Reader Rocket Review Our evaluation of HD vs Fire HD 8.9"

Display

How do the screens stack up?

Resolution, pixel density, Screen size and anti-glare

Bookstore

How good is the supporting ecosystem?

e-bookstore size, average NYT best sellers price, NYT's top selling titles and 4 more

Performance

How responsive and how long does the e-reader last?

Battery life, SunSpider and Recharge time

Reviews

How do our trusted review sites rank these products?

Reviews from reviews.cnet.com and pcmag.com

Reader Rocket Score

Display, Bookstore, Performance and Reviews

Winner
Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9" 

Reader Rocket recommends the Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9"  based on its display.

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Differences What are the advantages of each

Front view of Barnes & Noble NOOK HD

Reasons to consider the
Barnes & Noble NOOK HD

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Expandable memory microSD (up to 64GB) vs None Most E-Readers don't have an expansion slot ; store more content with a removable microSD card
Significantly lighter weight 315 g vs 567 g Around 45% lighter weight
Supports the ePub open format Yes vs No About half of E-Readers support the ePub open format
Uses an open platform Yes vs No Somewhat common; can download ebooks from any source offering formats supported by device
Quicker recharging 4.5 hours vs 5 hours 10% quicker recharging; requires less time to re-charge
Front view of Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9"

Reasons to consider the
Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9"

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Has cellular connectivity 4G vs None Very few E-Readers have cellular data ; download content anywhere with a cellular connection
Much more storage capacity 55.7 GB vs 8 GB Around 7x more storage capacity
Doesn't use a proprietary power connector No (micro-USB) vs Yes (30-pin port) Somewhat common; Standardized connectors are cheap, compatible and easy to find
Customer loyalty program Yes (Kindle Store) vs No (NOOK Book Store) About half of E-Readers support customer loyalty program
Significantly thinner 8.8 mm vs 11 mm Around 20% thinner ; easily slides into bags
Much better Input/Output port micro-USB vs 30-pin port 100% better Input/Output port
Bigger screen 8.9" vs 7" More than 25% bigger screen
Higher resolution screen 1920 x 1200 vs 1440 x 900 Around 80% higher resolution screen
Bigger bookstore 4 M book (Kindle Store) vs 3.27 M book (NOOK Book Store) More than 20% larger e-bookstore size; totalling paid & free books, this reader's bookstore offers a larger selection of reading material
Supports the Mobi e-book format Yes vs No About half of E-Readers support the Mobi e-book format
Faster processor 1,500 MHz vs 1,300 MHz More than 15% faster processor; a faster processor improves responsiveness

Reviews Word on the street

NOOK HD  vs Kindle Fire HD 8.9" 

7.6
7.7

7.2
7.3

Overall

7.3 Out of 10
8.0 Out of 10

Specifications Full list of technical specs

screen

NOOK HD  vs
Kindle Fire HD 8.9" 
Screen resolution 1440 x 900 1920 x 1200
Screen size 7" 8.9"
Pixel density 242 ppi 254 ppi
Built-in light LED backlight LED backlight
Screen type LCD LCD
Touchscreen Capacitive Capacitive
Multitouch Yes Yes
Flashes screen black during page turns No No

features

Sync across multiple devices Yes Yes
Note taking Yes Yes
Text to speech Yes Yes
Directly download library e-books to device Yes Yes
Web browser Yes Yes
Stereo speakers Yes Yes
Evernote integration Yes Yes
Landscape mode Yes Yes
Accelerometer Yes Yes
Parental controls Yes Yes

storage

Internal storage 8 GB 55.7 GB
Expansion slot microSD (up to 64GB) None
Memory 8 GB 64 GB

connectivity

NOOK HD  vs
Kindle Fire HD 8.9" 
Input/Output port 30-pin port micro-USB
Cellular data None 4G
Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n 802.11b/g/n

technical specs

RAM 1,024 MB 1,024 MB
Processor 1,300 MHz 1,500 MHz
Document support
XLS
AAX
DOC
PRC
AZW
PDF
XLX
TXT
PPT
ePUB
CBZ
HTML
MOBI
KF8

bookstore

Uses an open platform Yes No
Bookstore NOOK Book Store Kindle Store
EBookstore size 3.27 M book 4 M book
Free content free content 1.84 M books 2.5 M books
Customer loyalty program No Yes
Average NYT best sellers price $9.64 $9.24
Number of NYT top-selling titles offered+ 38 38
Reader-to-reader lending Yes Yes
Cloud storage Yes Yes
Reading apps iOS, Android, PC and Mac iOS, Android, BlackBerry, Windows Phone, PC and Mac
Additional electronic offerings newspapers, magazines, comics/graphic novels, textbooks, and audio-books newspapers, magazines, comics/graphic novels, textbooks, audio-books and blogs
Has retail store locations Yes No

form factor

Size 194.4 x 127.1 x 11 mm 240 x 164 x 8.8 mm
Weight 315 g 567 g
Interface touchscreen touchscreen
Headphone jack Yes Yes
Barnes & Noble NOOK HD
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Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9"
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