The publishing world was abuzz yesterday with news of B&N’s new ebook reader, the Nook (seriously, where do they get these names?).  And from everything I’ve seen and read, it looks pretty darn cool. 

The B&N site does a nice comparison of Nook vs. Kindle, but I’ve recently been looking at upgrading my Palm to an iPod Touch.  So I did my own comparison:

                                                      iPod                           Nook

  • Ebooks                          yes                               yes
  •      epub                          no                                yes
  •     eReader                    yes                               yes
  •     Kindle                        yes                               no
  • Music                             yes                               yes
  • Movies                          yes                                 no
  • Word doc                     yes*                               no
  • pdf                                  yes*                              yes
  • wireless download    yes                               yes
  • Wi-fi capable              yes                                 yes
  • operating sys             Mac                              Android (Google)
  • eInk (good for sun)   no                                yes
  • backlit (good for dark) yes                          no
  • screen size                     3.5″ diag                      6″ diag.
  • loan books                  no                                   yes
  • price                         $199 8G/$299 32G       $259
  • expansion slot          no                                   yes
  • replaceable bat.       no                                   yes
  • Web browsing           yes                                   ?

* requires app at additional charge

The biggest questions for me come down to screen size and backlit vs. eInk.  I’m having a real hard time deciding because on one hand, I love to read on our sunny terrace (which gives backlit devices a terrible glare), but I also like reading in bed and not having the light on to bother the DH (eInk requires a separate light source). 

Also, how functional is the Nook at web browsing in a wireless hotspot? 

The Nook is available for preorder now and will start shipping Nov. 30. At that time, it will also be in stores for customers to demo.