Why I Decided on Nook Color Over Kindle, iPad & Books

I'm a voracious reader of all sorts of media. I currently hold 4 monthly magazine subscriptions, picking up another 2-3 on newsstands each month. I subscribe to 137 blogs in my RSS reader, with 273 new posts waiting for me since last night. On top of that, I find time to stalk the bookstore aisles, picking up one or two new non-fiction books each month. I'm drowning in words, and it's time to pick up an e-reader. I decided on the Nook Color, and here's why.

I've been flying a lot this summer. I think it's because I'm having a quarter-life crisis and it's making me want to see different places and eat every cuisine imaginable. But each time I fly, as I'm waddling through the airport a little later than I'd planned, I always stop to buy a book. My lack of foresight and absolute refusal to be bored on a plane make me buy those marked-up hardcovers that they stick you with at the terminal newsstand. After three different flights, with two more staring me down, I decided it's time for an e-reader.


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The choices are vast; and as somebody who has difficulty deciding where to eat dinner, I was stumped. But after a bit of research, I've decided on one. Here's how I got there:


Staying Connected
The big problem with my numerous airport debacles was the fact that I was super-limited in what books I could buy. I have a running list of "books to read" stashed in my brain (and in my iPhone's Notes app), and none of them were available at the newsstand next to my gate. I want to be connected, able to download any of thousands of books anywhere there's a wi-fi connection. If an e-reader was missing at least wi-fi compatibility, it was out.
Eliminated: Sony Reader Pocket Edition, Sony Reader Touch Edition, Sony Reader Daily Edition,


Size Matters
I'm turning to an e-reader as a replacement for my daily habit of carrying around a lightweight paperback book in my purse. Th last thing I need is something bulky that won't fit in my purse and makes me want to leave it at home. If it was much bigger than my copy of Freakonomics, it was out.
Eliminated: iPad, Kindle DX, Samsung Galaxy Tab


Erasing E-Ink
As much as I'd like immunity from glare when I'm reading in the sun, I'm in love with magazines far too much to invest in an e-ink reader. Their non-lit black and white screens, even if they're compatible with my monthly subscriptions, will do glossies and their full-page editorials no justice compared to LCD screens. It stung, but I knew I'd have to cross any grayscale e-ink readers off my list.
Eliminated: Kindle 3, Nook Simple Touch E-Reader, Kobo eReader


What's left? Barnes & Noble's Nook Color. I'll get the connectivity I need, a reasonably compact package that'll slide in my purse, and full-color displays for all my magazine and blog subscriptions.

In addition, I'll get some features I didn't ask for, like access to some of the Android Marketplace (for apps like Evernote and Angry Birds), a multi-compatible e-mail client and full web browsing.

It's a great decision for me, and maybe for you too. But there's a wonderful world of e-readers out there. If you've got one (or have already decided like me), leave a comment and tell us all what sold you. You might be helping another indecisive soul make her choice.


(Images: Flickr member iampeas licensed for use under Creative Commons, Flickr member Librarian by Day licensed for use under Creative Commons)

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Taryn is a writer, maker, designer, and editor of lifestyle blog Formal Fringe. She lives in an apartment in Atlanta with her fiancé, their Boston Terrier and lots of serving dishes.