probably wouldn’t be able to answer such questions for a couple of weeks. Very strange.

    1. Unfortunately not that strange considering the status quo for big-company tech support these days. Most of B&N’s tech support probably deals with web site problems, at least until they taste a successful Nook launch and are able to justify the expense of establishing a Nook-specific CS group.

  8. I am visually impaired and am excited about some of the changes I’m seeing in the ereader marketplace. However, noplace do I see any talk of font size availability or clarity. I have seen the Sony and found the font size increase to be inadequate for my particular sight issues. Can anybody tell me what control over font size (minimum pts to maximum pts) is available on any of the Kindle models. I’m very interested in the DX, but my curiosity is peaked by the PRS 900 soon available from Sony. The Nook is too small for me to read no matter the font size as best I can tell.
    Thanks in advance….

    1. Here is the Kindle DX Font Size information (courtesy Brent Newhall) –

      At the largest font size, a capital letter is 3/16″ tall (just under 1/4″). Full character height–from the bottom of a “g” to the top of a “d”–is 1/4″.

  9. I am a Kindle DX owner, and the more I read about the Nook and Sony’s wireless e-reader to be released in Dec 2009, the happier I am about my Kindle DX.

    While the Nook and Sony have memory card expansion and consumer-replaceable batteries – both highly desirable – the Nook does not have web access at all, has shorter battery life, and no tactile keyboard.

    Incidentally, my Kindle DX has native .pdf support which the Nook also will have.

    If I had to do it all over again, the internet access (I enjoy using Wikipedia on my Kindle DX), the longer battery life, and the tactile keyboard win out for me. It would be the Kindle DX again – hands down.

    1. alright i have a question, why do you need to use wikipedia? because in the nook if you don’t know what a word is you click look it up and you select what word it is and it tells you. I see tons of people saying stuff about wikipedia i guess im just lost. why do you need wikipedia?

  10. Regarding the language support, it’s not just English. I always thought that was a mistake and they really meant Latin-1. This seems to confirm it.

    “Your nook supports eBooks written in most Western European Languages, including French, German, Italian, and Spanish. It does not support characters from non-western alphabets. It also displays PDF documents in different languages and different character sets as long as the font is embedded in the file”

  11. I have a Kindle 1. One of my favorite features of the Kindle is it’s ability to connect to the internet anywhere I go. On a recent trip to the midwest (from CA) I could check my email, catch up on news and sports, and check Google or Wikipedia almost everywhere. Nook won’t do that. I wouldn’t trade even. My original Kindle has an SD slot, and I don’t know why they didn’t include one in the Kindle 2, it’s a great feature.

  12. I am in the kindle vs nook shelf, I really appreciate all these messages and reply’s. I was very confused but now am tilting toward the kindle ds side.
    Thank you all, Liz

  13. So with the Nook, do you have to pay for the whispernet or whatever connectivity it will use to download books? and are the book downloads as fast as they are on the Kindle. I have a Kindle 2 and it’s the best thing I’ve ever spend my money on. It actually downloads the books in about 10 seconds, not 30. It’s so fast. I also love the dictionary feature that nobody has mentioned yet. Cursor to any word in the text and you get the definition at the bottom. Click it and get an extensive definition from the built in dictionary. Very cool, does the Nook have that feature?

    1. 3g connectivity is free. However, only for books and the store. No free Internet like the Kindle.
      No idea how fast downloads are as no one has tried it out yet.

      There is a built-in dictionary on the nook – not sure how it works.

  14. I didn’t see anyone mention this, but one of the major complaints with the Kindle is that if it breaks and needs to be replaced or items are deleted the ebook purchases and periodicals saved on the device are lost (ie they would have to be repurchased). The Nook (according to staff at B&N) holds all of your purchases on an offsite server so it can be uploaded again later if deleted or in event of a replacement Nook.

    1. No one mentions that because it’s nonsense. Your purchases from Amazon are in your account and as soon as you register your new Kindle you get them all back instantly.

    2. If B&N staff said that about losing books on Kindle, they are full of bull or simply don’t know. It is not surprising to me as they told MANY inaccuracies while I was demoing the Nook unit. So many in fact, it prompted my to return to the store later that day with a Kindle 2 for a side-by-side look. The most disappointing aspect of what they said? The number of commercial books available. She told me the free public domain books were above and beyond the claimed 1 million books available. Total fabrication. In direct side-by-side searches (including one suggested by the Nook sales person), the Kindle store absolutely BLEW AWAY the Nook store in available titles.

  15. I’ve been looking and I don’t see any answer about lighting, does the kindle ds have any built in or do you have to purchase the hook on light? Does anyone know? thanks, Liz

  16. Uhhh my sister has the kindle 2, the internet is almost useless, unless you only browse a news article, email hook-up is dismal and don’t even try anything with flash, vpn, bank accounts etc. It’s slow and there is only so much to look at with a greyscale screen. It’s ten times easier and faster with my Palm Pre! So thats a wash. Also since the nook is wi-fi enabled I’m betting that international downloads will come shortly. Finally the for the last point, android is an open platform, with both 3g and wi-fi, and a usb, plus exapnsion memory a browser will soon be available. Now I won’t buy either, I’ll wait for the full color screen Sony to come out. Between Kindle and Nook, its a wash….

  17. If you place an e-ink device (Kindle, Sony, B&N) showing a graphic image face down on a flat-bed scanner and scan the screen, will the result be usable? Since e-ink operates via reflected light, I think the answer would be yes…

  18. Interesting! I’m thinking about the crossword puzzles that my wife loves to do that come in the NYTimes. I think you do give up something when you give up a real newspaper — for example the ability to fill in the puzzles in the paper with a pencil right there on your kitchen table — and for example the ability to split a newspaper into its various sections to share around the table. But no medium is perfect, after all. In any event I plan to wait until I see what Apple is bringing out (the widely-rumoured tablet) until I decide which way to jump with my $.

  19. I have been comparing author and title availability between the Nook online store and the Kindle online store, and I am discovering that many of the authors I enjoy and books i want to read are currently only available for the Kindle. when I sent Barnes & Noble a message asking if they were going to expand their offerings, they replied with “it’s up to the publisher.” I am also finding that the ebooks I am looking for are anywhere from 2 to 5 dollars cheaper on the Kindle. I would suggest before you buy either, check to to see if they have the books you currently want, and if future cost is an issue, how much they are charging. At this moment, the Kindle 2 is on my Christmas wish list.

    1. My results were the same. In fact, the sales person at B&N was VERY evasive about how many commercial books were available vs. public domain. She said in a snarky manner, “Books are books”. Anyway, I’m mostly interested in technical and programming books and the Nook didn’t have anything at all for me in my searches, while the Kindle has more than I can possibly buy and read. So the B&N sales person told me to do a search on “Mystery” instead. Results: Nook … little more than 8,000. Kindle … little more than 16,000. Then I did Sci-Fi … Nook was around 3,000. Kindle was around 9,000. B&N Sales Person … that is what I’d call an Epic Fail. I wasn’t just trying to be a pain, I was seriously trying to decide if I wanted the Nook or a Kindle 2 (I am currently borrowing a friends Kindle 2). And not to pick on the Nook .. it had a few good features, but it was lacking some important ones for me … like landscape mode. I use landscape mode to zoom in on technical drawings. There were others. It is apparent that the Nook needs another rev.

  20. I received a Kindle on my birthday this month, and the very next day I had a problem with frozen portions of my screen. I called customer service and they made it super easy to send it back…I received a new one two days later. 4 days later this Kindle also had a portion of the screen frozen. In summary, over the period of one week and a day, two Kindle’s both had the same problem. In addition to this, the software seems a bit archaic. It is slow to change screens, and the cursor cannot keep up with the speed of movement. I really wasn’t impressed overall after the initial excitement wore off. I felt like I was back in the MS Dos age of computers…

    I just pre-ordered a nook a few days ago…I’m eager to see how it compares in these areas.

    1. Based on your observations of the Kindle, I think you will disappointed if you expect the Nook has solved the the “slow to change screens” issue. The reader screen technology is identical and the excitement you might be feeling about having a small color touch screen keyboard and menu might as well wear off when you notice how fast your battery drains.

  21. I was a Kindle early adopter… got the 1st generation one for Christmas 2 years ago. Since then, I have upgraded to the 2nd generation, and got two more for my family (the DX for my mother, for whom the larger size makes large print a better reading experience).

    I believe that you have left one very significant Kindle advantage off the list… it is from Amazon. For people (like me) who are longtime Amazon fans and use Amazon for everything (if I can get it on or through Amazon, I do), the Amazon connection will keep me with Kindle unless something really startling comes out. Pretty sure I can’t be alone in this. I was tempted by the touchscreen and color when I first saw the Nook, but (for now at least) wouldn’t switch as I like doing business with Amazon.

  22. I have a Mac and want to know which ereader is easier to use with my computer. I don’t want to spend that much money and then not be able to use it. I downloaded something from B&N that allowed me to purchase (3 free and 1 I paid for) and read on my mac.
    Do they both work on Mac?

    1. Kindle lets you connect your kindle to the mac and transfer files. Kindle for Mac is a feature that is supposed to release sometime in the next few months and that will let you read on your Mac.

      Currently only B&N supports reading on the Mac.

      How often would you be reading on your eReader and how often on your Mac? By when would you buy an eReader. Kindle for Mac ough to be out within the next 2-3 months. Nook is now slated for January 11th release so you could pick based on what eReader you prefer.

  23. Nook has that annoying 2nd screen which seems distracting and takes up precious screen real estate. I’d rather just have one bigger screen for reading as with the Kindle and Sony Reader.

    1. readster, the screen size of the nook is the same as kindle and sony reader touch – all three use the 6″ eInk screen. Sony adds a touch layer to enable touch functions.

  24. And who cares about lending a book for 14 days, with the Sony Reader, the content is DRM free so you can just give it to your friend.

  25. Does anyone know the difference between kindle 2 and the not yet out kindle 3, which is suppose to be out late January 2010. I want to order the 2 but I want info on the difference. Thanks, Liz

  26. I went today to B&N and the the Nook is heavy. Cool, but heavy. I am reading Jordan’s Wheel of Time series which are big 700+ page paperbacks and it was heavier than that. So, the reviews of it being a hardback weight are accurate. It felt like a little metal plate. I would like to see a smaller battery…capable of say only 2500 page turns and save 2-3 ounces before I get one. The display was nice at most angles with very dark gray text on light grey background. It was pleasing to view. The Jordan book font is small (smaller than the smallest of the 2 Nook fonts also I don’t know if each book has a seperate font set) and has 40 lines per page the Nook at it’s smallest font was 27 lines. I would guess if read it on the Nook would be 1200 pages. I should have checked. I bought a book on the display model and it was in the Library before I could get to that area. The page turn speed was fine. The click to turn the pages… I would like it to be less pressure.

  27. Any word yet on the Sony PRS-900BC? It’s supposed to be released this week. I’m curious since it has a screen larger than 6″ — I”m holding out for a 7 to 8 inch screen. Also, your readers might be interested in

    It compares e-book prices among Amazon, Sony, B&N and others. In its blog, they report that Amazon’s prices are regularly the lowest, while Sony’s are the highest. This makes me reluctant to buy one.

  28. Deciding between K & N, leaning torwards the K, but one question. I live in cell hell with no cell reception and was wondering if I buy books where I can get service, are the books on the Kindle permently so I can read at home where there is no signal? I am sick and am bed ridden a lot of the time and at home so I need to know if I will be able to read the books at home after purchasing somewhere I have service.

    1. Yes Chris, Once you buy the book it’s on your Kindle unless you delete it.

      So you can download books and then have them on your Kindle to read at home.

      If you have a PC you can also buy on the PC and transfer it to your Kindle.
      You can also keep a back-up copy on your PC.

  29. i am also in the market for a ereader but since i am military and currently stationed in germany i guess i will have to have a kindle since ive read that i can not download books here. i like the whole idea of adding more storage and extra batteries i wonder if amazon is going to t ry to fix any of that.

    1. Ashley – Amazon is unlikely to add an SD card slot for extra memory.
      Ditto on batteries.

      I check forums all the time plus the blogs and kindle news and have never heard of Kindle batteries dying out i.e. it’s rather unlikely. Wouldn’t worry about the battery part.

      In germany txtr is an option too – However, they are sold out so that probably rules them out for the moment.

  30. Did not see a response to Liz’s question below:
    Does anyone know the difference between kindle 2 and the not yet out kindle 3, which is suppose to be out late January 2010. I want to order the 2 but I want info on the difference.

    Any info on this?

    1. No details about the Kindle 3 are known.
      Keep in mind that the Kindle can be returned up to 30 days after purchase date plus it holds its value well.
      So there’s not much risk in getting one and seeing whether you like it.

      No details or rumors about Kindle 3 are out so can’t help you on differences.

  31. My wife and I ordered Nooks the day they were available and gave them to each other for Christmas. They were such a disaster that we took them back to Barnes and Noble the day after Christmas.

    In anticipation of getting the device, I bought an ebook and startedreading it on my iPhone. I could never open this same book on my Nook. It got stuck on “formatting.” I looked online and did all kinds of trouble shooting, such as deleting the book and re downloading it. Nothing worked. I bought another book, just to see if it was a fluke.
    This time I was only able to download the book after 24 hours of trying. Once I did download it, everything was still a mess. I told the machine to take me to chapter 2 and it put me in the middle of the book on a random page. I could go on about the many bugs but they are well documented in the NYT and WSJ reviews.
    encountered, but I think you already know.

  32. When I first started considering buying an eReader I was seduced by the design of the nook. Obivoulsy the color touchscreen grabbed my attention, but I also like that the nook’s frame is shorter and less wide. As a result the screen fills up a greater porportion of the face of the device, which makes its screen seem larger than it is (conversly, Kindle’s taller, wider frame makes its screen look smaller than it is).

    But now I’ve decided to buy a Kindle because Amazon has a larger and cheaper selection of books. Book selection is the most essential factor for me. You could have the most techonologically advanced eReader in the world, but if you have little content to read, what’s the point?

    The Kindles access to Wikipedia is also a strong selling point for me, but I wouldn’t say it’s essential.

    I couldn’t care less that the Kindle’s memory is limited to 2GB. I plan to use it only to read books. I won’t be putting any mp3s on it, so the memory is more than enough.

    I also don’t care about lending books. Few of my friends are bibliophiles like me, and the ones who are don’t have eReaders.

    I do have two concerns about the Kindle: 1.)t the contrast of the screen is not as good as other devices, and 2.) they could be coming out with a new version anytime now. So I think I’ll wait until February.

    Question: Everyone complains that the Kindle has no way to organize your collection (folders, bookshelves, or whatever), and most commentators say that could be remied easily through a firmware update. So what hasn’t Amazon sent out a firmware update with folders? Has the company made any public comments on the issue? Also, could the contrast issue be addressed through a firmware update?

    1. Folders are slated for mid 2010. Amazon should have incorporated them in right from the start.
      Contrast issue could be fixed through a firmware update. Amazon would have to make changes to how they do anti-aliasing for smalle font settings and give the option to users to bold all text by default.
      Contrast would be better. As it is the contrast is good enough.

  33. I want an ereader so I can read. I don’t want to go on the web, or transfer files, etc. I just want to download a book and be able to read it. I am looking for the one that can download a book the easiest and quickest (I am technically challened) and has the clearest screen to read. Both sites seem to have an extensive amount of books for along the same price. I don’t need to highlight text or write anything. Can someone please point me in the best direction for an ereader for reading only?


  34. when is there going to be a new and improved kindle coming out? which is the better buy for your money the kindle or the nook?

    1. at the moment the Kindle is the better buy. A new kindle might be out around mid Feb or Fall.
      There’s a 30 day return period so if you get a Kindle around Jan 15-20 you should be covered for a mid-Feb Kindle 3 release.

  35. Kindle strait from the box displays perfectly polish alphabeth with typical polisch diacritic letters.
    After hack it also support russian cirilic letters.
    I just sold K2 and buying DX.

  36. For anyone considering the nook, please read about my

    First I had to wait about 30 days for my nook to
    arrive. It worked as advertised at first
    but began having problems after the third recharge cycle. The nook was stuck in the screen shot mode and
    would not respond. After holding for 45
    minutes, B&N tech support was able to walk me through rebooting the reader. After a full recharge, again the nook would
    not turn on at all. I tried everything
    recommended by tech support and nothing worked. How does a new item with a new battery stop working like this? Why doest it take 45 minutes each time you
    call their help desk?

    I decided to ask for the manager and request a refund. Although they agree to fully refund me the
    price of the nook, all accessories and membership fee, they would not refund
    the ebooks I had purchased. I can tell
    you that the service managers are anxious to get unhappy customers off the
    phone. I suggested that I receive a
    store credit to purchase the physical books in their stores which they refused
    to do. They were just happy to get me
    off the phone.

    I can’t remember the last time I such a terrible experience with
    a retailer. They are not prepared to
    handle the tech issues and not committed to providing good customer service.

    Bottomline is that if you are considering the Nook, buyer

  37. One major thing about the Nook that I prefer over the Kindle is that any content I put on it is MINE, and B&N won’t make it magically disappear as has happened to Kindle users in the past. In addition, with Amazon having its little fight with Macmillan over pricing of ebooks (Amazon wants new releases to stay $9.99 and Macmillan wants them to reflect the hardcover prices…and Amazon pulled all the books both digital and analogue that Macmillan publishes over it, thus harming the authors who depend in part on their book sales), I’m not willing to support Amazon at all at this point.

    The most difficult thing about using my Nook was getting it out of the packaging…which was kinda a pain, but do-able.

  38. I just returned my Nook, I am so dissapointed. We are not in the 3g network so I connected to my home wireless and it would not register! I am thinking I will go with a Kindle now, but am wondering if anyone knows can I transfer my ebooks from Barnes and Nobles onto my Kindle via my computer and will it read them? Thanks

  39. I want to purchase a gift for my 16 year old grand-daughter and I do not know if I should get a Nook or Kindel. Is there a Kindel 3

    1. Marlene – there isn’t a Kindle 3 yet.
      Nook and Kindle are both good choices.
      If you’d like the Free Internet browsing and wikipedia access then the Kindle is better.
      If you think your niece will prefer having that LCD screen at the bottom then get the Nook.
      There’s not much difference.

  40. My new Nook freezes up on occasion and it takes some time to get it working again.
    BN has apparently raised its prices.
    Nook does not let you lend all books, only the ones it chooses.
    Nook could have a list of just the .99/free books rather than have you look through its huge listing.
    I’m thinking of giving the thing back to BN.

  41. I do not have an ereader but am looking to buy soon. Since I have been reading ebooks between my pc and netbook, I have hundreds of ebooks stored on a USB flash drive in organized folders.

    Since none of the ereaders (Kindle, Nook or Sony) offer ability to organize purchases in folders, can I directly connect my USB flash drive to any of the ereaders to upload my ebooks as needed? (For travel convenience, instead of using a USB cable to computer.)

  42. i think this is a great, very helpful review, but it should be updated. im guessing it was done before the new year, and the nook has added a lot more features. i always liked the kindle, but all in all the nook has stolen my attention and is my choice as an e-reader

        1. Diane, going through the new features at the moment. It’s very close.
          Will update the post after trying out the upgrade some more.
          The browser is a killer feature.

  43. If I download a book onto my computer in pdf format, which of the current book readers — Kindle, Nook, i-Pad (with Reader app) — will allow me to import the book file directly from the PC (with Vista OS)?

  44. Wow, that is such a great review! This helped me decide which one to get! Its so detailed and everything. Thanks!

  45. Hi guys,

    Here are several arguments, why I regret my nook purchase:
    -the choices of ebook is more limited on the nook (a lot of books, I would have like to purchase are available on kindle but not on the nook)
    -the prices of ebook: if we except the #1 bestsellers, most the book are more expansive on nook and not by a small margin (40 USD for kindle and 56 for nook …. just one example!)

    So if you intend to read more than just the #1 bestsellers, you’ll be better of with a kindle.


  46. I know that this might be a dumb question but I’ll ask it anyway. I like to write books as well as read them. I am using a HP pda smart phone that has the smart phone vs of Microsoft Word. Do any of these Ereaders have that or something like this? Thanks.


      1. Darn, that let’s me out. I just wanted a bigger screen without having to spring for a tablet computer. That durn I book is the price of a laptop!

  47. I received a nook for Christmas 2009- after 4 months the plastic case cracked at the page turning button. B&N immediately replaced it. Replacement lasted 2 months and plastic cracked same exact spot. Third Nook is now frozen. I am debating if I should switch to the Kindle – but I now have a library of 40 books on B& N – can the kindle “accept” b&n books?

  48. I purchased a Nook the middle of May this year and have been extremely disappointed. Over 2 1/2 months, I have had to replace the battery twice. The first time my local B & N replaced. The second time, B & N shipped replacement battery (took @ a week). I had also reported three times to local representative that my Nook would periodically delete my account information, requiring me to re-register my Nook. Was told “that can’t happen” or “never heard of that happening”. Three weeks ago my Nook died. I mailed it back to to B & N as required for replacement. Received new Nook yesterday. It has a malfunctioning battery. B & N informs me that they will ship me another battery. Bottom line: in 2 1/2 months my new Nook has been nonfunctional for 4 weeks. WHAT A RIP-OFF!

  49. Just one question, do you really need a light to read in kindle in the dark; or it is enough with the device backlight?

  50. With the brand new updates and low prices, it’s still hard to decide. I think I’m leaning towards the Nook because of the ability to borrow from libraries.

    Do you know exactly how this works? Like is there any fee at all (usually)? Do libraries have bestsellers available? Does it work the same as a regular library book, like you check it out, and if someone else wants it, they have to put it on “hold”? I am in PA and I think I have access to the Free Library of Phila, but I can’t quite figure it out yet.

    Also, do you think they will ever come out with a backlight feature?

  51. kindle has a lighted bookcover for $59. I noticed nook has a separate light that clips on. both work well. nook is a little less expensive. I will make my mind up by Friday, sept 3rd. I am buying an e-reader for my wife and she wants a nook. I have researched and compared till I am dizzy. i think kindle is a good deal. just not sure.

  52. Very good comparison. Though even the update is dated now (Nook color, plus price drops and Kindle 3, plus major performance and feature updates on both the Wifi/3G Nook and the Kindle 3), the basic idea that which is “best” depends very much on what a buyer needs or feels comfortable with still holds.

  53. was looking at getting an ereader for my college classwork. i like the fact that the nook has the color option, but seems that the kindle is edging it out. for mainly scholastic use, which do you suggest? i’m majoring in sociology, minoring in criminal justice, so i can probably get away without the color feature. i need to decide within 10 days. any suggestions? is there a kindle 3 coming out soon? (and if these are repeat questions, i apologize. too many posts to read through.) and thanks for the great comparison. this is what i was searching for.

    1. You should check what textbooks you need for your courses, and then whether these are available in Kindle Store and Nook Store.

      Nook Color has color.
      Nook only has a color tiny screen for navigation.
      Kindle 3 is black and white.

      You’ll probably be deciding between Kindle and Nook Color.

  54. wait, the kindle 3 is out already? how did i miss that? is there anywhere i can actually physically look at one? is the only way to purchase a kindle through amazon?

    1. You can look at it at Target, Staples, and Best Buy. Amazon has videos as does this blog – If you click on Kindle Review Videos at the very top – there’s a link on that page titled ‘Kindle 3 Videos’.

      1. My husband got me a nook for xmas…but I keep comparing it to kindle wifi…kinde just seems easier to use for me. The touch screen on nook is difficult for a non-techie to use. I have compared til I’m blue and can’t decide. Can someone give me some very basic comparison/pro and con between the 2? Use for me is mainly just to read books

        1. Just take a look at this Kindle WiFi vs Nook WiFi comparison. For Nook – just add on that it has 3G delivery. Rest is same between Nook and Nook WiFi.

          There’s not really much of a difference. If you want library books you need to stick with Nook. If you want text to speech (only available for some books) and an easier to use device, then Kindle WiFi.

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