Barnes and Noble held an event in New York yesterday to unveil a brand new Nook named the Simple Touch Reader. Despite a lot of craze over tablets from Apple and Google, there are many buyers simply looking for a comfortable reading experience. This new model offers a 6 inch eInk display, WiFi connectivity, a two month battery life, and much more in a compact package.
“We set out to design the easiest-to-use, most optimized, dedicated reading device ever created and accomplished it with the All-New NOOK,” said William Lynch, Chief Executive Officer of Barnes & Noble. “Touch makes it simple to use, and the beautifully compact design makes it the most portable eReader in its class.”
The last generation Nook featured a color touch screen at the bottom with a eInk screen above. This was not too efficient when it came to battery life and having two interfaces did not play out so well with users. The Amazon Kindle was probably a safer bet. The new Nook Simple Touch Reader sports a new touch-enabled eInk screen for a better experience. The versatile display technology makes it possible to shop for new books and read purchased items easily.
The new software lets users look up words in a dictionary, highlight paragraphs, adjust font size, switch font style, and search through the book. Barnes & Noble also claims that the display is 50% more efficient than the original Nook — the new model is also 35% lighter and 15% thinner as well. (It weighs 7.48 ounces and is just 4.7 inches thick to be exact.)
There is 2 GB of internal storage which can hold approximately 1,000 books, but microSD expansion for up to 32 GB cards makes storing a lot more possible. While the Nook lacks 3G mobile broadband, users can get online over WiFi connections in B&N stores and AT&T hotspot locations when away from home. Those who want to continue reading on other devices can grab the Nook app for Android, BlackBerry, or iOS devices. Programs are also available for PC and Mac users.
I should note that there is one catch when it comes to battery life. Barnes & Noble rates the two months for when WiFi is off. Leaving it on drops life span on a single charge to just 3 weeks, which is not too bad either. The Nook Bookstore provides access to magazines and newspapers with automatic daily deliver to complement its selection of over two million books. Nook owners can also borrow and lend books with friends for up to two weeks to avoid having to buy a copy.
Those looking to buy one can pre-order for $139 anytime and orders will begin shipping on June 10th. We will try to get our hands on a unit for an in-depth review so stay tuned.