Barnes & Noble yesterday unveiled the NOOK Simple Touch Reader, a smaller and cheaper version of the NOOK Color and an upgraded version of the original Nook E-Reader. Barnes & Noble released this device to help boost its share in the e-book market and to compete against the Amazon Kindle.
Measuring only 5 inches by 6.5 inches and weighing 7.5 ounces, the new NOOK is 6% thinner, 35% lighter and 21% more compact than the original NOOK. It features a 6-inch touchscreen, WiFi connectivity, 2GB internal memory, SD card slot (expandable to 32GB) and boasts a battery life of 2 months on a single charge with the WiFi turned off.
The NOOK Simple Touch Reader is not only lighter in terms of weight but also “lighter” on the customer’s wallet. The original Nook retailed at $259 while the new Nook retails for only $139. It is now available for pre-order and will start shipping for FREE by June 10th and will later be available at Barnes & Noble, BestBuy, Walmart, Books-A-Million, and Staples stores.
For those who are interested in the original model, they are still available for purchase at lower prices (while supplies last) – $119 WiFi model; $169 3G+WiFi model.
The new NOOK is a serious threat to the Amazon Kindle because for the same price it isn’t only lighter (Kindle 8.5 ounces – Nook 7.5 ounces) but it also has a longer battery life (Kindle 1 month – NOOK 2 months) and a touchscreen while the Kindle doesn’t. Aside from that, the new NOOK is also easier to use and navigate because it has fewer buttons (Kindle 38 buttons – NOOK 2 buttons). Users can also avail of FREE WiFi in all Barnes & Noble stores and in over 20,000 AT&T hotspots in the US.
Since it runs on Android, I’m sure it won’t take long after it gets shipped before it gets rooted and installed with custom roms. That would be interesting though since the new Nook has a monochrome display. We’ll see what the folks from XDA developers come up with for this device.
What do you think of the NOOK Simple Touch Reader? Anyone planning on getting one? For those who are planning on getting an ebook reader, which one would you choose – Amazon Kindle or the new Nook? Please share your thoughts.