My tips and app recommendations for new rooted Nook Color users
I've been pouring through forums and other sources on the internet since I got my Nook Color and rooted it. I thought I'd share tips and links that I've found along the way. I am in no way an expert, I am just sharing what I've found works best for me along the way. I don't claim to be the source of any of this information, I'm just hoping to make it easier for those of you just getting started with your rooted Nook Color. Please feel free to correct me on any info in this post that I might have goofed on.
First things first, you should choose an alternate Android launcher to use instead of the built in Nook UI. You can choose from a variety of launchers including Launcher Pro, ADW, Zeam, and a few more. I recommend searching for an overview of each before making your choice. You can always try each one if you're not sure.
I personally use and recommend Zeam. It is smooth, full featured and easily customizable.
Once you have installed and chosen the launcher you want to go with do the following to set it to load by default:
- Press the n (home) button
- a menu window will appear showing the default Home Launcher and Zeam Launcher
- if you want to set your new launcher to load by default check the check box and then press the launcher of your choice.
Aldiko Premium – I've found this is the best ereader on the Nook Color with the most features and customization. I really like the ability to customize the text and background colors for both Day and Night reading modes, and the ability to adjust screen brightness by sliding along the left side of the screen. It has a nice interface and now supports PDFs (though not yet in text mode).
Google Books and Amazon Kindle – these apps are both good if you have or want to purchase from the respective online ebook stores.
EzPDF Reader – good customizable PDF reading.
Overdrive Media Console – a library app that allows you to checkout books from your local library system in epub, PDF or audiobook MP3 format. To get this working properly on your Nook Color: add your local library source from within the app. Click on the library source from within Overdrive and open in a browser (I've found Dolphin Browser HD to work well for me). Navigate to a book and click on Download. A page will open with some text strings on it but don't fret. Click on Menu>More>Save Page. Next, navigate to the file using Astro File Manger. Touch the file and Astro will ask what program to open it with. Make your choise (I prefer Aldiko Premium). Aldiko will ask you if you have an Adobe Digital Editions account. If not click register, fill in the info and submit. Viola, you are now reading an ebook checked out from your local library on your rooted Nook Color.
Calibre (for PC) – I highly recommend using Calibre to manage your ebook collection on your computer. You can use calibre to convert to another format (I convert everything to epub), add missing metadata, add or change book covers and to push books to your device in the file and folder structure of your choosing.
Comics – this is a fantastic app if you enjoy comic books. It's interface is great with a huge selection of digital comic books. The books can be presented with a nice panel by panel mode that makes for a great experience.
Vintage Comic Droid – tons of old school classic comics for free
GoodReads.com – join here to access a great community for tracking and sharing what you've read, what you are currently reading and what you plan to read later. You can link up with friends and browse forums for reviews and suggestions on what to read next. There is an app you can install to browse the site more easily on the mobile screen as well.
Screen Filter – use this app to make the screen darker than the lowest setting. I use this when reading outside of Aldiko in Google Books or Amazon Kindle.
Where to find ebooks:
Apps and Gaming
It is currently hard to find all available Android apps and games in the Market app because it doesn't properly recognize your device, and hence doesn't know all of the apps and games your device supports. There are other options to properly find apps though. As a general tip, if you can find an app made to be compatible with the Galaxy Tab or Galaxy S, it should work flawlessly on your Nook Color
(Disclaimer – these sites allow you to download many paid apps for free so are not necissisarily a legal source of apps. Use at your own risk.)
applanet.net – register and download the applanet app to gain access to the full Android store
Gameloft.com - gameloft makes some great HD games for Android devices. You can purchase these games from their website. You cannot specify your device as Nook Color, but if you set your device as a Galaxy Tab you will be able to download a version of the game fully compatible with the Nook Color. Just have the link sent to your cell phone, then type the link in on a browser on your Nook Color. You should be prompted to download the apk for the game onto your device. You can then install as usual. I recommend Dungeon Hunter HD (a very addicting Diablo clone) and Asphalt 5 HD (a great arcade racer).
Some of my favorite games, many of them are free:
Angry Birds (of course)
Mahjong for Android
Dungeon Hunter HD
Word Search Unlimited Free
Pulse – and awesome viewer for newsfeeds and sources. It presents each feed as a row of thumbnails that you can scroll through horizontally. You can scroll through pages of feed rows vertically. Individual articles can be viewed in a text formatted mode with pictures that looks great on the 7” screen. You can add tons of sources, and grab sources from your Google Reader account.
Tapatalk Pro – allows you to view many forums and bulletin boards formatted for much easier use and navigation on mobile devices. This looks great on the Nook Color and makes me wish you could view more content this way. There are stand alone Tapatalk viewers for AndroidTablets.net and xda-developers.com as well.
Evernote – Evernote is an online notes syncing service. Create an account online and you can add, view, and modify notes from any computer or mobile device. This is great for accessing and adding to lists or noting random ideas on the go. You can also save an access sound, picture and movie notes (though movie notes don't seem to be supported in the Android version quite yet.)
Root Explorer/ES File Explorer/Astro File Explorer – get a file explorer for your Nook Color to access all your files and folders. Each of these allow you to copy, paste, move and even edit system files (handle with care!).
AndroZip – extract zip, rar, etc files right on your device.
Advanced Task Killer Free – use this to kill apps still running in the background. Android tries to streamline this by keeping data from recently loading apps in memory, but this can slow down performance, especially for gaming. Use this app to kill out data from apps you are no longer using.
Opera Mobile – a very fast and clean web browser. I use this most of the time for my casual browsing. Don't use the similar Opera Mini, it uses speed techniques that over compress images and result in a low quality browsing experience.
Dolphin Browser HD – use this when you want to view a webpage very close to computer browser quality. This browser is full featured and offers a nice set of tools and options.
K-9 Mail – access multiple email accounts in one app. Supports a few different types of email accounts, I use it for my Gmail and Hotmail accounts.
SlideIT Keyboard – a replacement keyboard that allows you to slide your finger across the keyboard to quickly spell out words. It uses autofill spelling to make typing even faster. Takes a bit to get used to, but it's much faster that clicking one key at a time.
Some other cool and usefull apps that I use:
Google Maps w/Street View plugin
WiFi OnOff widget
Fancy Widget (there are also tons of other good weather/clock widgets out there)
LCD Density – icons and UI on rooted Nook Colors look terribly small. You can modify a couple of lines in a system file to change their sizes to your liking. Navigate to /system/ in the file explorer app of your choice, Root Explorer works best for me to do this. Mount the system folder as R/W (read write) and click hold “build.prop” and press “Open in Text Editor”. I recommend creating a backup copy of "build.prop" before editing it. Scroll down until you find the 2 lines that read
Replace these two lines with “ro.sf.lcd_density=250”. Save the file, set the system folder back to RO (read only) and reboot to check out the new sizes. You can replace the 250 with the density of your choice. For reference, the Galaxy tab uses a density of 240. I personally use a density of 200. 250 looks nice, but cuts off the time and notifications icon and the Nook Library UI becomes pretty unusable. 200 shows everything on the notification bar, the Nook Library UI is still usable but still has larger icons and UI for Android than the default 169.3333.
Icon Grid and Number of Screens (in Zeam)– Press Menu>Preferences>Workspace to add app screens, change the number of rows and columns of apps you can have per screen, along with a bunch of other options for customizing your launcher navigation.
Last edited by kelsoanim; 01-08-2011 at 07:05 PM.
01-08-2011 06:51 PM
You just beat me to my own similar thread. Thanks for listing so many more apps. I will check these out.
Nice tips kelsoanim, thanks and welcome the the AndroidTablets.net Nook section.
I'm not a fan of changing the lcd density. Increasing the density IMO, although will increase the icon size, lowers the quality of the text and icons.
This is an excellent list. I'm going to suggest a few alternatives, not because they're better, but because they might be a better fit in certain scenarios.
I'd add cool reader, just because it's a clean, customizable, straightforward and stable. Works great w epubs. I did this because the import process for Alkido was annoying, and it seemed as though it was forgetting my place unless I manually placed a bookmark (I could have been doing something wrong though).
Perfect Viewer - for side-loaded cbrs & cbz's. (It's really just a very nice photo viewer, which has very robust comic support). I chose this because "Comics", while amazing, doesn't support your local files. and "A Comic Viewer" fill the Nooc screen in landscape mode.
I'd follow the tricky directions for swapping out the youtube app for a HQ version that's posted in another forum (it involves a little trickery, but not much). Big improvement in stability and video quality.
ROM Grabber (I know it's a dark grey area, but it is in the official Market after all). If you're interested in emulation of old consoles, this will be all you need to get started (and soon realize it's really tough to play these on a fake gamepad)
Last edited by markiej; 01-08-2011 at 08:59 PM.
Where is this youtube thread that you are talking about?
Sent from my LogicPD Zoom2 using Android Tablet Forum App
I would guess REQ: Youtube.apk - xda-developers
Originally Posted by snookiecolor
Close: "HQ" YouTube on NC - xda-developers
Originally Posted by thel8elvis
SO I went through both threads. One is apparently the 'gingerbread' youtube app, and is installed with autonooter as far as I could determine. The other is from the EVO. But my youtube app (the default with autonooter) appears to play HQ videos ?? Is there a link with some screen shots or what is the differentiation between the 2 ?
Originally Posted by markiej
I can't say I'm following this issue with a lot of effort but on the app I'm using, I see a HQ in top right corner of the video.
so since the nook color is getting upgraded to 2.2 with a new and slightly different market place will a rooted color still gain you the full android market?