On Second Thought, the Nook Simple Touch Is the Best eReader

Illustration for article titled On Second Thought, the Nook Simple Touch Is the Best eReader

For ereaders, it's a two-horse game. Kindle and Nook. Nook and Kindle. We've spent a lot of time with the two flagship models (and the non-touch Kindle 4), and we gotta say: We called it wrong. The Nook Simple Touch is the best ebook reader. Here's why:

  • It's matte. A nice matte finish is the easiest way to make a pretty gadget.
  • And the Kindle has horrible silver paint. The Kindle 3 was a nice rugged plastic. The Kindle 4 and Kindle Touch are painted silver, and it chips and scuffs way faster than the old finish, let alone the Nook's.
  • It's better for extended reading. The Nook has the benefit of a wider bezel and an indentation on its back that makes it a hundred times more ergonomic than the flat-backed Kindle.
  • It's got buttons. It's nice having the option, and they require a firm enough press that you won't press them by accident.
  • I actually want to use it. The Kindle is a really nice device, but a lot of its advantages melt away when you get into actual, prolonged, and daily use. It's been months since I've even bothered to charge any of the Kindles, but the Nook is constantly in my bag or my jacket pocket, even though I have the same library on both.
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To be clear, this is focused on the experience of using the ereader as a piece of hardware, and not the ecosystem. Barnes and Noble's digital selection mostly keeps pace with Amazon's, with a few exceptions, but if you're going to bet on one of the two being around for the long haul, you'd definitely edge toward Amazon.

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DISCUSSION

@Kyle Wagner

I'd like to just throw in these rebuts to your bold headlines above.

Sony Reader is Matte

Sony Reader is rugged aluminum - had one for a year - no chips or scratches

Has a wide sided bezel that is easy to hold.

It's got buttons. And an intuitive touch screen.

Nice to use and reads more formats than other e-readers. Not sure why it isn't in the running, even now that the new ones have wifi and are les than 1/2 the price i paid.

I know the sony one isn't on most people's list to even concider, but i think they should, seeing as it isn't as tied down as kindle, and has the same screen and as many, if not more features (audio books even). I have the PRS650, which does almost everything i want to do. i don't mind the non-wifi as i have to plug it into my laptop to charge anyways.. only thing is the price. i paid 350 for it and 6 months later the newer version drops and is half the price...lol.