Nook color rooted: Hands on

Nookdevs have released information on how to root your nook color. So naturally, I had to run out and get one.  Who doesn’t want a multitouch android tablet for $250?  The instructions for rooting are extremely simple. You really only need microSD card and a Linux/Windows/Mac computer to connect to.  After rooting, your nook will work exactly as it did before, but you can now install android applications on it.  Many applications are built for a phone that has more physical buttons, so I have run into some issues, but over all, the applications that work tend to work well.

Join me after the break for more thoughts, a video of it in action, and a few pictures.

The specs are decent, with a 1024×600 screen, 8GB internal storage with microSD expansion slot, wifi, and an 800MHz ARM A8 processor. As you can see in the last picture, the viewing angle on the screen is fantastic. The battery probably won’t last the advertised 8 hours playing games, but I haven’t had to charge it yet and it has been playing music, browsing the web, and amusing children for about 24 hours now.

Installing software is a bit of a pain. You can’t install things directly from android stores online through the device yet. Instead, you have to search the web for the .apk file to download then install it via the command line on your computer. This can be a pain because the .apk files are rarely labelled with which release they are, so I’ve gotten a few older versions of software that simply wouldn’t work even though I’ve seen them working in other youtube videos.  So far I’ve gotten decent use out of the Dolphin browser, Google Maps, Pandora, and Angry birds.  I wouldn’t be surprised to see torrents popping up with bunches of tested applications for nook. hint. hint.

Removing applications can be a pain too. The theory is easy, you open the console and view what files are installed, then issue a simple command to remove the one you want. However, they don’t necessarily install with an obvious file name. For example, I installed google voice search. Realizing I don’t have a microphone, I went to remove it. However, there are several files labelled google and none have the word voice. How do I know which one it is? A quick google search would probably find me the answer, but I can’t wait till I can just drag the icon to the trash can.

Over all, I can’t wait to see how much better this gets. If I could install software from the android stores I find online, have flash, and remove applications easier, I’d be very happy.

Comments

  1. Aaron says:

    I’m curious as to why some people are experiencing battery issues. I played on my rooted NC on and off for about 8 hours today playing Angry Birds, reading Lord of The Rings, browsing reddit and the interwebs.

    When I finally hooked it up to a charger at the end of the day it had about 35% battery left.

  2. basotl says:

    Just oc’d to 950mhz stable. It appers it can do more in the future also.

  3. Mikey says:

    From what I’ve read the Archos 70 only has 256 mb of ram, the Nook Color has 512 mb. So kind of a big difference. People on Amazon who bought the Archos are saying the Archos 70 doesn’t even meet the min specs for android, it’s more of a “hacked-on” experience, and it’s also very flaky. I don’t own either device, but I would rather have a 15% slower machine with double the RAM any day of the week. ;-)

  4. Thomara956 says:

    KK so i just got a nook color and the one thing that is bothering me is that i can’t put books that i get form places other then BN on my home screen. If i root my nook color will it let me do that? A reply would be very much appreciated ty again awesome post by the way.

  5. Bill Porter says:

    Caleb, moved on to what? I decided against the nook due to the limited features, but still have not settled on something else yet.

    • Caleb Kraft says:

      @Bill Porter,
      To no tablet at all right now. I have an iPhone (shhhhh, don’t tell anyone) and 2 laptops. There’s no need for a tablet. However, if I were to get one, I’d probably go with a bigger one. I didn’t really like the 7 inch screen for web browsing at all.

  6. Thomara says:

    @ Caleb tyvm for your reply it is much appreciated i really only need the nook to read books a have loads that i want to get through but i mean i can’t always be at home so this makes it nicer for me to take with me to school and work and use between classes and on breaks jus that whole not being able to put my own books on the home screen was annoying me lol thanks again for the info i will root later added the site to my favs

  7. @Bill, you owe me a new keyboard!!!!

    This is pretty neat, I wasn’t aware that the Nook Color had such a high spec screen.

    Shame they didn’t use a Pixel QI screen, then the battery life would be a lot longer in “e-reader” mode with no energy hogging backlight.

  8. Rolli says:

    The nook does look really greate and move incredible. Great for books and also for games. But, i need it also to connect a monitor or projector. And i have no ideea if it is possible without a hdmi port. What do you think guys?

  9. Johnson says:

    So guys does this hack work on nook color????

  10. Paul Darr says:

    @Rolli That is the NC weakness. You would be better with another tablet if that is a primary needed feature for you.

    @Johnson Of course that is what the whole article is about. There is even HC on the NC.

  11. Rolli says:

    Oh, great to have your answer. I really like the nook, is perfect for all the stuff i need. Except that i really need also a way to send out video somehow. So, maybe is there some outside usb video card or .. ?

  12. Sheila says:

    Hi, I’ve just rooted my nookc and I can download angry birds but I can’t seem to find it on the nook or the extras… i have to manually search for it via the search icon and type the name of the app. It doesn’t appear on the download tap of the market. :(

    Is there a way to put the apps icon on the extras page because if i start downloading apps, it will be really hard to keep track of all the apps right.

  13. Paul says:

    @Sheila Not all applications will show in the default Barnes&Noble home. The best way to see them normally is to use an alternate launcher such as Zeam Launcher.

  14. Robin says:

    I have found once apps get installed from the market you need to power off then turn on & they will then appear in Extras.

  15. Frank Stevenson says:

    The new apps are also listed under the market app as downloaded. You can run them from there as well.

  16. Frank Stevenson says:

    I hacked my nook about a month ago and it works fairly well ( Droid v2.2). I have a couple of questions:
    1. The market app only lists about 15 apps with no way to see more. I have to search to find specific apps.
    2. Does the nook have a GPS chip? Some how the google maps app is able to find my location.
    3. How much trouble is it to go to Honecomb now that I have rooted the nook?

  17. Dnard says:

    Turn your NC sideways and scroll, more will show up.

  18. Daniel says:

    Hi Guys, reading a lot of the information posted, I just got my nook color 1.1.0 and had run autonooter 3.0.

    Managed to get whatever I want on this tablet now, as well as still keeping B&N’s interface. The underlying OS is Android Eclair 2.1 I believe?

    Tempted to run a full Rom as recently, things started getting strange, it gets sluggish and things wouldn’t stay on the screen. I might have got it bugged by some app though. Anybody having the same experience?
    Thanks.

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