A year and a half ago I ordered a Nook Simple Touch
from Barnes & Noble. I choose it because I liked its physical format and page
turning speed, the fact it utilized touch based operation and supported the
EPUB format (with or without Adobe DRM).
Though Barnes & Noble happily allows me to buy physical books and ships them to
The Netherlands, they won't allow me to buy ebooks from The Netherlands.
The logic evades me, but I knew that upfront. Fortunately all ebooks in The
Netherlands and from publishers such as O'REILLY and
The Pragmatic Bookshelf are in EPUB format. These
are easily sideloaded onto the Nook using Calibre
Initially I only read one book at a time. But in due course I started reading
more books simultaneously; one or two technical books and one novel for
instance. This is when I started noticing that the Nook lost the last read page
information when I switched back and forth between books. Very annoying but not
insurmountable. I suspected a firmware upgrade might solve this seemingly
simple issue, but alas, after three firmware upgrades (I'm now at v1.2.1) the
issue is still there.
I also started highlighting important bits of information especially in the
technical books. The Nook keeps loosing these too. This is now way beyond
Trying to find out more information about both issues I came across a post on
the Barnes & Noble's Community forum.
It suggests that it is an issue specifically to sideloaded books and only
apparent when you use the Home Screen or Reading Now icon to open an affected
in that same forum emphasize the problem and offer workarounds that don't
really work. It puzzles me why basic functionality in a widely used product
remains broken for so long.
A problem that's over 1.5 years old, affects many users, and hasn't been fixed
in the last three firmware updates must be hard to troubleshoot and fix for
Barnes & Noble, right? Well, a member of XDA Developers has proven that
assumption wrong as well. In an, already, 1.5 years old post the issue is
analysed and the culprit identified. So with all the hard work done by their
users all that Barnes & Nobel has to do is take responsibility, show that they
value their users and FIX IT!
I emailed Barnes & Noble with this body of collected experiences of me and
other users, proposed workarounds and even the detailed troubleshooting and
suggested solution on the XDA Developer forum. Their reaction:
The only troubleshooting procedure we have for copied or sideloaded eBooks
is to completely power off your NOOK and turn it back on to check if that
will resolve your issues.
If the steps mentioned above may not work, we ask that you call us [...],
select option 2 for NOOK Support and please ask for your call to be
transferred to the next level of support.
I've provided them with pretty much every bit of information available on the
issue, and they tell me to power my Nook off and turn it back on. Guess what,
my next ereader will not be a Nook.
I seems that loosing data is a problem
that is present among other Barnes & Noble ereading products as well.
Their Android app too looses notes
much to this person's chagrin.
And for what it is worth,
the Nook Simple Touch is still at firmware v1.2.1.
Barnes & Noble's message is clear: Don't use our ereading products!
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