With Barnes & Noble set to shutter its UK Nook Store today, its customers are still scrambling to get their ebooks transferred to Sainsbury's. Some report that the transfer service is flaky, while others say that they have yet to receive the email so they can start the transfer process.
Everyone is still trying to parse the frustratingly incomplete FAQs on the Sainsbury's website and get their questions answered. For example, we know that Sainsbury's is promising a credit for any title that doesn't transfer from the Nook Store, but we still don't yet know everything about whether you will be able to read them on Nook devices.
That question came up in the comment section on this blog today, and after I spent a half hour tracking down the answer I realized that this was an answer worth sharing.
You see, Sainsbury doesn't say anything about managing a Nook device after the transition, It has an FAQ which neglects to mention that you won't be able to buy ebooks from the Nook any more (that would require B&N's servers) while at the same time offering a less than complete explanation of how to load ebooks on to a Nook Uk device (the instructions will not work for the latest Nook model, the Glowlight Plus).
And to make matters worse, that FAQ leaves out a few important details. For example, I found a B&N FAQ which informs us that an unregistered Nook could become useless in the UK after the end of May.
Can I still side-load eBooks on my UK NOOK device after March 15, 2016?
After March 15, 2016 you can still side-load compatible eBooks on your registered NOOK device by using the microSD card or by connecting your device to a computer via USB cable.
Refer to your devices User Guide for specific side-loading instructions:
In order to continue to have access to your device for side-loading you must sign in on your NOOK device and remain signed-in BEFORE May 31, 2016. After May 31, 2016 the option to sign in will no longer be available on your NOOK device.
In other words, if you should have to reset a Nook UK device in June, you won't be able to reauthorize it to the same account. And if someone gives you a Nook UK device in June or later, you won't be able to log in using your current credentials.
And since B&N requires that a Nook device be authorized before you can use it, that is a problem.
Sure, you might be able to set up a US account with bn.com and register the Nook to that account, but as I understand it that requires that the owner know about the option and (I think) have access to a VPN. And even at the best of times, the B&N website is wonky, so that option might not work.
B&N is about to render a lot of hardware worthless.
Okay, that sounds alarmist and clickbaity, but consider for a moment Nook UK device owners who are not particularly tech savvy. They will have a lot of problems come June if they try to register a Nook UK device.
And frankly, there's not much we can do about it other than to help each other out. So if you figure out a trick, workaround, we'd like to hear about it.
Or if you have a question about your Nook UK device, feel free to ask in this comment section.
image by wizardjournal