Tech Lab guy, Hiawatha Bray reviews the Kindle Fire and the Nook Tablet
(written version below)
Let’s begin with an admission. There’s no question about it, the iPad is the superior tablet on the market. It’s the best thing out there of its kind. No question about it.But who’s got $500 laying around these days? It’s about time somebody came up with a lower cost alternative. There have been some efforts we’ve seen in recent months. but everything so far has fallen a little short. It’s made you think gee I’m not sure I want to buy that. All of the sudden we’ve come across not one but two possible alternatives that might make you want to rethink that.
This is the Nook tablet from Barnes and Noble. And this bad boy right here is the much awaited Kindle Fire from Amazon.com. Each of these tablets is 7 inches and runs the Android operating system. There are some significant hardware differences here. The Kindle fire actually trails the Nook in features. Considering that the Nook costs $50 more that makes sense. For example, The kindle Fire has 8 gigs of memory and the Nook has 16.
Another big difference between the two is the quality of the video screen. It’s not just me, I’ve wandered around the newsroom asking people and the difference is night and day. The video quality of the Nook tablet is dramatically better than the quality of the Kindle Fire. you can look at movies on either one of these devices but I know which one I’d want to use.
Remember just a couple of years ago, these guys were making plain old black and white ebook readers. But after seeing the huge success of the iPad, they realized that they could do more. And finally they’re starting to deliver.