Barnes and Noble e-Reader versus Amazon Kindle for PC

The Nook by Barnes and Noble

Kindle by Amazon

I have both a Barnes and Noble e-reader for PC as well as a Kindle e-reader for PC. I wish I had a Kindle. Once upon a time I wished I had a Barnes and Noble Nook for comparison purposes, but I have to say this is no longer the case.

I have an extensive library of Kindle for PC books. It is a collection I’ve been building for just over a year. Some of the books I purchased for little to nothing, but a great many of them I purchased at a price that wasn’t much cheaper than traditionally published books. Considering the current state of affairs with Barnes and Noble and their possible upcoming sale, I wouldn’t want to own much  more than the hundred or so books I already own on my Nook for PC. I don’t want to find myself missing valuable parts of my literary collection, if Barnes and Noble does, in fact, go under.

Having said this there are differences between the two formats which are worth noting. Generally speaking the Barnes and Noble formats provide some introduction to the text. There are notes and historical asides which help bring the text to life. The Barnes and Noble editions also generally have a hyper-linked table of contents, a feature that is almost without exclusion lacking from the Amazon versions, even of the same titles. Barnes and Noble e-Readers generally have a link to the ISBN of the book, or if the ISBN is lacking it links back to the Barnes and Noble website where the aforesaid information is generally available.

The Barnes and Noble e-reader is friendlier to the eyes than the Amazon Kindle e-reader, of course I can only speak for the PC versions of both e-readers and not for the Nook and Kindle themselves as I have no familiarity with either of these reading appliances.

In general both the Nook for PC and the Kindle for PC feature the ability to scroll using the page down feature. There is one distinct drawback to the Nook for PC, or any Nook for that matter. Now that Barnes and Noble may be facing sale or hostile takeover where does that leave the majority of Nook users? Thankfully, both my money, and my free books are invested in Kindle, but what about all those readers who have invested small fortunes in books for their Nooks. Will they even be able to access the books they have already purchased? This is a problem with proprietary software. It is available for use only on one software system like Amazon’s Kindle, Barnes and Noble’s Nook, Apple’s iPad, or Google’s e-reader. Gone are the days of simply download and go Microsoft reader – which worked on any Microsoft compatible computer, or Adobe’s .pdf reader, which is still an industry standard for across the board e-reading capability.

The diversity of e-readers available today has proven one thing – nothing lasts forever and it is perhaps time to look once again toward developing a universal e-reader with different companies selling different titles within the market and with classics being available through all the companies. Paperbacks are non-exclusive in format and yet every year there is considerable competition among major booksellers to see who can sell the most, and the best versions of paperbacks. Maybe it’s time we put the same principle to work in major market e-books.

The Amazon Kindle, can hold a multitude of books. It is slim and can easily be carried any place a book could go. It has the drawback of proprietary software, but one can hope that given time this will change. Barnes and Noble’s Nook is on its way out. The postmortem has been conducted and all that remains are the findings as to the cause of death. Will it be inability to keep up with the times or the demise of the once proud enterprise of Barnes and Noble?

Amazon’s Kindle is on the nest and laying golden eggs, while the Nook has fallen out of the nest and into the dung heap where its untimely demise has barely been noticed, except, perhaps by Nook readers.

Reader Feedback

4 Responses to “Barnes and Noble e-Reader versus Amazon Kindle for PC”

  • Tracy Riva says:

    I understand your feelings but have found that at least in the PC versions the Nook has neither the choice nor versatility of Amazon’s Kindle for PC application.

  • Tracy Riva says:

    Barnes and Noble’s market shares have been steadily declining for the past two years resulting in shareholder dissatisfaction. It is pressure from shareholder’s that is pushing Barnes and Noble toward a sale. Yes, the company would rather go private than see itself up on the proverbial chopping block. There is a current war being waged between the two major shareholder’s regarding which will end up buying the company SHOULD it go up for sale. The stockholder’s will have a major impact on this decision at their September meeting.

  • David says:

    My understanding is that the sale of B&N is not due to financial distress but out of a desire to go private to avoid the hassles of wall street traders devaluing their stock as they transition to being a tech company. In addition, the format B&N uses for it’s books is epub which is an
    Industry standard and the drm is in partnership with adobe and is also shared by Sony and kobo. So, it is only amazon and the kindle which are the dead end purchases.

  • chuleta says:

    I think the notices of the nook’s death have been exaggerated.

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