What eReader should I buy? NookColor vs. Kindle 3

We compare the price, size and features of two ebooks: the Amazon Kindle and NookColor

NookColor vs. Kindle 3

NookColor vs. Kindle 3

If you pride yourself on being a bit of a bookworm, you need to buy an e-reader – end of story. While basic, no-frills E-Ink models continue to be produced, the category has morphed to include all manner of fancy tools and features: from inbuilt WiFi to full colour LCD displays. Indeed, some ebook readers are so feature-packed, they share more in common with the likes of the Apple iPad.

Before you buy an Amazon Kindle, NookColor or Apple iPad check out our eBook buying guide to find out which features you should compare.

Two of the most feature-packed e-readers on the market are the Amazon Kindle 3 (3G Wi-Fi) and Barnes & Noble's Nook Color.

NookColor

nookcolor vs kindle 3
NookColor: Size matters

As its name implies, the Nook Color incorporates a full-colour 7in LCD touch screen that is capable of displaying up to 16 million colours. This naturally opens up a new world of reading possibilities, including comics, children's stories, magazines and university text books. Other handy features found on the NookColor include MP4 video playback, full colour Web browsing and a MicroSD slot for additional storage.

Kindle 3 (3G Wi-Fi edition)

nookcolor vs kindle 3
Kindle 3: thinner than a pencil

The Kindle 3 (3G Wi-Fi), meanwhile, sticks to a greyscale E-Ink display, but with vastly improved contrast. While it lacks some of the Nook Color's multimedia features, the Amazone Kindle is more portable and costs significantly less than its Barnes & Noble rival.

In the table below, we compare how the Kindle 3 (3G Wi-Fi) stacks up against the Nook Color:

Amazon Kindle vs NookColor: specs

Feature Amazon Kindle 3 NookColor Verdict?
Screen size 6in 7in NookColor
Display resolution 800x600 pixels 1024x600 pixels NookColor
Display technology 4-level grayscale VividView LCD NookColor
Touch screen No Yes NookColor
OS Linux (2.6.10 kernel) Android 2.1 Draw
CPU Intel PXA255 ARM Cortex A8-based Ti OMAP 3621 (800 MHz) Draw
Supported files AZW, PDF, TXT, MOBI, PRC, MP3, AA EPUB, PDF, XLS, DOC, PPT, PPS, TXT, DOCM, XLSM, PPTM, PPSX, PPSM, DOCX, XLX, PPTX, JPG, GIF, PNG, BMP, MP3, AAC, MP4 NookColor
Internal memory 4GB 8GB NookColor
Memory card slot No Yes (Micro SD) NookColor
Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n 802.11b/g/n Draw
3G HSDPA network support Yes No Kindle 3
Radio No Yes NookColor
Battery life 4 months (approx.) 8 hours (approx.) Kindle 3
Dimensions 191×135×18mm 205x127x12mm Kindle 3
Weight 241g 422g Kindle 3
Keyboard QWERTY Touch screen Kindle 3
Web browsing Yes Yes Draw
Price US$189 US$295 Kindle 3

As you can see, the Nook Color trumps the Kindle 3 when it comes to display technology and file support. The Kindle 3, on the other hand, wins out in the price and portability stakes.

If you're looking for a gadget that can do a variety of multimedia tasks, plump for the NookColor. If you just want an affordable and easy-to-carry reading device (with a few extras thrown in), get a Kindle 3.

Still undecided? Read our full, in-depth review of the NookColor and Kindle 3 for an exhaustive overview.

Further reading:

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Chris Jager

PC World
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