I'm getting ready to go on vacation and naturally I'm loading up my Nook for the trip. What I've discovered is that pricing has changed in the last six months for the good.
Barnes & Noble with its Nook was late to the eReader party, being beat out initially by Amazon's Kindle. The first Nooks were price competitive with the Kindle, but after purchasing the Nook, I found that Barnes & Noble thought the Nook was a license to rip readers off with their pricing. As a result, I refrained from purchasing Nook books from Barnes & Noble, was disappointed, and instead downloaded free ePubs. Barnes & Noble's pricing was way too high for electronic media that cost them little to deliver compared to a physical book.
One of the main reasons I preferred the Nook over the Kindle is the Nooks ability to load and read free ePub's, which it does quite well, loading the ePub books into a separate folder called, My Documents. I've written a series of articles about this, and how to find, and put, ePub books on the Nook using Adobe Digital Editions. Basically, any book published before 1923 can be freely downloaded and put on the Nook, if it exists as an ePub, or PDF.
As an aside, there is a good translator or bridge program out there, that I haven't mentioned yet, that will allow you to a input a multitude of formats and convert them to any other format, including the Kindle. The program is called Calibre, and is available for free.
When I've wanted to get a newer book than 1923, that I know I'll need to purchase, my normal method of doing this has been to go to Amazon first and find the book. Amazon's search is much better than Barnes & Nobels. Often time I'll need the title and author, especially on technical books, before the Barnes & Noble site will be able to locate the book. The reviews are more numerous on Amazon which helps me evaluate whether I really want to purchase the book, or not.
Once I decide to purchase a book, I look at Amazon's Kindle price, which for me, is the highest price I'm willing to pay. I then go to the Barnes & Noble site and find the book there.
Here's my initial impression of the Barnes & Noble Nookbook offerings. They favor popular fiction and authors. Their selection of technical books was slim to nonexistent. When I initially went to the Barnes & Noble site, many times, the book would not be available. I thought this was strange since they started their business by selling college textbooks.
If I did find the book on Barnes & Noble, I was shocked at how high their pricing was compared to Amazon. The end result was I didn't buy the book and decided to read another book until the pricing came down.
I'm here to report that over the last couple of months, I've noticed a change in Barnes and Noble's pricing strategy. Their prices are starting to come down. My assumption is that Barnes & Noble figured out that some money is better than none at all. I'm sure they've noticed as they lower their prices their volume and sales have picked up. Hmmm, rocket science on their part.
I still do my Amazon check for their price before buying from Barnes & Noble. What I've seen lately is that Barnes & Noble has decided to match the Amazon price, YEA!! In some cases, that meant lowering their initial Nookbook price considerably, and I've noticed that their technical selection has started to improve.
As a result of all of this, I'm here to report I purchased four books from Barnes & Noble for my vacation. All at the same price I would have paid at Amazon. I see ebook pricing starting to stabilize.
Admittedly, the book vendors are making a handsome profit by not having to deliver the actual book. It's almost all profit, but there's a convenience in reading eBooks on an eReader, to only carry the eReader on vacation and not a bunch of books. I find it a faster read, with larger font, for you oldster's out there. I'm willing to pay for these conveniences.
This Christmas, I expect color eInk that will rival the current color, overly bright, not readable in sunlight, LCD displays. If Barnes & Noble continues to get it's act together, I see no reason not to stick with the Nook for my color eReader, and you know, I'll get one.