Every book reader dreamed about this moment where you can have multiple books on you without carrying heavy baggage. Whether it’s expert literature, comics, novels, or journals, you can keep all of that very close to you at any point in time. This battle we will talk about, the one between Amazon and Barnes & Noble, Kindle vs. Nook, seems like it’s going on for centuries.
Since you are here, you already know what Nook and Kindle are and what you can use them for. Most of these e-reading devices are designed to make your life easier, not with design but with technology in it. Of course, you won’t take a 200 gram heavier device just because you like it more, but you should consider some other aspects. Today, we are mainly comparing the most important part of these devices, which is software.
I could already tell you which one is my personal favorite, but I also need to give you a valid reason for that conclusion.
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What is the first step when you want to use any media device these days? To unlock it. With Nook, this procedure of unlocking from sleep mode is pretty much frustrating. It’s the same thing as having 25 characters password that you need to type in every 10 minutes to access some files. After pressing the home button or power button, you need to make an extra swipe on the screen to unlock it to get out of sleep mode. There is no specific reason for this step to be there, but still, that’s part of it, and you should get used to it. On the other hand, with Kindle, if you are not purchasing an ad-free bundle, you will experience the same thing, where you need to swipe anywhere on the screen. If you want to give $20 more for the ad-free version, you’ll have this procedure shortened, and after pressing the home or power button, you’ll be directly on your home screen.
If we consider that readers are calm people, who embrace those moments of stillness and peace of mind, they won’t be frustrated by this, we should probably list other aspects to help you choose.
That’s what most people do care about, and it’s clutter on a home screen. On Nook, you will see suggestions for books all over the place. Actually, there is no place on the home screen where it shows only books that you purchased. Wherever you go, you are bombarded with book suggestions. On Kindle, you have the option to filter the list on your home screen, and it will just show you the books you have purchased. But to be fair, you’ll have the same settings on Kindle as well after unboxing. The advantage is that you can go to the device settings and switch book suggestions off.
Another crucial thing for every e-reader is navigation and ease of getting around different menus.
What Nook does is that they have five tabs at the bottom of the screen. The first tab should be reserved for your books, but as we just mentioned, it includes a bunch of other books mixed into your library. Even after turning off all these features in the settings, it still shows recommendations, which can be annoying. The second tab is a shop, which is understandable. That’s where you are searching for the books you already know that you want to buy, not suggested ones. The third tab strictly opens a book you are currently reading, which we find very interesting. They dedicated that part only to the active book, and this way, you will never forget where you ended the reading session. The fourth tab is again focused on exploring other books and samples to make you purchase something else, rather than what you really want to read. The last tab is the search button, whose purpose is obvious.
On Kindle, it’s just a bit different. They don’t have tabs at the bottom, but a whole lot of buttons at the top.
I prefer this because you can be wholly focused on your books once you turn off that home screen view. You have a straightforward menu with settings, stores, Goodreads, and search bar. They are very clearly labeled, and it’s evident what they are used for, compared to Nook, where it’s unclear.
One more thing that is very important on any device is a “Home” button, which Kindle doesn’t have. If you take on any other 2021 devices, you will notice that most devices don’t have a physical home button anymore, but it’s on the screen. On Kindle, after pressing the “Back” button, you will be back on your home screen after a while, and there is no chance of getting lost.
On the other hand, some screens on Nook can be very confusing since you don’t have an option to go back unless you press the home button.
For someone highlighting important parts the whole time, this is a convenient feature that can save you a lot of time searching for something specific. On Nook, it’s not very optimized for our standards. It can work, but it requires extra work to make it precise. When you hold on to the word, it shows you a dictionary, which is usually a good thing, the expected one. But when you try to highlight the whole sentence, it just goes through words and shows the dictionary without marking the sentence. To mark it, you need to mark one word and then drag the cursor to the end of the sentence, and since it’s not that precise, it can be very unpleasant.
On Kindle, if you drag your finger through the sentence, the device knows what you are doing and highlights the whole sentence very quickly.
When taking notes on Nook, you are limited to using only that device. Compared to that, on Kindle, you can get the app called “Readwise” that is exporting your highlights to a third-party source like “Notion” automatically. The app can as well e-mail you your highlights regularly. On Nook, you can’t do that at all.
Whoever is into tech knows how slow devices can be frustrating. Compare your first phones with the ones you are using now. Everyone will flip and break the device in a matter of hours. That’s why you can’t even compare the speed of these two devices. Nook is extremely slow, and that is the biggest complaint that we have about this device, putting everything else on the side. Opening a book, highlighting something, or even running settings takes forever. Sometimes it takes up to 10 seconds to load a book and not to mention if you have additional pop-ups from suggestions or even ads.
To be fair, Kindle Paperwhite is not much faster, but you feel the difference. On the other hand, Kindle Oasis is very speedy, and that’s one of the devices we would recommend anyone to buy.
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We didn’t mention the pricing throughout the whole article. Nook Glowlight Plus prices are starting from $150 to $200, where a more expensive version gives you better day-to-night reading options, waterproof reading, more prominent display, and membership discounts on all their accessories, devices, or eReaders.
Kindle’s most premium eReader – Oasis, starts from $249 for an 8GB internal memory bundle. If you would like to have more extensive storage of 32GB, you should put on the side $279.
There are available 4G versions of the device that allow you to download free books on limited markets and will cost you $349.
Other versions are cheaper, starting from $89 to $129, but they are not as fast as they should be. If you are used to fast-speed devices, we highly recommend Kindle Oasis.
For a comparison between the two listed devices, you can watch this YouTube video.
Reading should be a very mindful activity that you should do for fun, decompress, something that you enjoy doing. For that purpose, my recommendation would be Kindle Oasis, with an ad-free version, in combination with Readwise, that would be a perfect match for anyone.
If you want to consult further, you can start with this Reddit discussion
What device are you currently using and why? What do you think of these mentioned above would fit you the most and why? Please leave your opinion in the comment section below and let others know what you value about these devices the most.