The problem with Nook apps

Compare and contrast:

B&N Nook App Store

 

Apple App Store

Same game, 404% more expensive on the Nook. No free demo versions from B&N, either, but they do want to sell you books. Maybe before completely spinning off the Nook brand, they should let us run Android properly on our capable little tablets. Hey, sure beats dying of dysentery …

#nookfail

Got a couple of spare NOOKcolor Charging Cables, since (grar! gnash!) it uses its own special twist on the USB Micro-B connector that just doesn’t work with anything else. They came in a middling size box, and then each cable was packaged thus:
That’s a 120×75mm box with 70×70mm blocked out, leaving only 50mm for the cable. Stay wasteful, Barnes & Noble …

rootery nook

OooOOooh! teh pritty! I’ve temporarily rooted my Nook Color to run the latest version of Android from microSD using the following instructions: [ROM][CM7] [v1.3] Size-agnostic SD Card image and CM7 installer for SD Cards. – xda-developers. It’s a bit slow.

Perhaps the hardest part was getting this screenshot. I got it using the Android SDK ddms tool, which took some hitting with a virtual Stillson wrench to get going. If, on OS X, the command adb devices returns a blank list, you will need to add the Nook’s USB vendor ID to the ~/.android/adb_usb.ini config file. Stop the server (adb kill-server), then enter the following command:

echo 0x2080 >> ~/.android/adb_usb.ini

then restart the adb server (adb start-server). adb devices should return something like:

List of devices attached 
2010830023232004    device

and now all tethered Android joy can be yours.

a Nook Color-shaped brick


Update: it works! And, suspiciously, I made no changes to the router settings, so I must add — with perhaps a smallish serving of humble pie, since I can’t prove I got the password right or wrong before — the following two steps to the troubleshooting script:

  • are you sure the wireless password is correct?
  • are you sure the wireless password is correct?

It’s really annoying that B&N tech support recommend hard resetting the device, as that leaves it useless until you get to a compatible network. I’d like to thank chapters.indigo.ca and Café Mirage for providing excellent connectivity to the Kennedy Commons parking lot to allow me to re-register my Nook Color …


I have a Barnes & Noble Nook Color. Well, no; I have something the size, shape, colour, weight, and smell of a Nook Color, but it might as well be a brick. It seems that, unless you’re exceptionally lucky with your router choice, it won’t connect to wireless. This is, for what is essentially a wireless information browser, a bit of a problem.

What happens with my Linksys WRT350N is that the Nook shows network Authenticating, then network Remembered, then network Authenticating again, then network Disconnecting, then finally Disabled, secured with WPA/WPA2 PSK. I called tech support (1-800-THE-BOOK; and if you’re in Canada, use Google Voice from gmail, as you get into tech support, where using a real phone puts you on hold then gets you kicked off), where I was told to hard reset the machine. That didn’t work; now I have a machine stuck in perpetual “Register your Nook” mode until I get to a different network. The tech support dude suggested taking it back to the store, then got completely flummoxed when I said I was in Canada.

What I’ve tried:

  • Forgetting then reconnecting to the network; nope
  • Restarting the router; nope
  • Updating the router firmware; nope, already on latest version
  • Checking the Nook firmware; nope, already on 1.2.0
  • Entering the Nook’s MAC address into the router filter table; nope.

What I haven’t yet tried is downgrading my network to Wireless G, which seems to be the suggested solution. But, c’mon — this is a device released late last year. B&N want me to downgrade my stable, slightly elderly router just to get this new trinket to work? Not gonna happen.

Oh and while we’re ranting, Barnes & Noble: do you really need to send me a sales e-mail every bloody day? I’ve just bought one of your blasted things, and every morning I’m getting “Buy a Nook!” in my inbox. Make it stop, okay?