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Apesbrain
2012-01-02, 16:18
I would like to purchase one of these but I can't decide which. I've played with the Nook at my local B&N and liked it. The Fire is less expensive but I haven't experienced one "hands-on" yet. One use I have for it is to control my Squeezeboxes. If you are using one of these devices with your Squeezebox, what do you think about the experience (pros/cons)? Thanks.

tonyptony
2012-01-02, 19:12
I have the NT and it works very well as a SB controller. I'm using the free Logitech app right now and I'm having no troubles with it. As to which one would be better, I'm not sure. The NT entered the market as a potential sweetheart tablet. It was quickly rooted and showed signs of having a future in the Android open source developers' community - even with the locked bootloader. B&N recently issued an OS update that closed the open holes which were used to root it. Of course a workaround was found by the community, but it does not bode well for the future of the device. B&N is demonstrating a very closed attitude toward a device that (for God's sake) they trademarked as a Nook TABLET. I understand their POV, but if they wanted it to be a glorified Nook Color 2 they shouldn't have called it a tablet.

I've seen the Kindle Fire in the store, and it looks nice. Apart from the difference in user interface I think the NT seems to run slightly more smoothly, and (IMO) videos look better on the NT. The NT has a great screen; it also has real hard buttons where the KF does not. To me the NT also feels better in the hand. From what I've read Amazon has released an OS update which has improved their UI a bit, but also has closed some of the access which allowed it to be rooted. Don't know to what degree as I don't own one.

I have until Jan 31st to return the NT. If the gang at XDA Developers haven't figured out by then how to permanently get around the NT restrictons I may return it. I don't want to have to keep checking in every time B&N releases an OS update, hoping the team will find a way past it. The future of the Fire may be the same. The only diff is that Amzon has a much better app store than B&N right now, and I don't see anything being done by B&N to entice a whole bunch of app developers to generate NT apps for their own store.

There are other 7" tabs which are more open, so maybe that might be the way to go if you don't want to get on the "will they finally permanently crack it or not" merry-go-round. Probably more info than you wanted.

Apesbrain
2012-01-02, 19:49
@tonyptony, thanks for all that. "More info" is absolutely better as I'm just learning about both devices. You don't need to root either device to install a SB controller app, right? Also, both will install the SlideMe app? Thanks.

JJZolx
2012-01-02, 22:03
I have until Jan 31st to return the NT. If the gang at XDA Developers haven't figured out by then how to permanently get around the NT restrictons I may return it. I don't want to have to keep checking in every time B&N releases an OS update, hoping the team will find a way past it.

Is it necessary to keep the Tablet's OS updated? Can't it just be left alone?

firedog
2012-01-03, 04:11
Just read that the updated Fire is open to the Google Android App store, so it should make it easier to download and install apps from there, and not just from the Amazon store.

http://www.engadget.com/2011/12/21/kindle-fire-stops-blocking-android-market-site-hijacking-your-b/

bluegaspode
2012-01-03, 07:00
The article says, that the website is not blocked anymore, but installing Apps from the market still does not seem to be possible

maggior
2012-01-03, 07:27
My wife has a Kindle Fire that was given to her as a gift. I'm sad to say that the device is a huge dissapointment. If I had bought it myself, I would have returned it.

It's a real shame. I think Amazon is great - I'm a Prime member. I have had a Kindle Keyboard for a year now and still love it! My wife has one too. But they blew it with the Fire. If it worked well as a reader, I'd say I understood that - but it's less functional as a reader than the Kindle Keyboard!!

I'm tremendously annoyed by the fact that they don't allow you to get apps from the Andriod Marketplace. It means anything I got on my Xoom from the andriod marketplace can't be put on my Fire. Sure, there are probably ways to do it involving rooting and stuff, but I'm not going there.

I can't say how easy it would be to use the nook tablet, but certainly the Fire makes it diffcult to use it as a squeezebox controller.

Holding the Fire in my hand I have to say I like the size and form factor. The screen looks great too. That just makes it even more frustrating!

kc5f
2012-01-03, 07:52
After researching it, we bought a Nook Tablet and love it. The only advantage I've read to rooting it is to access the Android Marketplace directly, but even without rooting you can access the Amazon Market for more apps and better prices, including free. Beyond that, I've taken apps I have on my Android phone and emailed the apk files to myself, which I then open and load directly onto the (unrooted) Nook. So I don't see the lack of Android Marketplace as a killer.

(We haven't loaded SqueezeCommander onto the Nook, as it's my wife's toy and I use the copy on my phone all the time.)

TimT
2012-01-03, 08:52
I rooted my Kindle Fire after Amazon pushed out the 6.2.1 OS update. I then installed the Android Market app and have installed several apps from the market. My understanding is that many apps can be sideloaded onto the KF or installed via SlideMe.

To my knowledge, the Kindle Fire has never been marketed as a tablet, but instead as a device to consume media.

I never thought I'd want one but after discovering that the Kindle Fire can be both a reading device and an Android tablet, I am sold on it.

maggior
2012-01-03, 09:21
Beyond that, I've taken apps I have on my Android phone and emailed the apk files to myself, which I then open and load directly onto the (unrooted) Nook. So I don't see the lack of Android Marketplace as a killer.


How did you get the APK files off your phone to email them? I can't find them on my Xoom and I'm assuming it's because, without being rooted, I don't have access to the directory that contains the APK files.

tonyptony
2012-01-03, 10:23
@tonyptony, thanks for all that. "More info" is absolutely better as I'm just learning about both devices. You don't need to root either device to install a SB controller app, right? Also, both will install the SlideMe app? Thanks.

I honestly don't remember if being rooted was required, or whether the SB app could be installed simply by sideloading (which is a bit different). With the initial release, the NT could load some things via sideloading, and if you wanted to take the next step you could root and then do things like access Market. I had my NT rooted so early in the game I'm not sure. Be that as it may, if you were to buy a NT right now it would probably have version 1.4.1 installed on it, which is the one they just released. If that's the case you would have few choices - I don't think you could get sideloading to work without rooting, and you'd have to root to be able to get anything off Android Market. So there you go.

tonyptony
2012-01-03, 10:27
Beyond that, I've taken apps I have on my Android phone and emailed the apk files to myself, which I then open and load directly onto the (unrooted) Nook. So I don't see the lack of Android Marketplace as a killer.

kc5f, has your NT been upgraded to 1.4.1 yet? I wasn't sure if even the local install technique would still be possible after that.

tonyptony
2012-01-03, 10:40
Is it necessary to keep the Tablet's OS updated? Can't it just be left alone?

A fair question, JJ. That's what I'm doing right now. The only risk is if any of the content unique to a given tablet (in the case of NT, the B&N store and Netflix HD) are of interest to the user, and if they make changes to those features that cause them to stop working if you don't update the OS. In my case neither of those features is of any import so I can hold tight. But others' MMV. What will make the difference for me is if the XDA team can't get 2ndinit or alternate OSes bootable on the NT. In that case it really does become a dead end. Live with a rooted 1.4.0 or 1.4.1 on it and be left behind as newer and better tablet environments become available, or sit and wait for someone to root the next version when it comes out (and so on)? Neither is useful for any reasonable long haul.

Part of the reason the original Nook did so well was that it was open enough to keep the XDA community interested in doing stuff with (to) it. If the limitations I've just described are not eliminated, IME the developer community will never be as large as it was for the original.

kc5f
2012-01-03, 12:18
How did you get the APK files off your phone to email them? I can't find them on my Xoom and I'm assuming it's because, without being rooted, I don't have access to the directory that contains the APK files.
I use the Android app ASTRO as my file manager on my phone. One thing it does is create backups of all or selected apps, and they back up as APK files on the memory card. I just email them from there. Some work, some don't (if they require phone access, for example), and some work but think they're on the phone screen, so don't show up right on the Nook. In some cases, I installed an app on the phone just to back it up and send it over to the Nook, and then deleted the phone app.

kc5f
2012-01-03, 12:22
kc5f, has your NT been upgraded to 1.4.1 yet? I wasn't sure if even the local install technique would still be possible after that.
I haven't loaded anything new on the Nook in the past few weeks, so it may be possible that I can't do it any more. But I see the folks at Liliputing have been busy with figuring out sideloading on the Nook with 1.4.1 without rooting: http://liliputing.com/2011/12/sideload-apps-on-a-nook-tablet-with-os-1-4-1-no-root-required.html They're the ones with the instructions I used to load the Android side on the Nook in the first place.

maggior
2012-01-03, 13:34
I use the Android app ASTRO as my file manager on my phone. One thing it does is create backups of all or selected apps, and they back up as APK files on the memory card. I just email them from there. Some work, some don't (if they require phone access, for example), and some work but think they're on the phone screen, so don't show up right on the Nook. In some cases, I installed an app on the phone just to back it up and send it over to the Nook, and then deleted the phone app.

OK, this looks promising. I'll have to give this a go - thanks for the tip!

pski
2012-01-03, 16:36
OK, this looks promising. I'll have to give this a go - thanks for the tip!

My friend <?>

Why is synchronize so difficult?

You would think we would figure out interfaces. <Oh, WAIT ! What do you mean the traditional do not understand interfaces. I sure do. They have been a great source of income.>

What's and "in app purchase?" No ignorance is bliss.

P

exile
2012-01-03, 17:54
For versatility and apps why not just focus on an ipad instead? Ipeng on ipad is about all you'll ever need for an sb controller.

Apesbrain
2012-01-03, 18:02
why not just focus on an ipad instead?...because these devices cost half what an iPad does. Plus, some people just don't want to buy into Apple ecosystem.

exile
2012-01-03, 18:30
seems fair to want to save money but from the looks of this thread it's taking a lot of energy to figure out a replacement for ipeng.

maggior
2012-01-03, 19:49
Squeezecommander (the paid squeezebox controller app) is very capable and is just as good as iPeng. I had used iPeng on my iPod Touch for about a year before I got my Xoom. There are actually some aspects of SqueezeCommander that I perfer.

On my Kindle Fire, I was able to install Squeezecommander and I find it to run very very well. The size of the Fire is perfect IMHO as a SB controller. It's not too tiny and not too big like a 10" tablet.

No Android Marketplace isn't an issue here since you can pay and install from slideme.org. (I had bought it from Andriod MP and didn't want to pay twice - it's the only reason I had an issue).

I also loaded squeezeplayer - runs great and maintains the buffer playing FLAC. So it could make a nice portable player too :-).

maggior
2012-01-03, 19:55
I use the Android app ASTRO as my file manager on my phone. One thing it does is create backups of all or selected apps, and they back up as APK files on the memory card. I just email them from there. Some work, some don't (if they require phone access, for example), and some work but think they're on the phone screen, so don't show up right on the Nook. In some cases, I installed an app on the phone just to back it up and send it over to the Nook, and then deleted the phone app.

This worked beautifully - thanks so much for the tip. What I did was I used Astro on my Xoom to backup my apps into a directory I knew I could access from my PC when the Xoom was connected to it. I then connected the Kindle Fire and copied the files into the download directory. After that, I used the Quickoffice app on the Kindle (which was preinstalled) to "run" the files, which caused them to install.

Since one of the apps I copied over was dropbox, I won't have to go through this gyration again - I can just copy stuff to download using Astro and then upload via dropbox.

Sadly, the Kindle Fire seems to be a better squeezebox controller and player than an eReader.

Cheers!

JJZolx
2012-01-03, 20:38
seems fair to want to save money but from the looks of this thread it's taking a lot of energy to figure out a replacement for ipeng.

Like many things, probably a lot more energy in discussion than in actually doing.

maggior
2012-01-04, 07:03
I must be missing something with these comments above.

Squeezecommander works just as well (better in some ways) than iPeng. You can easily install it by registering with and installing the marketplace app at SlideMe.org. No rooting, no special permissions, all stock!

At $200, it's a heck of a lot cheaper solution than an iPad. Plus, the Fire is smaller, which is more than enough for a controller! I find it a better size for a controller app.

I don't have personal experience with the Nook Tablet, but if you can use it with SlideMe.org, there should be no problem. There you can get a refurb for much less than $200.

Compared to $500 or $600 for an iPad, I think this expended "energy" had a really good ROI! The $200 - $300 saved could buy a lot of new music!! :-).

Apesbrain
2012-01-04, 09:47
You can easily install it by registering with and installing the marketplace app at SlideMe.org. No rooting, no special permissions, all stock!
@maggior, are you able to confirm this is still true for Kindle Fire after recent 6.2.1 firmware update? Thanks.

maggior
2012-01-04, 10:01
My Fire has 6.2.1. I believe it had this installed when it was purchased.

I downloaded and installed the SlideMe app. I browsed apps but didn't purchase anything.

If you'd like, I'll see if I can find a free app on there to validate that installing from SlideMe works on the Fire.


Regarding using squeezecommander on the Fire, I did note one bit of dodgy behavior. There is a setting in squeezecommander that will allow it to prevent the device from being locked, allowing you to avoid unlocking with a swipe. When I changed this setting, squeezecommander crashed and continued to do so everytime I restarted it. I had to uninstall/reinstall.

Not a big deal, but something to be aware of.

Apesbrain
2012-01-04, 10:23
If you'd like, I'll see if I can find a free app on there to validate that installing from SlideMe works on the Fire.
I may head over to BestBuy later today to try out the Fire, but if you have a chance to confirm SlideMe access that would be very encouraging. Thanks!

JJZolx
2012-01-04, 10:35
The NT has a great screen; it also has real hard buttons where the KF does not.

How many hard buttons does the Nook Tablet have? I sure don't see many.

http://img2.imagesbn.com/images/141750000/141757332.JPG

Apesbrain
2012-01-04, 13:39
How many hard buttons does the Nook Tablet have? I sure don't see many.
They both have power buttons but only the Nook Tablet has hard buttons for volume +/- (upper right edge in your picture) and the "n" home button below the screen.

maggior
2012-01-04, 18:46
I may head over to BestBuy later today to try out the Fire, but if you have a chance to confirm SlideMe access that would be very encouraging. Thanks!

I reinstalled slideme and it was fine. I was also able to download and install an app from there. If you decide to use a Fire as an sb controller, you should be ok.

Good luck.

firedog
2012-01-05, 04:16
I must be missing something with these comments above.

Squeezecommander works just as well (better in some ways) than iPeng. You can easily install it by registering with and installing the marketplace app at SlideMe.org. No rooting, no special permissions, all stock!

At $200, it's a heck of a lot cheaper solution than an iPad. Plus, the Fire is smaller, which is more than enough for a controller! I find it a better size for a controller app.

I don't have personal experience with the Nook Tablet, but if you can use it with SlideMe.org, there should be no problem. There you can get a refurb for much less than $200.

Compared to $500 or $600 for an iPad, I think this expended "energy" had a really good ROI! The $200 - $300 saved could buy a lot of new music!! :-).

Hi-

A lot of us find the SB Touch too small to see from a listening distance - say 10ft or 3m. Is the Fire screen large enough for this? Can you for instance display album art and the album/song title and read the text from that distance?

Thanks

Apesbrain
2012-01-05, 13:46
Can you for instance display album art and the album/song title and read the text from that distance?
Maybe, but I think it's more likely you'll use the Kindle Fire (or Nook Tablet) at arm's length. The idea is to leave your Squeezebox player as is and keep the Fire on the coffee table in front of your listening spot or on the sofa next to you. Instead of using the stock remote control, you'd use an app on the Fire to power on your player (and server if needed), select music, play/pause, adjust volume, make playlists, etc. All the while having a nice, big color display of the cover art and all the track information right at your fingertips. And, if you want to check email or read a book while listening, you can use it for that also...

maggior
2012-01-05, 14:57
I agree with apesbrain that you are more likely to have a tablet sitting in front of you rather than sittin in a dock or stand by your entertainment system.

Artwork will certainly be shown larger, but the text would not be readable at a significant distance. The controller apps aren't set up for a distance viewing application.

TimT
2012-01-05, 19:06
Maybe, but I think it's more likely you'll use the Kindle Fire (or Nook Tablet) at arm's length. The idea is to leave your Squeezebox player as is and keep the Fire on the coffee table in front of your listening spot or on the sofa next to you. Instead of using the stock remote control, you'd use an app on the Fire to power on your player (and server if needed), select music, play/pause, adjust volume, make playlists, etc. All the while having a nice, big color display of the cover art and all the track information right at your fingertips. And, if you want to check email or read a book while listening, you can use it for that also...

That is exactly the way I am using my Kindle Fire.

NFLnut
2012-01-07, 13:28
I honestly don't understand all of the "I won't go there .." comments. As if hacking your Fire is against the law or something. Or that it is hard. It couldn't have been easier (it literally took me fifteen minutes and I didn't break a sweat). And the Amazon commandos aren't going to knock your door in the dark of night and put you in Amazon jail. It's YOUR device. Do what you want with it! True: it might (probably will) make it difficult/impossible to get help from Amazon if you have a problem, but then you have had the use of a solidly functional device until/if it breaks! Listen .. there aren't any moving parts, and it's REAL hard to bust a Fire (unless if you drop it on concrete, but then ..)!

Hack it, crack it, and then you have the best of both worlds. You can use it as a fully functional Amazon Kindle Fire, or you have the choice to "boot" on the fly to a fully functional Android tablet with FULL access to the Android marketplace. I use the GO Launcher EX frontend and it's awesome! And the FREE Squeezebox app from the Android marketplace works very well.

A quick Google search will yield site after site that details the steps to sideload everything you need .. and this will essentially end the need to ever sideload anything again .. and complete the process (I don't remember which site I ended up on, but they are all essentially the same).

As to Fire vs. the Nook .. I think the Nook is a better device with its faster proc and the ability to add an SD card, but the Fire wins with the ability to stream free videos from Amazon Prime and access all of your Amazon Kindle purchases. And with apps such as Subsonic and the Amazon cloud, I really don't need to have a large amount of storage for movies or music anyway.

BTW -- mods, if this somehow violates a board rule re: "hacking" a device, then I apologize in advance.

maggior
2012-01-07, 14:20
I'm not afraid of rooting or hacking - I just can't be bothered at this point. My free time is at a premium these days and I'd much rather spend it doing something productive.

NFLnut
2012-01-07, 20:53
I'm not afraid of rooting or hacking - I just can't be bothered at this point. My free time is at a premium these days and I'd much rather spend it doing something productive.


I understand. My time is pretty tight as well. But it only takes about 30 minutes to do. This includes the time to Google search the process and read up on how to do it. Maybe an hour if you have to search for a micro-USB cable. ;)

NFLnut
2012-01-07, 21:39
Sadly, the Kindle Fire seems to be a better squeezebox controller and player than an eReader.

Cheers!

It is what it is. I also bought my wife a Kindle Touch, as she found the backlighting on the Fire very tiring. And I must also admit that extended reading on the Fire is annoying (but I borrow her Touch for the occasional B&W read session). But a lot of what I read is technical pdf's which contain a lot of color charts/graphics and for that it is invaluable -- and something that the Touch just can't do. Plus the ability to surf the 'net, control my Squeezebox, watch videos, on a screen size that makes it much more portable than an iPad, all for $199? No brainer.

mlsstl
2012-01-31, 19:56
I'm not afraid of rooting or hacking - I just can't be bothered at this point. My free time is at a premium these days and I'd much rather spend it doing something productive.

I'm a bit confused. My Kindle Fire arrived yesterday and had both Orange and Squeeze Commander running very quickly.

I had to install the "Slideme' store app. Then I bought Orange (99 cents) and Squeeze Commander ($4.99) and both installed quickly. The only "change" was to tell the Kindle to allow the installation of apps in Settings/Device. (The default is "no".)

The Kindle Fire saw all three squeezeboxes on my network and found the server without hassle.

About the only way it could have been easier in my book is if the Kindle Fire was a dedicated SB controller.

maggior
2012-01-31, 22:02
I'm a bit confused. My Kindle Fire arrived yesterday and had both Orange and Squeeze Commander running very quickly.

I had to install the "Slideme' store app. Then I bought Orange (99 cents) and Squeeze Commander ($4.99) and both installed quickly. The only "change" was to tell the Kindle to allow the installation of apps in Settings/Device. (The default is "no".)

The Kindle Fire saw all three squeezeboxes on my network and found the server without hassle.

About the only way it could have been easier in my book is if the Kindle Fire was a dedicated SB controller.

The problem was that I had bought it already on the Google app store and didn't want to have to buy it again just to use it on the kindle. It was partly a technical exercise to see how/if I could install apps that came from the Google app store.

Glad you had no trouble. The fire does work quite well as a controller...and as a player too if you load squeeze player.

Have fun!