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Preview: Barnes & Noble’s Nook Color

Barnes & Noble Ditches E Ink Screen for LCD Touchscreen in Latest Nook


Preview: Barnes & Noble’s Nook Color

Barnes & Noble Nook Color eBook reader

Photo © Barnes & Noble

What would happen if you combined the original Nook with Apple’s iPad? Well, you’d likely get something like Barnes & Noble’s new Nook Color.

As the name implies, the latest addition to the Nook family adds a healthy dose of color but at the expense of the traditional Nook’s E Ink screen. Gone is the double-screen approach with a a black-and-white main screen and a smaller touchscreen at the bottom. Instead, the LCD screen now takes up all the real estate on the device.

Here’s a look at Nook Color’s specs:

Dimensions: The Nook Color is 5 inches wide and 8.1 inches tall. It’s 0.48 inches thick and weighs 15.8 ounces.

Display: The device features a 7-inch color touchscreen with an In Plane Switching (IPS) display. The advantage of an IPS display is that it provides better viewing angles than a standard LCD screen. Barnes & Noble claims that the screen can display 16 million colors. Resolution is 1024 x 600 at 169 pixels per inch.

Wireless connectivity: Wi-Fi (802.11 b/g/n) with free wireless service at Barnes & Noble stores. The Nook Color also comes with a browser built in for Web surfing.

File formats: For reading, the Nook Color supports EPUB and PDF, along with XLS, DOC, PPT, PPS, TXT, DOCM, XLSM, PPTM, PPSX, PPSM, DOCX, XLX, PPTX. In case you didn’t notice from those extensions, the device is compatible with Microsoft Office files. Supported image files are JPG, GIF, PNG, BMP. The Nook Color also plays MP4 video and MP3 and AAC music files.

Storage: The Nook Color comes with an internal memory of 8 GB, and is expandable via a MicroSD memory card. The device can take a MicroSD card with up to 32 GB of memory.

Connectors: MicroUSB port at the bottom plus a universal 3.5 mm stereo headphone jack at the top.

Battery and power: Battery life is rated at 8 hours with Wi-Fi turned off. Charge time is about 3 hours.

Extra features: The Nook Color comes with its own set of apps, which Barnes & Noble calls NOOKextras. Users can also share book recommendations via Google contacts, Facebook or Twitter.

Price: $249

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