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back to article Barnes & Noble's ebook reader takes its bow

To the surprise of no one, Barnes & Noble has unveiled a $259 Android-based ebook reader known as the Nook. Word had already leaked onto the web, but the American book seller officially announced the US-only device with a press release this afternoon. In an apparent effort to appeal to the world's Google lovers, B&N bills its …

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Unhappy

US-only

Looks quite nice. Unfortunately, the B&N eBook store only seems to be capable of selling to people with US addresses! So effectively useless over here.

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Happy

@US-only

Don't worry. It'll reach your shores in about 30 years or so. Whats really frustrating is I'm British and have lived here in the USA for a few years now and I 'Still' cant buy music downloads or books from Amazon. Luckily I have a wife who can. Marry an American! Drastic, but it works.

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Thumb Down

from the website:

"Load your own photos to create personal screensavers."

e-ink displays don't need screen savers...

What they don't say is whether the colour display can be turned off while reading. If it cannot, it's pretty much a shoe-in that a few months down the road they'll be serving up ads over it. It also has no stylus input, so forget about intuitively marking your books, we're apparently still stuck with the idiotic "write a note and attach to this page" construction instead of some quick jotting (we have the technology for instant response touch screens, why do we not use this?)

That also means it's not a notepad. Why is everyone making ereaders by starting with "what does the word reader imply" and then ignore everything else people do with a book-shaped paper medium.

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Paris Hilton

nook E-book ...

anybody else read that as nookie book ?

Paris because she'd be in it (on it?)

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Happy

You Can't Fool Me!!

We took a look

We saw a Nook

On his head

he had a hook

On his hook

He had a Book

On his Book

was "How to Cook"

We saw him sit

and try to cook

He took a look

at the book on the hook

But a Nook can't read

so a Nook can't cook

SO...

What good to a Nook

is a hook cook book?

...With apologies to Dr Suess...Yes, we got the joke of the name whoever picked it!

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Anonymous Coward

Cute

But I still don't see the point.

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Getting there....

A Mazda MX5 to the Kindle's Lada. This has just about good enough tech at a reasonable price. As a heavy book consumer, as soon as someone comes up with an all-you-can-eat library/subscription model, I'll leap in like a sunburnt salmon.

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Some sense at last

Finally someone has realised that one downside of how ebooks work is you cannot lend them. So good for B&N realising that needed changing. Now if they can only build a second hand ebook store and actually price them according to the savings they make from not having to print, store, transport etc the paper book then it will all be good.

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Bronze badge
FAIL

No search?

Still no text search and annotations? I cannot see it in the specs.

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Silver badge

Now what about standards support?

I hope the B&N reader is more standards compliant than the Amazon one. I really don't understand why anyone would pay full whack for a device which ties you to one store and one proprietary file format. Want to read other formats? Tough shit, or rather, pay Amazon $$$ to mangle the file into a format the device should support by default. Want to transfer your books to a new device made by someone else?

Perhaps if such a device were subsidized it may be understandable if they were proprietary, but the reality is there are far more open readers out there for similar prices. I don't even understand why publishers can even tolerate the current situation. A single industry wide platform for ebook delivery and consumption ultimately benefits everyone. Lots of competing mutually exclusive formats confuses everyone and suppresses the whole market.

In the mean time, support for .txt, .rtf, .epub, .pdf, .html and .pdf should be a base requirement for anyone after an ereader device.

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Joke

@US-only

But if it's available to people with US addresses that's the whole world covered anyway! Well, at least in American eyes...

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Agree with Slabman

this is getting somewhere near what I want from an eBook reader.

I want:

- whiter background than the currently murky grey

- magazine subscriptions

- colour (though I can live without that for this generation or 2 of devices)

- Find (by on-screen keyboard)

- highlighting capability (by touch or stylus, not buttons)

- no DRM

- ability to accurately render PDF and CHM docs

- Realistic pricing of eBooks / eMags, not deadtree price + surchange for presumed piracy. In other words, not the rip-off iTunes model

I don't want:

- Wifi that eats battery for no useful purpose - I'm happy to download on my PC and connect the ebook reader to it. How many people *really* find themselves stuck somewhere with nothing to read and *need* to download a book from the WiFi hotspot, *right now*? If these people actually exist, I'm not one of them

- ebooks that cost a large portion of the price of the deadtree version (eg 100+% in the Waterstones/Sony model)

- buttons. Any buttons at all (well, except an on/off, and even that should just be by closing a cover on it)

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Thumb Up

US-Only-ish.

I want one, so badly I'm probably going to just pay to import it if they don't seem to be launching a UK model.

Doesn't really matter to me about being able to use their eBook store, or the 3g, it's got WiFi and a USB connection so it's perfect. Plus if it's based on Android there'll no doubt some clever hackers building in functionality straight off.

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@Mike Kamermans

There's a demo video of this in action floating round youtube and they do show that the colour screen can be switched off.

It's an interesting device, but they're definitely going to have to reconsider the name for the UK market!

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Anonymous Coward

Kindle? Nook? Ugh. Nasty plastic. Sony Touch? Now we're talking!

Creakingly full of pdf files (although I'll be careful to say that more carefully after yesterday's phone call to my mother) works like a charm, just drag and drop onto memory card or the reader, bingo, hundreds or thousands of books in your hand. Got dictionary, search, highlight, typed or written notes, stylus input, scalable text even in pdfs, all rather fabulous.

AC because none of my books are DRM-infested. I snagged most of them from various friendly pirates. Most of them I already own so I refuse to pay a tenner to re-buy them. I can't read the 'real thing' any more because of my disabilities, but this thing is amazing and has saved me from a life full of terrible audio books. Just wish I hadn't had to buy it from WHSmith, who don't seem to realise that having a web presence means you can't work a four and a half day week.

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FAIL

Why do these wrtetched ebook readers...

have to use pages? I mean, that's a rescriction imposed by the printing press. If you're reading from an Autocue you don't want to have to turn pages, so why should you do it in an ebook? Surely it would be much better if the text scrolled smoothly upwards at the speed you were reading?

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