When times are tough economically, it’s always good to see changes that lighten the load on the pocketbook, and I’m doubly glad to see changes that encourage folks to read (not just because I make my living from people buying books, but reading is food for the mind). So my hat’s off to Barnes and Noble for slashing the prices of their UK Nook ebook readers.
The current prices for the Nook ebook reader line for UK customers are:
- Nook Simple Touch: £29
- Nook SImple Touch GlowLight: £69
- Nook HD: £129
- Nook HD+: £179
It appears that the Nook is finally going to try and give the Amazon Kindle a run for its money in the UK market. With the Kindle line starting at £69 for the basic Kindle, £109 for the Paperwhite, and £159 for the Kindle Fire, the Nook is now more competitively priced, with the Simple Touch seriously undercutting the basic Kindle.
With regard to book selection, it’s hard to go wrong either way. Both retailers have more books available than any of us are going to read in a hundred lifetimes, both types of ereaders allow you to upload and read DRM-free content from other sources like Smashwords, and the high-end models of both lines have a lot of extra functionality beyond reading ebooks.
But if you’ve been wishing you could get an ebook reader and have been put off by the price, it’s hard not to give some serious consideration to the Nook Simple Touch at it’s new price (reduced by a whopping £50), which is equivalent at today’s exchange rate to $45 (note: the US price for the basic Kindle with embedded advertising is $69). That’s about nine Starbucks Java Chip Frappuccinos that I’d have to give up to pay for it. I could probably do that, and maybe lose a couple pounds in the process.
Now, if you’re still on the fence and even that £29 for the Nook Simple touch is a daunting prospect, remember that if you have a smart phone, tablet, or PC, you can get free apps from Amazon UK, Barnes and Noble UK, Kobo, Google, and others to use for reading. Then you just buy the book from your particular retailer and read it on your phone or whatever (for example, I do most of my reading on my iPhone using the Kindle app). Which way – a dedicated ereader like the Nook or an app on your phone – is better? That’s a highly personal preference, although as a general rule I’ll say that reading on something like a Nook or Kindle device is easier on the eyes, and the devices tend to have more functionality than the apps. I just started to read on my phone because I have it with me all the time, and even if you have an ereader, having the app on your phone is great for when you have to kill some time waiting in line for a Java Chip Frappuccino.
So, if you’re in the UK and have been hemming and hawing about getting an ebook reader, take a look at the Nook – it might just be for you…
P.S. When you get your Nook, don’t forget to grab some good Nook books to go with it!