I woke up to a green ‘n’ yesterday morning in my Notification alerts on my Nook Color. Even though I use my Nook Color daily, I had no idea another software update was coming down the pipe. The last update arrived in the late Winter/early Spring. First thing I did (on my laptop, not my Nook) was to read the ‘What’s New’ section on the B&N Nook Color Software Updates page:
The NOOK Color Ver1.4.3 update contains new features and enhancements, including:
- Zoom view in comics and graphic novels
- 2-Page mode in landscape for viewing PagePerfect™ and PDF documents
- Other minor system enhancements
Meh. I don’t read comics and graphic novels, so what do I care about my ability to zoom while reading those formats?
I quickly tested the second feature enhancement, since I had just received my astronomy club newsletter via e-mail a couple of days earlier. The Reader software loaded the PDF and I flipped the Nook Color to landscape orientation. The first time I did this, the Reader application appeared to reset itself, taking me back to the Home screen.
So, just to be on the ‘safe’ side, I did a shutdown on the Nook Color and let it sit powered off for a few minutes. I turned it back on and then returned to reading my astronomy newsletter PDF. This time, I could see the two page view in landscape orientation, but the Reader application did seem to have problems with the odd page at the end. In other words, unless there’s an even number of pages to display side-by-side, the Reader application doesn’t display anything for the last page, just a blank black screen. Once I flipped the Nook Color back to portrait orientation, the final page became visible.
I had hoped that the ‘Other minor system enhancements’ might have improved the wireless functionality of the Nook Color, but alas that does not appear to be the case. For the most part, I have very few issues with the wifi on my Nook Color, so long as I have access to visible wireless networks, like my own personal ones at home and those provided by libraries or lunch time hotspots near my work.
But whenever I need to access a hidden secured network, I run into extreme difficulties. My most recent frustrations include a change to the wireless networks provided by my employer. At the end of May, we completely redid our wireless networks to include a visible internal secured network (for laptops mostly so you can walk into a conference room and not have to plugin a cable), a visible secured guest network (for clients and venders) and a hidden secured network (for iPhones, iPads and other tablets). For most of June, my Nook Color had no problem connecting to this hidden network. About a week ago, something changed and now the Nook Color refuses to find or connect to the hidden network. I’ve created and recreated the connection information a half dozen times with the same results … no connection. I contacted the network engineer about the hidden network, but he assures me no changes were made to that hidden network recently.
So now, when I get to work, I just turn the wifi off on my Nook Color, so it won’t sit there scanning all day long and wasting the battery. When I take my lunch break in the break room, I can still read my ebooks, but I can’t check my e-mail or the weather or any other normal activity that requires Internet access on my Nook Color. I can retreat to the lobby and connect to the free wifi provided by the Kansas City Public Library, but that’s such a hassle.
I have another ten months on my extended warranty on the Nook Color. By then, I’ll be itching to wipe the internal storage and root it to a true Android tablet, unless I make the jump to a smartphone, like the Samsung Galaxy S III or the Galaxy Tablet.