As I said earlier, I stopped in Barnes & Noble again today and gave the NookColor a deep fondle. Really went through it.
I’m more impressed by it. And it’s exactly what Barnes & Noble said it is: a reading tablet. It’s a new category. And before you laugh, what do you think the upcoming KindlePad will be? An open Android tablet with Kindle as just an app? I don’t think so. So, Barnes & Noble got there first.
And let me update one post from earlier: NookColor Type Crime. The horrible type crime there had to have been the fault of that particular ePub. Because I didn’t see any evidence of that in any other books I looked at on the NookColor today. Type is really gorgeous on it.
If the damn kittens would let me, I’d buy one. And, of course, I’d root it too.
However, I love the integrated Barnes & Noble shopping experience. It was just so damned neat to be able to instantly download a sample of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and look at it. I know Kindles have had this capability for a long time. But that’s an eInk device. This is the first time I’ve experienced this on a sharp, gorgeous LCD with books (OK, aside from the iPad and iBooks; but they’re not a “real” bookstore).
I should be rooting for Barnes & Noble, for god’s sake. They’re my home team. I spent years shopping at their local New York City stores before they ever became a monster chain. Most of my print library originated from their still-missed Sales Annex. And they’ve always been a class act as a store.
But I can’t root for them. Because they were greedy in splitting the eBook world with another damned DRM scheme.
And it doesn’t matter that I could easily strip the damned DRM. The point is that I shouldn’t have to worry about that. I should be able to buy from Barnes & Noble and put the damned eBook on a Sony Reader too if I want, without jumping through hoops.
I want Barnes & Noble to wake up. They’d be in a much stronger position if they’d drop their damned DRM and went with “classic” Adobe DRM. They wouldn’t have people like me biting them in the neck over this, for one. And they’d get a hell of a lot more customers from all those people who use the Sony Reader and, yes, even the Kobo Reader.
Wake up, Barnes & Noble! Wake up!
You don’t have to lock people in like Amazon to win.
Giving people choice wins.
Drop the mutant DRM so everybody can buy from you.
Apparently people are not understanding the full dimension of this issue.
1) Barnes & Noble’s mutant DRM is based on a credit card number.
2) Therefore, you cannot have an account at all without a credit card.
3) No, you cannot open an account with a Gift Card. Look at their instructions.
4) “Classic” Adobe DRM does not have this limitation. I have accounts at Sony’s Reader Store, the Kobo Books store, and Borders all without a credit card.
5) And I even have an account at the Kindle Store without a credit card.
6) I can buy from any of those stores with Gift Cards. No plastic required.
7) Barnes & Noble’s mutant DRM basically says: No plastic? Then get lost, we don’t want your kind as a customer.
You would think with Barnes & Noble losing business every month in its real-life stores, it would do whatever is needed to gain more customers for its eBook business.
Books were never about catering to an exclusive crowd. The goal of books is to spread literacy and education. Barnes & Noble discriminates against those who, for whatever reason — especially in this perilous economy — lack a credit card. This is a disgrace for a store that is in the book business.