It seems Barnes and Noble gave everyone a bit of a surprise today. It was expected that the bookseller would be launching a 3G version of its wildly popular NOOK e-reader (or maybe even a 3G NOOKcolor), but instead, B&N went straight for the competition's throat, launching the 6-inch e-ink display sporting, Android-powered (albeit Android 2.1) NOOK Simple Touch Reader. And all for the low, low cost of $140 - a price suspiciously reminiscent of a certain other e-book reader.
CyanogenMod 7 has earned its reputation as the most reliable Gingerbread ROM, even though it hasn't yet entered stable mode. And tonight, the fun goes on -
RC4 RC3.14159265358979323846264338327, as the CM team so lovingly refers to it, has just been launched for all supported CM devices.
While RC4 doesn't contain any ground-breaking new features, it does bring a number of bug fixes - for example, hardware acceleration has been added to the Nook Color, and EGL has seen a big fix.
We learned a couple of months ago that Bluetooth had been unlocked for Nook Color on a developmental level, but not until today has it been available for users. Developers fattire and verygreen have collaborated on a CM7 SD card bootable ROM that will let you sync your Bluetooth keyboard or headset to the "eReader." As trusted dev dalingrin noted earlier in our comments, the Bluetooth functionality has also been committed to the CyanogenMod 7 nightlies and is now available.
As more high-end Android tablets hit the market, the prices can be pretty overwhelming (I'm talking to you, Motorola XOOM). While it doesn't sport cutting-edge specs, the 7" Barnes & Noble Nook Color has been taken on as a pet project by many in the development community (even running a mostly stable port of the Honeycomb SDK preview), and can be turned into a solid $250 tablet. Now, if you act quickly, you can change that to a $200 tablet when you snatch it up from the manufacturer's eBay account.
Device updates that break root are fairly common - in fact, I'd go so far as to say that the majority of updates do so. What's a bit less common, though, is an update that resets your device because you're rooted. The device in question here is the NOOKcolor, and unfortunately it looks like that's exactly what's happening.
Before I dive into the details, I think it's important to note that I doubt that even as much as manufacturers and carriers dislike when people root their device, it's pretty far over the line for them to remotely wipe the devices of people who have done so.
The rooting of Barnes & Noble's delicious IPS-wielding e-reader took place a couple of weeks ago, rendering the device more of a tablet than a single-use reading terminal in one gloriously justifying move. As with most other tablets, however, it lacked one thing: proper Google app support with access to the Android market. Of course, with the main rooting hurdle already surmounted, it was only a matter of time before these problems were dealt with, too.
Details are stupidly scarce on this right now - there isn't even an XDA thread, and Google's not showing any hits either - but YouTube user jacememes has uploaded a video of a NOOKcolor running an Android 2.2.1 AOSP (Android open source project) build. That's certainly a fast turnaround time, given that the device was just rooted a few days ago.
The video was shot with an Android phone, so it's not the best quality, but it's more than enough to show what it needs to.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab is the only Android-based tablet worth considering. But is it? That question is now up in the air since Barnes and Noble's $250 NOOKcolor, an Android-based e-reader, has been rooted. While before the deed was done it was just that - an e-reader - it's now taken on a life of its own, a life complete with Angry Birds:
The procedure is still a bit complicated (as you'll see for yourself below), but it's definitely a start - until z4Root, SuperOneClick, or some other one-click solution becomes available, I've got a feeling this is your best bet.
Building on the strength of the growing e-Reader market, bookstore giant Barnes & Noble has just formally unveiled its latest device: the NOOKcolor. Rumoured for some time now, but never offering much in the way of solid details, the covers are now off this full-color touchscreen device.
Hard internal specs are still few and far between, but in the case of an e-Reader one thing matters most: the screen. Thankfully B&N has seen fit to equip the NOOKcolor with a high resolution 1024x600 7" IPS display.