We have been looking at tablet computers for some time now. While we’d love to have iPads, we just can’t justify the expense, no matter how hard we try. Although I know that I will make use of a tablet for work things, and it won’t be just a toy, we all know it’s something I can live without.
Anyways, we started looking at the Kindle Fire a few weeks ago as a possibility. It’s inexpensive, and seems to do everything that I want. And it’s an Android tablet. … sort of …
One concern I had was that they have their own app store. So there might be some things in the real app store that you can’t get for your Kindle. But for some reason this didn’t concern me too terribly much.
Well, we got to the store, and the Kindle was next to the Nook Tablet, which compares very favorably in terms of price and features, and also has an SD-card expansion slot, which was a major selling point.
Oh, yeah, and they have their own app store, too.
When I got the Nook home, after the new-shiny-geeky-high wore off, I became very frustrated that every app I wanted to install was unavailable from the Nook app store. Every. Single. One. This frustration grew over the following days, until we decided to just take it back.
Unfortunately, E had destroyed the packaging, and they wouldn’t take it back without packaging.
But, there’s a happy ending to this story. There’s a product called N2A which sells an SD card for people in exactly my predicament. You insert their SD card, reboot, and, voila, you have an actual Android, which was extremely happy-making.
But it all makes me wonder, who makes decisions like this? Who decides to take an almost-magical product, and cripple it to the point where it’s barely usable? Not only do they force you to use their app store, but other features – like copy/paste as one example – had been selectively disabled, until what you’re left with is really nothing more than a very expensive ebook reader that frustrates you every time you encounter an app that looks really cool, but isn’t actually available.
So, here’s the conclusion. I love my NotNook. It’s possibly the coolest piece of technology I’ve ever owned, and yet another reason I love living in the future. But I think I can’t really recommend that you follow in my footsteps. Get a regular Android device, and avoid the frustration, unless you know ahead of time that this is what you’re in for.