The Nook, From “I need” to “I’ll Pass” in a week.

So in the span of a week, the nook from Barnes & Noble has gone from zero to hero and is now hovering around, “dude I kinda look up to, a little, but not enough to want to be him”

The quick turn around was largely due to new facts coming out, like this. Turns out, the lending feature is pretty much destined to be vaporware.

  1. You can only lend 1 book, one time, ever. That’s it, lend it to a friend, and you can lend it no longer. And of course, while it’s lent out, you can’t read it. Sure a real book works like that, but this AREN’T REAL BOOKS. It’s an eBook, the “e” allows for things that the dead tree model can’t afford.
  2. The lending feature, much like the Kindle‘s now never turned on, Text-to-speach feature is at the mercy of publishers. Which to me, from experience, means, it’ll be turned off on 95% of all eBooks. Cuz of course, why would the publishers want us to use things we purchase, in ways we like?

Then while reading my KindleFeeder morning paper, I saw this on e-bookvine. If you’re curious about the Nook, read the whole thing. One of my absolutely biggest complaints about the Kindle is organization. I can’t organize books by … well anything. Out of the box I can sort by Title, Author and Date. Not Type, etc.

Apparently, while B&N was building the Nook, they chose to follow Palms footsteps, and not learn from the competition. It’s kinda straight forward, that if you’re coming late to the party, you should offer everything (or as much as possible) that the leader doesn’t offer, and of course, offer more too. The Nook doesn’t offer any better eBook organization than the Kindle. There’s no desktop library app (like iTunes), and no support for folders or tags. FAIL.

Why support your fans? I used to be a B&N Member. I love books, and love being in bookstores, so it made sense to save a little money. When i started buying books on Amazon, I let my membership lapse. Will the Nook offer B&N members, anything? Nope. No discount on the device (OK I can kinda get with that, kinda), and no discount on eBooks. FAIL. Why not offer your loyal members an extra incentive to buy eBooks. Especially when your eBooks, are more expensive than Amazon’s it entices members to buy your eBooks, it helps Nook adoption (I’d assume at least), and it might make you slightly price competitive.

The Nook is looking less and less like a device I’ll be buying. Which says a lot to me, I think B&N coulda stolen a lot of Kindle owners away from Amazon had they executed correctly. It looks like they’re hoping to entice a whole new group of people to buy the Nook, and let Amazon have the rest of us. I don’t see that working, not in the short or long term.

Simply offering something won’t create a market for it, and not enticing the early adopters, enthusiastic eBook supporters from Amazon means you have to hope you’ll find another million + eBook people, who don’t already own a Kindle. Good luck.

I’ll be a Kindle owner for a bit longer it looks like.

By John Wilker

I'm a science fiction writer and conference organizer. In 2017 I published my first book, 'Space Rogues', a fun Sci-Fi adventure with a fun cast of characters. I'm also the co-founder of 360|Conferences, a conference and event logistics consulting company.

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