Hands-on with the B&N nook update 1.2.0, available now

Hands-on with the B&N nook update 1.2.0, available now

Summary: A couple hours ago I mentioned that a rumored 1.2.0 software version may be coming to nook owners today and in hopes that this was true I went to the Barnes & Noble ebook store on my nook and bought a single issue of a newspaper. I haven't yet tried out a newspaper and wanted to see what it looked like on the nook and figured getting the nook to actively connect might help prompt for a firmware update. After my newspaper issue was downloaded, I saw a pop-up in the bottom right corner that showed it was downloading an update. After a few minutes (connected via 3G) my nook went through the update process (make sure you have adequate battery available) and is now confirmed as having software version 1.2.0 on board

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A couple hours ago I mentioned that a rumored 1.2.0 software version may be coming to nook owners today and in hopes that this was true I went to the Barnes & Noble ebook store on my nook and bought a single issue of a newspaper. I haven't yet tried out a newspaper and wanted to see what it looked like on the nook and figured getting the nook to actively connect might help prompt for a firmware update. After my newspaper issue was downloaded, I saw a pop-up in the bottom right corner that showed it was downloading an update. After a few minutes (connected via 3G) my nook went through the update process (make sure you have adequate battery available) and is now confirmed as having software version 1.2.0 on board. It did take a few minutes to start up after the update was applied so be patient at this point.

I jumped around the device a bit to see if anything major stood out and discovered the following on my nook:

  • Newly designed icons are present in the lower color display
  • The navigation up and down button in the lower touch display are bigger (one of my favorite improvements)
  • You can sort you My Documents library by title and author
  • The Lend Me icon is clearly present so you know which books can be loaned out
  • There are no longer weird title issues in content I side-loaded myself from other ebook stores
  • Overall response to touch and navigation seems snappier with

Even after the update, it was great to see the nook go right back to where I was in the current book I am reading.

I do not see a way to delete sample and books you have downloaded and would like to be able to do this right on my nook. There also does not appear to be a way to go to a designated page number, which I think would be helpful.

I plan to visit a Barnes & Noble store soon to see if the capability to read full books has been turned on with this update as well since that is the one last thing I know of that is supposed to be a part of the in-store experience.

My Barnes & Noble contact told me that you can actually load the update manually if you don't want to wait since the OTA update will roll out over the next week. Simply visit the nook support site and follow the instructions for the software update. The support site also confirmed exactly what Gizmodo had listed for updates you will see. Isn't it great to have a device with a company providing updates so quickly to make the entire experience better?

Topics: Legal, Enterprise Software, Hardware, Mobility

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8 comments
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  • Pictures or video?

    Hi, can you post some pictures or a video of the new software in action?
    Thanks.
    WesRod
  • RE: Hands-on with the B&N nook update 1.2.0, available now

    I will later tonight and will include it in this post.
    palmsolo (aka Matthew Miller)
  • Update 1.2.0 improves newspaper downloads. A little.

    I have been VERY frustrated as I really find the Nook
    attractive for having the daily newspaper downloaded
    and ready to read in the morning. But my LA Times
    wanted to download at precisely 5:27am every day, and
    if wireless was off at that time or no reception - the
    paper would not download, and neither would it arrive
    later even if you turned on the wireless and got some
    bars on your signal indicator. I simply would not get
    that day's paper until the next morning when it would
    arrive with that day's edition. Ugh. Emails to B&N
    customer service received a few replies, none of which
    were helpful about the actual problem.
    Today I missed the paper again. After installing the
    update manually, I was able to see that there was a new
    newspaper edition waiting to be downloaded. I could
    manually download it, though it took a while.
    Improvement.
    But contrast this with the Kindle 2, which would
    simply download the paper every day and needed no
    manual prompting and waiting if it somehow missed the
    earliest opportunity. If you had wireless off, you
    simply turn it on and the Kindle will fetch whatever is
    waiting for you from your Amazon account.
    Next, the Nook battery only lasts about 2-3 days if
    you leave the cell wireless on. I finally found that
    you could turn off the cell by turning 'Airplane mode'
    on. This is poor labeling. Also, if you do this, you
    will definitely not get the paper delivered
    automatically. So pick one - longer battery life or
    your paper in the morning.
    Better, but still not very good. Not at all sold on
    the Nook.
    ArtInvent
    • I'm much more sold on it than you.

      I see this becoming a solid platform. However I'd agree in that I think the versioning of the software should be v 0.12 as opposed to v1.2. There are a lot of bugs, but for the most part is a very usable tool. I'm also not so sure that all the issues you speak of are issues with the nook more than issues on the other end.
      People
  • RE: Hands-on with the B&N nook update 1.2.0, available now

    too bad it shows Palin, Beck, Washington Times as chosen
    items. Talk about awful publications.
    daedalus2
  • How long before Andrew Nusca joins "The Mobile Gadgeteer"?

    You see, someone needs to a$$lick Steve Jobs in this kind
    of blog. Nusca is an expert in doing that, so he is the
    natural choice for this.
    markbn
  • 1.2 Nook Color Update....meh~

    I have been so frustrated with the delays and avoiding rooting my Nook Color and now that I have 1.2, all I can say is ....meh. <br>184 apps available. All costly. Angry Birds is $3.00! I know these things take time, but at time of purchase in December, was promised android like capabilities in early Jan. <br>Lots of bugs and seriously flawed common sense operations (Music playlists can only be made manually on tablet, you can't close attachments in email w/o leaving email all together!) which is understandable early on, but BN has not been known so far as quick responders and has had a LOT of time to get these worked out before release date. I Am giving them a few more months before I go for the full on Root. <br>LOVE it as an eReader and think the battery life is amazing! My android cell's life is a joke. Samsung epic 4.<br>My advice to shoppers is to wait to purchase if you haven't already unless you want a beautiful eReader. Or are ready to void your warranty by Rooting. <br>And please, can we keep the politics at the political sites? "I'm right and everybody else is an idiot. Blah Blah Blah..." Seriously!
    junipur32
    • RE: Hands-on with the B&N nook update 1.2.0, available now

      @junipur32
      Agree 100%. The push-through of the update is done randomly according to B&N customer NONservice, and every one I exchanged emails with there were thoughtless, uncompassionate clods. The Nook experience has been crummy to bad, not what I had hoped for at all.
      lkusa