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Nook Tablet or Kindle Fire, Which will you buy?



The reviews of the Kindle Fire start trickling out tonight and that reminded about my wife’s Christmas present, the Nook Tablet. Earlier today, I read a nice article by a friend of mine, Kevin Tofel over at GigaOM asking the same question. Kevin chose the Kindle Fire for pretty much the same reasons I chose the Nook Tablet for my wife.

Both the Nook Tablet and Kindle Fire are both slated for availability this week. In fact, I received an email from Best Buy today stating that the Kindle Fire will be available for purchase in their stores on Tuesday November 15th.

Both of these 7″ tablets acting as eReaders are very similar as pointed out in an article by Josh last week. The main difference between the two, aside from using different book libraries, is the internal memory and battery life. The Nook Tablet has 2x as much internal memory (16GB vs 8Gb). The Nook Tablet also offers a MicroSD slot and the Kindle Fire does not. The rated battery life also favors the Nook Tablet. The Kindle Fire has the advantage in having  “1st in the game” honors and this means that more people have invested in the Kindle library already. This might make it difficult to switch to Barnes and Nobles offering.

There’s also the price tag. The Kindle Fire is $199 and the Nook Tablet is $249. The price gets even tougher if you order direct from Amazon, which doesn’t collect sales tax. While many states still require you to pay this down the line, a price difference of $75 is noticeable. As in 7 ebooks noticeable. Of course if you buy the Kindle Fire at Best Buy, you’ll be paying tax anyway, so plan ahead.

Which brings up, how will the two tablets play out in retail stores. Best Buy will be selling the Nook Tablet and the Kindle Fire for the holidays, which will leave some of the devices’ fates on the hands of retail employees. If you want to go hands on with the Kindle Fire and the Nook Tablet, Best Buy should be a one stop shop in a week or so.

I chose to order the Nook Tablet for my wife for a Christmas present. When the initial Nook came out, I got it for her and she considers it one of the best gifts I have ever bought her. That’s saying a lot considering all the expensive jewelry I have purchased over 20 years of marriage.

The choice was easy to make. She has so much invested in the Nook’s library and it would kill her to switch. My wife has 303 books in this ecosystem so Barnes and Noble has us for life now.

So which will you grab, if any?

[polldaddy poll=5667706]

Warner ran a poll a while back that showed that most of you prefer Kindle over Nook (and any other readers), but with the game changing and the 7″ tablet readers taking over, opinions might change.

To get a better feel for each of these tablets, check out our hands on coverage and reviews.

I will share thoughts about the Nook Tablet from both my wife and I once it arrives. Stay tuned here for more about the Kindle Fire too!


  1. Bbjd

    11/13/2011 at 11:49 pm

    Roll Tide!

  2. Anonymous

    11/14/2011 at 4:10 am

    I think I’ll be waiting before deciding on either.
    But it seems a little unfair to vote now in any case as the Nook Tablet has not been out for review yet while Kindle Fire reviews are going up today at the usual haunts.
    I think the “how much do you already have invested in a particular store?” is the big argument as the author points out.
    This is just another problem frankly with the state of books going from paper to digital.  Ultimately the fact that you can’t take them with you or transfer them is a killer of competition.

  3. Dale Strauss

    11/14/2011 at 6:02 am

    I said “Neither” for the very reason you sighted for getting it –

    “She has so much invested in the Nook’s library and it would kill her to switch. My wife has 303 books in this ecosystem so Barnes and Noble has us for life now.”

    On my HTC Flyer I can read Kindle, Nook, Kobo, and almost any other non-iBook format. I get 1gb ram; 16gb internal storage and 32gb micro-SD; front and rear cameras and microphone (say hello to Skype); bluetooth; GPS; aluminum unibody construction; all for $50 more than the Nook Tablet. Not to mention the best part – full access to Android market and the Google apps (maps, Gmail,. etc.). As an Amazon prime customer I can watch the free video content – no loss there.

    • Suz Perkins

      11/30/2011 at 10:34 am

      I am still deciding between the Kindle and the Nook, but after reading your comment I looked up the HTC Flyer and they are selling for over $400 dollars…so you said you paid only $50.00 more then the Nook which is selling for $249.00…where did you buy your Flyer?

  4. Anonymous

    11/14/2011 at 6:34 am

    Neither. Preordered the Fire and canceled it when the Vizio tablet was $190. Glad I did it, that Vizio tablet is very underrated.

  5. John Go

    11/14/2011 at 8:05 am

    Double the RAM of Nook Table will definitely have a lot of performance impact when more than one app is open. Everyone who actually held Kindle Fire and Nook Tablet in their hands noted that Nook’s screen is much better and brighter besides being laminated for reduced glare (not on Kindle or iPad). Nook Tablet is $224 if sign up for Barnes & Noble membership. 16 GB Nook’s content capacity plus 32 GB via microSD card vs. 8 GB capacity of Kindle Fire with no expansion slot IS a big deal – and don’t start with that Cloud talk, it won’t be available while traveling  or where Wi-Fi is not available. Portable tablets are all about doing things on the go. Cloud is way overrated – good for an occasional backup but not for content usage on Wi-Fi-only tablet on the go. Reading 11.5 hours battery life and 9 hours of video playback time vs. 8 hours for reading and 7.5 hours of video playback on Kindle Fire (even that 7.5 hours will? not hold trues in tests, video playback drains battery much more than reading). Silk browser of Kindle Fire will not have any noticeable performance boost over Wi-Fi (may be over 3G it would) and the device is Wi-Fi only; also this browser is a privacy hazard.

  6. Rdreine

    11/15/2011 at 1:32 pm

    The $50 difference is more than $70. doesnt charge sales tax.  Normally, I would split hairs on this but if your going to spend $300, I’d rather spend a little more and get Samsung Galaxy Tab Plus, Sony’s tablet or the base iPad.

  7. Md. Eakub Ahmed

    02/25/2012 at 10:58 am

    Is Kindle Fire really a Tablet PC! Lacking a lot in features and giving a lot of media, the trade off is not that ballanced! Its really very interesting to see the ransformational nature of personal communication & computing technology in last 20 years.

    The analytical reasoning behind the evolution of netbooks to laptop & mobile phones to smartphones to tablet is nothing but the market force which driven the whole communication technology from miniaturization to functionality to large touch screen to portable & faster computing. 

    Consumers of handheld communication devices in the whole world is currently devided in 3 main groups. The current market rockers are Kindle Fire from Amazon, iPad from Apple & Galaxy Tab from Samsung. Who will get the largest share of the pie entirely depends on the value proposition the product offers. Say, iPad2 is high priced & a highly feature loaded tablet. On the other hand, Kindle Fire is targeting low spenders who love to consume e-contents and dont bother about unlimited storage but bother about price.

    And the recent release of Samsung Galaxy Note is nothing but the merging of Tablets & Smartphones is cutting the growth of current hot sellers. This Hybrid product will lead the future of personal handheld device for a long time for sure.

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