Jealous rage

Here in Europe we're used to getting the coolest new technology long after the Americans - and paying more for it. But it's not very often a piece of tech comes out that we've got little chance of getting our hands on at all.

But that's the case with the new Nook. The Nook, you might remember, is US bookseller Barnes & Noble's answer to Amazon's Kindle. The original was an odd beast, which combined an e-ink screen like the Kindle's with a small colour touchscreen powered by Google's Android software. Then last year came the Nook Colour, which had a full-size colour touchscreen and was basically a cheap Android tablet.

But this new Nook, which Barnes & Noble launched today, looks like the one to get. It's done away with the color strip for a full-size e-ink screen, but it's got one great feature the Kindle doesn't have: a touch screen.

This makes infinite amount of sense - every person who picks up our Kindle assumes it's a tablet and starts touching the screen anyway, only to look crestfallen and baffled when it's not. But that's not the only innovation - the new Nook, called the Simple Touch Reader, also has a fancy new type of e-ink that doesn't make such a long 'flash' when you 'turn' the 'page.'

It's gorgeous, cheap - a Kindle-matching $139 - and it's only for the Americans. Bah!

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