Kindle vs. Nook Color

On Saturday I was able to finally check out the new Nook color ereader. I have a 2nd generation Kindle and I have played around with the newer 3rd generation as well. I have read around fifty books on my kindle, so it is definitely well used. Overall, the new Kindle and the new Nook Color are both great units. I’ve had several people ask me which one is better. So here’s my quick analysis of the features that matter most.

Battery Life

Kindle is the clear winner with a battery that can last up to a month if you turn off wireless. The Nook color has a battery life of around 8 hours with the wifi turned off. With the Nook, you would have to charge and charge often. I took my Kindle on a 10 day trip and didn’t even take the charger with me.


This is a tough comparison because of the two different screen displays. For reading books, the Kindle wins out. It is easier on the eyes and you can read in direct sunlight. For magazines, newspapers, games, and the web, the Nook Color is better. And the Nook Color is a touchscreen, so it is easier to use. I don’t know how many times I find myself poking at the screen of my kindle expecting to navigate pages.


The Kindle 3G is $139, and when you add in 3G the cost goes up to $189. The Nook Color is $249

Web Browsing

The 2nd generation Kindle has a web browser in the experimental menu, but it is just plain terrible. It is slow and the formatting on most pages in unreadable.  The 3rd generation Kindle made a huge jump and switched to a webkit browser, which works great. It is now usable for checking email and basic web activities. However, the Nook Color is based on the Android operating system and it just blows away the Kindle while browsing the web.

Future Potential

Here is where I think the advantage goes to the Nook Color. The Kindle is great for reading books, but that is it. Since the Nook is based on Android, it can expand far beyond a typical ereader. Barnes & Noble has announced that there will be apps available on the Nook in the future. Some people have already rooted the Nook and installed Android apps on it. Pandora is already installed on the Nook and as more apps are added, it becomes more of a tablet and less of an ereader.


For reading books, I think the Kindle is still the clear winner. It is the cheaper unit and the longer battery life is the game changer. The Nook Color is much tougher to evaluate. I really like it and I am interested by it, but I can’t see myself ever buying one. It is a hybrid between an android phone and an iPad. The price is good, but I don’t really know where it fits in. When it comes right down to it, I would rather have an iPad. If they open up the operating system and allow you to install any android apps, then it might have a chance. Do you have either one? If so, what do you like or dislike? Leave a comment and share your thoughts.


I am a former design engineer who now pastors Cornerstone Community Church in Galax, Virginia. I'm passionate about following Jesus and I love technology. I've been married to Jennifer for 28 years, and we have three adult children.

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4 Responses

  1. Jess says:

    Seems like you’re comparing apples to oranges. I looked at both–online only–and the Nook Color is clearly a toy, heading, as you said, more towards the direction of iPad and the like. I compared the regular Nook to the new Kindle, both G3 and WiFi only versions because I’m really only interested in an e-reader, and the budget is very limited. My bag gets pretty heavy with all the books I carry around, and I need to ease up on the shoulder pain.

    I liked the features and looks of the Kindle better, but it seemed more limited as far as ebook file types it would work with. Although these versions of the Nook and Kindle are close in price with the Nook being about $10 higher, B & N has an eBay store with recertified Nooks available at a substantial discount. I couldn’t locate any discount source for Kindles that came close. Even used ones are selling at a premium.

    I hadn’t actually planned on purchasing an e-reader for awhile, but when I came across a brand new, still sealed in the box Nook (WiFi only) available for $110 shipped on ebay I took the leap. It should arrive in a couple of days. The Kindle still appeals to me more, but for $29 savings I think I can make do. 🙂

    • Mike says:

      The regular Nook is a quality device as well, I’m just comparing the most recent versions. I agree with you, if you find a good deal, go for it. On Black Friday, Amazon was selling refurbished 2nd Generation Kindles for $89. Thanks for sharing your thoughts

  2. Piplzchoice says:

    I would like to offer another perspective to the gadgets review and comparison that is usually based on list of their functions, and that is to what degree the device have met customer expectations. Here is the link to the customer reviews analysis that your readers may find helpful Reputation of any reader that was not included in the article can be checked by entering its name at

  3. Jess says:

    Thanks for the links. I found them interesting. So far I’m happy with my Nook (non-color). I haven’t had any technical problems to this point, and it’s easy enough to use and seems to do what it’s supposed to. This morning I had to smile though because I received an email from about their e-books. It seems they will work with pretty much any reader except the Kindle. The file compatibility issue was one of the reasons I chose the Nook. I already have a smartphone, so the lure of internet access, games or other entertainment are of no interest to me. I just wanted a reader that didn’t give me a headache.

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