Nook Touch vs Sony Reader PRS-T1 (Video)

Nook Touch vs Sony PRS-T1

This Nook Touch vs Sony PRS-T1 comparison review outlines the differences and similarities between two of the top ebook readers on the market.

Both are a lot alike in many ways, but each one offers features the other does not. First let’s start with a video review comparing them and then move on to what they have in common and the advantages for each.

Here’s the links to the individual reviews for more complete details: Nook Touch Review, Sony PRS-T1 Review.

Nook Touch vs Sony PRS-T1 Video Comparison

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Nook vs Sony: Similar Features

  • 6″ E Ink Pearl display
  • 800 x 600 resolution, 16 levels of gray
  • Infrared touchscreen
  • Wi-Fi
  • MicroSD card slot for cards up to 32GB
  • Android operating system
  • Can root to install Android apps: Nook Root; Sony Root
  • Adjustable font types and sizes
  • Support EPUB, PDF, and TXT files, including Adobe DRM
  • Active hyperlinks
  • PDF reflow
  • Notes, highlights, bookmarks, dictionary
  • Search, jump to page, table of contents
  • Support for library ebooks

Sony PRS-T1 Advantages

  • Web browser works very well: can download ebooks from non-Sony sources, reference Wikipedia or Google search while reading, transfer ebooks via Dropbox, etc
  • On-screen notes and markup
  • Export notes with desktop software
  • Touchscreen supports multi-touch for pinch-zooming
  • Headphone jack for listening to audio
  • Text memo and drawing apps
  • Create collections to organize content
  • Comes with a stylus, albeit a cheap one
  • Better PDF support, with more zooming options
  • Adjust contrast
  • Available internationally
  • Comes in three colors: red, white, and black
  • Comes with 12 dictionaries to the Nook’s 1
  • Language interface: English, French, German, Dutch, Italian, and Spanish
  • History remembers previously visited pages
  • Landscape mode
  • Lighter: 5.9 ounces vs 7.48 ounces
  • Download library ebooks directly

Nook Touch Advantages

  • Barnes and Noble’s ebooks and periodicals (Sony doesn’t support B&N’s EPUB)
  • Faster page turns, ebooks load faster, reacts quicker
  • Partial page refresh, full refresh once every six pages
  • Share recommended reading and passages with friends via Facebook, Twitter, and eMail
  • Currently works much better rooted than the Sony, with more apps and faster, smoother operation
  • Adjust line spacing
  • Turn on and off publisher defaults
  • Battery life rated twice as long
  • Doesn’t have a glossy bezel
  • More sorting options in library
  • LendMe feature for lending and borrowing ebooks, even from the Nook itself (not all ebooks can be lent or borrowed)
  • Read ebooks for free in Barnes and Nobles stores (one hour daily)
  • Page buttons on each side of the screen
  • More comfortable-to-hold design
  • Rate ebooks and write reviews
  • Refurbished Nooks can be had for just $79, and come with free shipping and the same warranty as new Nooks

Nook Touch vs Sony PRS-T1 Conclusion

The good news is that the Nook Touch and Sony PRS-T1 are both really good ebook readers and you can’t really go wrong with either of them. Both cost about the same price too, the Sony is $149 and the Nook is $139icon. It just comes down to what features are the most important to you.

To recap, the Sony’s main advantages are the web browser, on-screen notes, audio support, and pinch zooming. And the Nook’s main advantages are that it is faster, has ebook lending and sharing features, refurbs are $79, and rooting to run Android apps works a lot better at this point than the Sony.

16 Responses to “Nook Touch vs Sony Reader PRS-T1 (Video)”

  1. Hi Nathan,

    Thank you for the comparison.

    There is a point I want to make with respect to rooting. It is worth it if an only if you plan to use other apps than those installed and free yourself from what ever vendor. But, what users really want, is just a book.

    By the way, there is on XDA a new launcher developed for the rooted Nook Touch. It is a modified stock launcher where each panel can be personalized. I haven’t tried it, but it seems interesting… Maybe worth a try?

  2. Partial page refresh that can’t be turned off is only an advantage if black flash bothers you more than fuzzy anti-aliasing. Otherwise it goes in the con column.

    (Ironically, the Sony tries to speed up the refresh, and leaves a bit of ghosting anyhow.)

    I would note, however, that of all the popular DRM schemes (Amazon, B&N and Kobo), the B&N is the easiest to work around. The Sony (as well as Kobo/Kindle) is more than able to read a liberated B&N book, which is great considering how they are often much less expensive (when not agency priced.)

  3. I hope they do get rid of the black flash from the sony. It is the main reason I have not went out and got one yet! I think that the fact that the nook is only available in ONE country should have counted for a bit more in your comparison.
    Keep up the good work!

  4. For international use the stock Nook is a poor choice unless once is willing to jump through a few hoops. The Sony and Kobo work very well for book purchases overseas.
    Thank you, Nathan, for your good and timely reviews.

  5. Two things:

    1) Have you tried Graffiti for Android on the Sony? Will it work?

    2) Does the Kindle app work as smoothly on the Nook Touch as it does on the Sony, or does it do the sliding animation for changing pages?

    • The Kindle app works just a little smoother on the Sony as far as page-turns, but it’s slower to load. The Nook is pretty smooth with the tap, but it does stutter with an extra flash now and then I think because it has the partial refresh so you can see the letters sliding slightly. They both turn pages at the same speed.

      Apparently I got Graffiti Pro from Amazon awhile ago and never tested. I loaded it onto the Sony but it just shows up as a black box. About the only thing that works is the period….

      The AnySoftKeyboard works well on the Sony, not sure why Graffiti doesn’t.

  6. thanks for the very interesting comparison.
    I have a question about the glossy plastic case of the Sony PRS T1: does somebody had the possibility to use it under direct sunlight? Is the glossy plastic a problem (reflection, etc) or is a negligible effect on reading experience?

    Living in Italy, I have not yet had the possibility to have in my hands the new sony reader, but I’m interested in buying it as my first reader.
    Today in Italy there is not a big choice of readers : kobo & nook not available, kindle only via US shop (high cost due to taxes+shipping), booken’s high priced. Sony seems to me a good choice, even if the sony IT price is 199euros (277USD !!!) whereas in other EU countries official price is “only” 149


    • The glossy plastic isn’t too bad but you do have to accommodate it for it sometimes by tilting the Reader one way or the other. I’m going to put a skin on mine once Decalgirl gets some in for the PRS-T1.

  7. @tieffe & ana:

    I’m another EU-based reader and I do own a Nook Touch and it is good investment with respect to other ereaders.

    1) you can activate it without B&N
    2) you can root it and play with other formats than .epub (doc for example)
    3) you’re not stuck amazon.

    Overall I’m happy and find it much better than my dad’s kindle.

    Ps: you can buy it in Switzerland. Check

  8. hey, I’m about to but a sony PRS-T1 in the US but moving back to the UK soon. Will it work the same? I know some past ereaders get blocked abroad!

  9. Nathan, a good comparison as always, but I know the Sony e-reader can change the screen saver images like the Nook. I do this on my PRS 950SC and the T1 has the feature in the personalization section. I believe the T1 allows you to specify either the cover of the current book you’re reading or your own images.

  10. Does the extra apps gained by rooting improve magazine viewing ie a pc gamer magazine(with lots of images) with either of these ebook readers. The reason i ask is that i have seen several sony prs-t1 videos with very slow load times for pdfs and the inability to zoom into read the text. As shown in this video

  11. I live in Israel and not sure if i should buy the nook or prs-t1. I intend to root the device, so which one would be better out of the U.S, and what is you personal choice?

    • The Sony is probably going to be the better option outside the US since they at least sell them internationally and support some additional languages. Plus development on the Nook has majorly tapered off over the past few months.