5 Reasons To Avoid The New Nook GlowLight From Barnes And Noble

nook GlowLight

Are you thinking about buying one of those newly released nook GlowLight e-readers from Barnes and Noble?  Here’s 5 reasons why you might want to think again.

1. No MicroSD slot for expansion.

We might as well get the biggest disappointment out the way up front.  Barnes and Noble claims that they’ve doubled the capacity of the new nook, and they have, at least internally, but what they don’t tell you straight away is that they’ve removed the capability of expanding that storage by removing the microSD slot that has been present in every iteration of the device up until now.  That means if you’ve got an older nook Simple Touch or nook Simple Touch with GlowLight and you have a bunch of books loaded up on a microSD card, you can’t just pop that card out of your existing device and into the new one.  Kiss the days of adding up to 32 gigs of additional storage goodbye, forget about carrying your entire library with you wherever you go, and don’t even think about doing any type of rooting.

2. 4 gigs of internal storage really equals 512 megabytes for your personal books.

Here’s something else they don’t really highlight for you.  That doubling of the internal memory from 2 gig to 4 gig that they’re so proud about?  The way the device is formatted you only get 512 megabytes of that expanded memory to use for your own sideloaded content.  The rest is eaten up by the operating system and is “reserved” for content purchased directly from Barnes and Noble.  Combine this fact with #1 above and what you’ve got, unless you buy everything you read directly from Barnes and Noble, is a very tiny amount of space for your own personal library of ePub books.

3. No more physical page turning buttons.

In addition to removing the option for expandable storage, Barnes and Noble also killed the page turning buttons that were built into the frame of the device on previous models. Their absence may not be a deal breaker for some, but if you’re one of those people who like to read a clear screen, one that doesn’t have noticeable fingerprints all over it from having to touch it all the time, then you may be disappointed.  At the very least you’ll probably want to keep a micro fiber cloth handy for screen cleaning at all times.

4. Now in white only.

Barnes and Noble killed the dark body frame that’s been in place since the first iteration of the simple touch model and went back to the white color of their very first e-reader.  They claim that this color change helps to better mimic the margins of an actual book.  Perhaps, but over time that white frame is going to become one big magnet for dirt and dust.  If I wanted to stare at the blank margins of a book, I’d pick up a real book.  If I’m e-reading, I’ll take the darker frame please, which to my eyes matches the text that’s being displayed in a much more appealing way (and looks nicer in the dark when that light is glowing strong).

5. Those new colorful ipadish covers look cool but…

…they don’t quite close thanks to a lack of magnets in the frame of the device.  What’s the point of paying an additional $22 to attach a protective cover to the e-reader if you can’t guarantee that it will securely close completely over the screen when it’s not in use?

What do you think of the new nook GlowLight? Are you getting one? Let us know!

About Aaron Westerman

Aaron Westerman is the Manager of Web Architecture for a national human services organization. When he's not busy tearing sites apart and rebuilding them, he spends his ever shrinking free time trying to keep up with his twins, reading works of translated literature, and watching far too many Oscar nominated movies.

  • Sparks13

    The texture protected screen doesn’t hold fingerprints unless you’re handling the device with really greasy, dirty hands. I’ve had mine for nearly 3 weeks, Read 6-8 books turning the pages with a finger touch on the screen (which I vastly prefer), and haven’t had to clean the screen yet other than blowing off a few specks of dust or lint. I question whether or not you actually USED a Nook Glowlight to read anything, or just eyeballed it long enough to try and find things to bash.

    • http://www.typographicalera.com/ Typographical Era

      Not looking for things to bash. I own a simple touch, simple touch with glow light and an HD+ tablet. I also have the bluetooth speaker. I was just pointing out reasons why I’m unhappy (and you might be too) with the latest iteration and why I personally chose to avoid it.

      I’m glad you like it and it works for you!

  • ionnes

    Back in January I had a B&N gift card and was seriously considering this device. I have a Nook Tablet, Simple Touch, Nook HD + already and a device I could easily read in both the dark and daylight appealed to me. In the end, lack of covers, no SD, white shell, none of that bothered me. But no physical buttons was the thing that convinced me not to buy. Perhaps it was needed to keep the white as white as possible. But in the end that was a deal breaker for me.

    Maybe if I wasn’t used to having them it wouldn’t seem so bad, but currently it seems crazy to remove those. At least to me.


    why is all this tech crap so difficult to use? Who can waste the time figuring out how to use all this stuff anyway? My Nook glow light is one big pain in the butt to use. The time is off by 10 minutes, yet there is no way to reset the time. I have to jump thru hoops to download epub books and then I can’t remove them from the reader as they do not appear on Adobe D/E…When I need to eject the unit to disconnect it, I need to open my device menu to remove it. I could go on, but then I would be spending even more time on my Windows 8 (a piece of crap O/S, BTW…) desktop just trying to play a game. And I thought that computers would make my life easier. I’m going outside for a walk. It’s uncomplicated and free.

  • Calister Schnuck

    sparks 13 doesn’t seem to like your review. I completely appreciate it.
    have two nook simple touch glow and love them. the only reason we were
    considering the new “plus” (should be “minus”) is because the batteries
    are dying, and B&N of course doesn’t make it easy to change the
    battery…not exactly green are they? And how very “Apple” of them.
    the SD card alone would keep us from buying this new product, but the
    additional issues really seal the coffin. Thanks again for the warning.
    How very disappointing though.