The Nook Touch, the newest reading device from Barnes & Noble, is a touchscreen device and sells for $139. The newest device from Kobo is the $129 Kobo eReader Touch, which also sports touchscreen technology. The big question is: How do the Nook Touch and Kobo Touch stack up against the Sonys and the Kindle 3?

As is always the case with technology, each has its pluses and minuses, and which plus or minus weighs more heavily depends on the individual user. The video reviews have already begun.

First up is a comparison of the Nook Touch to the Sony 350 (and essentially the Sony 650 and 950, too):

Second, is the Nook Touch vs. Kindle 3:

The Kobo Touch is the chief competitor to the Nook Touch. Here is a video review of the Kobo Touch.

As impressive as I find the Nook Touch and the Kobo Touch, I am still pleased that I bought a Sony 950, although to get the Sony features and larger size (the 950 is a 7-inch screen whereas the two Touches are 6-inch screens) I paid twice the price. For how I use my ereader device, however, neither the Nook Touch nor the Kobo Touch is up to par, and the Kindle 3 is simply far behind design-wise if you prefer, as I do, touchscreen technology to a physical keyboard that is omnipresent. (The screens of all the devices — Sony, Kobo, Nook, and Kindle — are similar as they all use the same eInk Pearl screen.)

However, if the factors bearing the greatest weight were price and “good enough,” there is no doubt I would buy either the Nook Touch or the new Kobo Touch. As between the two (and because I live in the United States), I am not sure. I certainly prefer the B&N eco system to the Kobo system, but Kobo has perhaps a better implementation. Because I am not interested in the “social” environment, I don’t consider that a plus or minus for the devices — just something for me to ignore.

For those of you who read this blog and who are deciding to buy one of the touchscreen devices — or are deciding not to buy one and go the Kindle route — what influenced your decision?

A couple of other things to note and consider: First, the touchscreen technology that the Sony, Kobo, and Nook are using is the same on all devices. Second, Amazon is usually a quick responder. I wonder what its response will be. And, finally, Sony has in the past announced new products in late August and made them available in October. Will Sony come up with something to shake things up again as it did last year with the combination of the Pearl screen and the infrared touchscreen?

Via An American Editor


  1. Was there a point to this? is only offering the 350-PRS 5″ model for sale at this time; the 650-PRS and 950-PRS are marked “out of stock” or “no longer available for purchase at Sony Store”. is only offering the 350-PRS model and no longer over the website — it’s only remaining stock in stores.

    So, the recommendation to go for a PRS-950 — the only model that has both IR touch screen and wifi and which sold for $299 — can’t be followed through by the reader.

    On the other hand, you can actually purchase a Kindle 3, a Nook Touch and a Kobo Touch, and up to 30% less than the $179 Sony is asking for the smaller 5″ non-wifi reader (pink and silver are available).

    Perhaps this can be revisited if and when Sony makes a formal announcement about new models or perhaps issues a press release stating they are exiting the business entirely.

  2. I recently switched from a Sony PRS-600 to the Kindle 3 Wi-Fi, primarily because Calibre now allows me to sync the ‘last page read’ between the Kindle and my Android phone even for books I didn’t buy at Amazon (as long as they’re DRM-free and converted to Mobi format). That’s huge for me, as I have a lot of non-Amazon books and switch between my device and phone a lot. I wasn’t sure if I would mind giving up the touch screen, but it’s been perfectly fine, and the screen clarity is so much better that now I can read in lower light than before. The PRS-600 was a very good reader but the syncing function that the Calibre/Kindle combination enables trumps everything for me personally.

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