I guess I cannot let an announcement about the Barnes & Noble Nook eReaders go by without saying something. No, I am not getting another Nook or at least not anytime soon. For many the Nook Color and new Nook Tablet can be considered the "Poor Man's or Woman's Tablet" because they are cheaper ($199 and $249 respectively) than any other Android Tablet. I am not going to discuss the Kindle Fire yet because it just came out and time will tell if it can hold its own against the Nooks. Also, there are not that many apps for the Kindle Fire yet. The iPad is in a class all by itself.
Earlier today I was going through the apps available for my wife's Nook Color just to see how things have grown. You still won't get as many apps as you would from the Android Market Place or Amazon App Store but the selection has grown. There were some apps I saw that impressed me as well. These are apps that could serve a teacher looking to break free from the front of the class. I have mentioned some of these apps in other blog posts but they are worth mentioning again because being available for the Nook Color and Tablet surprised me.
- Evernote: The app I probably use most of the time outside of social networking. I am always jotting down notes and sometimes inserting pictures. This can be from articles I see online to things I may want to purchase later, to capturing thoughts rattling around my head. The thing that makes Evernote stand out is it syncs to all other versions of Evernote. Given Evernote's philosophy I should not be surprised it is on the Nooks.
- Splashtop: This was a real shocker. It never occurred to me to use a Nook Color to wirelessly mirror what was on a computer. The screen size of the Nooks may make controlling a computer on the devices a challenge but it should work.
- Quickoffice Pro: For those who need to draft a document, start or edit a PowerPoint, or crunch a few numbers this is your app. It has been available for Nook for awhile but as I am using other tablets the importance of this app on Nook is significant. The ability to connect to cloud storage such as Dropbox or Google Docs is a huge advantage.
- Dropbox: Another app that surprised me but it should not. When I draft a document on a tablet then cloud storage is a must. Dropbox makes the storage and, more importantly, the sharing of files very easy. I would hate to think about how to get a document from the Nook to other computers without it.
- Skitch: This app allows you to annotate pictures and screen shots. I am not sure how this would work on a Nook but if it does then it should be a useful app.
- Drop2sync: This app allows you to sync different types of files to your Nook. Works with Dropbox and Box.net.
There are other apps that I may not have mentioned that could help teachers break the chains that bind them to the front of their classrooms. Also, I would like to see Edmodo port an App for the Nook. At least one does not have to look on with envy at another teacher with a more expensive tablet computer to get the some functionality.