So Barnes & Noble did in fact get my Nook Color ereader to me sooner than expected. I suspect that if I hadn’t called CS to complain about the delayed shipping date shown on my order, even though I had placed my pre-order the first day possible, my Nook Color would not have shipped until next week. At any rate it arrived yesterday, though I have been able to spend only a few hours with it so far. I will just post my initial impressions here until I have spent some more time with the Nook Color.
First of all, the packaging deserves mention. The box is attractive, elegant and easy to extract the Nook color from. This contrasts sharply with the plastic shell the original Nook ereader came in and which was notoriously difficult to open. B&N has taken a page from Amazon’s Frustration-Free Packaging playbook and jazzed it up.
The display of the Nook Color is a 7-inch LG VividView IPS LCD display that supports 16 million colors. It is quite beautiful. The capacitive touchscreen also seems quite responsive.
I tried taking the Nook Color outside and taking a photo beside my iPad, but it is a rainy day here. The screen of the Nook Color appears to be somewhat more visible when outdoors than the iPad, but I will have to try this again when the weather is better.
I had to try a few times to connect to my Wi-Fi, but once the initial connection was made everything seems to be working ok.
The speaker does not seem very loud, so I think you will want to use earphones when watching videos or multimedia books. The Nook Color should work very well for ebooks enhanced with multimedia. I’m thinking that combined with content from B&N’s new Kid’s Club the Nook Color will make a quite good, if somewhat pricey children’s ereader.
I’ve written before that reading on an LCD ereader for an extended period of time does bother my eyes. When reading on the iPad and other such devices I set the screen to the nighttime mode (light colored text on dark background) and this usually lets me read for a longer period of time without bother. It appears that there is no way to do this with the Nook Color. The only adjustment you can make is to adjust the brightness. I don’t understand why B&N would not include this feature. If, like me, your eyes have problems reading text for long periods of time on a backlit screen you might have problems with the Nook Color unless B&N fixes this.
Oops! Wrong! Wrong! Wrong! Yes, Virginia there is a night mode. Not sure how I missed it, but there is in fact a night mode as well as five other background/text colors to choose from. This control is in the popup font and page format option window right where it should be — for some reason I just overlooked it.
Update: For more see my full Nook Color review.