Barnes & Noble's Nook hasn't yet reached the popularity level of its competitor Amazon's Kindle, particularly after Amazon released the Fire last Christmas. But the Nook HD will give the Fire, and maybe even the iPod Mini, a real run for their money.
But what it will eventually all come down to is customer service and features specific to the devices. While the Nook HD is impressive, Barnes and Noble doesn't offer music or movie services like Amazon does, a feature that will keep the users spending even more money even after they've shelled out for their new tablet.
1. It's Lighter Than the Nook E-Reader
The Nook HD is about same size as the first Nook e-ink e-reader, but that's where the similarities end. The newer LCD tablet is lighter than the old e-reader, at only 11.1 ounces.
2. It's Easier to Hold than the Kindle Fire
The Nook HD is slightly wider than a Google Nexus 7, at 7.7 inches tall, 5 inches wide and .43 inches thick, but it's a lot narrower than the Kindle Fire. This makes a big difference if you have smaller hands because you might find the Fire a bit difficult to hold, but the Nook HD, since it's a similar size to larger smartphone, just right.
3. It Doesn't Have a Camera
The Barnes & Noble Nook HD is comfortably light, if you don't mind that it's light on features. Check out our review: cnet.co/OP8nLs
— CNET (@CNET) November 3, 2012
The Kindle Fire, the Nexus 7 and other similar seven-inch devices have cameras, which contributes into making them bigger. But most people don't hold up their tablets when they want a photo, since they use their tablets more for reading.
4. The Buttons are Easier to Find
The Nook HD's power and volume buttons are more visible and easier to find and the Nook's home button makes it easier to navigate.
5. It's Got a Lot of Power
The Nook HD has a 1.3 GHz dual-core processor, a full gigabyte of RAM and, and a higher resolution screen than the Kindle Fire HD, and the screen is laminated so there's very little screen reflection.
6. The Nook Shipped with Some Audio Issues
Barnes & Noble is promising an online update to address audio issues in the Nook HD, but meanwhile, if you really want to hear your music or movie, get a set of ear buds, because the SRS TruMedia speakers aren't nowhere as good as the Dolby speakers in the Kindle Fire HD. Instead of updating the audio after the gadget came out, Barnes & Noble should have ironed out the sound problems before they released the tablet.
7. Both the Nook HD and the Fire HD have Android
Neither one of these will completely beat the iPad because they feature Android, when the world's preferred system is Apple's iOS. But both tablets take full advantage of their Android operating systems, and the Nook HD is a very intuitive device as a result.
8. The Nook HD Uses User Profiles
Unlike other tablets, you can set up individual profiles on the Nook HD. This is great if you are have children using your tablet, because you can set password protection and keep your little ones safe online. This way, all they can see is their own books, movies and games, and you won't get a surprise shopping bill just for letting your kid use your tablet.
9. The E-Mail and Web are Easy to Read
Both the Nook and Fire HD have clear, easy-to-read screens, but Barnes & Noble offers key apps that give your Mail, Apps and Library a permanent place, making the Nook easy to use.
10. It's Priced Very Reasonably
The Nook HD, which features 16 gigabytes of storage, costs $200, like the Amazon Kindle Fire. However, the Fire, at the same price, includes sleep-state ads. However, you'll have to shell out another $20 for an AC adapter if you buy the Fire, while the Nook comes with that, is ad free and works on Wi-Fi.