Cheap tablets aren’t hard to come by, with Amazon’s Fire line the de facto choice for most consumers. The Fire tablets are missing Google Play support out of the box, but fortunately Barnes & Noble is here with a newer, bigger NOOK tablet.
B&N already sells a 7-inch NOOK, but if you want something more for watching Netflix or other video services, the bigger model is going to be your best bet. The bigger NOOK features a 10.1-inch, IPS display with a 16:9 aspect ratio and 1920×1200 resolution. You get 32GB of internal storage, as well as a Micro-SD slot for expansion. The tablet charges via Micro-USB, and includes a 3.5mm headphone jack.
The tablet also includes POGO pins to connect a keyboard cover or charging dock, though right now there’s no mention of the price or availability of either of those. Battery life is just okay, with 8 1/2 hours of purported use for video playback and browsing. If you just use this as an e-reader, you’ll likely get more life from each charge.
One really easy place for manufacturers to save money on tablets in this price range is by having lackluster Wi-Fi specs; fortunately, that’s not the case here. You get full support for 5GHZ Wi-Fi, so your app downloads should be nice and fast. Finally, you have front- and rear-facing cameras, and while these won’t compete with smartphone cameras, they’ll be nice for video calls.
You can get the NOOK app on other devices, so you don’t specifically need this tablet to read your e-book collection, but even if you don’t care for reading long novels, this is still a really compelling product. Amazon’s latest Fire HD 10 starts at $20 more, and you have to jump through hoops to download applications from the Google Play Store. The Play Store has a much larger app catalog than Amazon’s store, so being able to just turn the tablet on and start downloading all your apps is a huge plus.
If the new NOOK piques your interest, you can pre-order it now.