Thursday, May 26, 2011

Well, It's Official: I Am an e-Reader. Or Have an e-Reader. Or Whatever.

I have waited for months to figure out this whole e-reading thing. In fact, more than a year ago I posted "To Kindle or Not to Kindle... That Is the Question" with a link to a Jen Lancaster article for NPR on the future of e-Readers and paper books. My initial thoughts were: No way! Who would want to read on a computer screen??

Photo from
 Fast forward to a year later, and between Christmas, Valentine's Day and Mother's Day, a majority of my friends and acquaintances received some type of e-Reader. Some got Kindles, some got Nooks. Some even got iPads that they use as e-Readers (among many other purposes, of course). As an Apple lover, my instinct has been that I WANT AN IPAD!

However, to justify the pricetag ($499 and up) versus other e-Readers (like Kindle, starting at $114), the iPad needed to work for me as both an e-Reader and a new computer. I have lots of experience on the iPad's smaller cousin, the iPod touch, so I know that in many ways it does mimic a computer. I can (and do) check my email on the iPod touch. I can check social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook. I can read blogs via Google's e-Reader app. And I can surf the web, looking at any website. The one thing I can't do? Blog.

Blogger and iPod touch are simply not compatible. At least, not yet. Blogger, powered by Google (owner of Android), has no reason to want to make itself compatible with a competitor's product. So at this point in time, you can write blog posts in HTML only on Blogger, and there is no Blogger app for iPod touch. I feel as though they're doing Blogger users who happen to have Apple products a disservice, but there it is.

So I have long searched for an e-Reader besides an iPad that does multiple things. I did not want just an e-Reader. Here was my list of "wants" before I would consider purchasing an e-Reader:
  • Backlit: Because I will be using this device almost every night -- and on trips, etc. -- I wanted it to be capable of being used without an external light. Truly, I can't see paying more than $100 for something that has no internal light. It doesn't make any sense to me. Technology  has come way too far for me to spend money on something that isn't up to par. You wouldn't buy your child an old-school Gameboy rather than a DS, would you?
  • Color: Again, maybe this is my own stigma, growing up in the world of technology that we have today, but when I look at the original Kindle with its slightly-gray screen, I cannot for the life of me figure out why it would cost over $100. I want more for my money! I realize that books are grayish-white pages with black print, and that the first e-Readers were created to mimic actual books. In my opinion, that is no longer the draw. I have books. I want more out of an e-Reader. I want color, and vividness, and an amazing screen!
  • Touch screen: Speaking of screens, I want a touch one. After using the iPod touch, I'm not sure how I could go back. Certainly not to the Kindle with its buttons and keyboard at the bottom.
  • Tablet capability: I said before that I wanted the iPad to function as both e-Reader and computer, but it didn't do the job well enough for me to pay $499 or more. However, I still wanted this functionality in an e-Reader. In late April, an announcement came that I had been waiting for:

A new Nook Color "upgrade transforms the device into more of a full tablet with a native e-mail app and an app store" (via

So I bought a Nook Color. Backlit. Full-color screen. Touch screen. And now -- tablet capability. Of course, it also works perfectly as an e-Reader.

Brent started working on it last night to get it where I want it. I'm a bit frustrated (not with him -- he is amazing(!), but with the factory settings straight out of the box), but I'm confident that within a week I won't know how I ever lived (and read) without it.


  1. Congrats! I haven't brought myself to the point to use an e-Reader yet, and I'm not sure I'll be able to. Nathan and I have discussed the pros and cons, but we both agree that turning an actual page gives us something that an e-Reader cannot. My best friend has one and loves it, even has the Bible on it and brings it to church with her instead of her massive text. I think I'm too much of an underliner and page-turner to have one yet. However, judging by the stack of books you took on that recent field trip I read about on here, I am very glad you found the Nook! :)

  2. I like my iPad, but kind of wish I had waited for a tablet pc. I do like to read on it, favorite is that I can read in bed without having a light on, which is less disturbing to my hubby! The downside.....I stopped blogging altogether because it was just too inconvenient in the iPad.



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