When the Nook Color was first announced and sold, one of the first discoveries programmers (both amateur and professional) made was that the restrained Android system it was running could easily be altered and unleashed. It is not difficult to do and only requires a microSD card and a little know-how. The Nook Color has a reasonably substantial processor that can handle most Android tablet functions and you can also awaken the Bluetooth capabilities, which the Nook Color has but is inactive. The summary is this…for $169 you can have a fully-functioning Android tablet.
That price is much more attractive than many of the seven-inch tablets out there and a Nook Color is powerful enough to do most of the same functions. I have watched Netflix on mine, hooked it to a wireless keyboard and typed articles on it and also played Spectral Souls, which is a substantial RPG from Google Play.
Downside of Nook Color Rooting
You need to carefully consider rooting your Nook Color before you do it because it can cause problems. I am speaking from experience. I actually “bricked” a Nook Color trying to do this (for those that don’t know, that means ruining the processor and turning the device into an expensive paperweight). Also, if you choose to root the Nook Color itself rather than simply running it off an SD card, then you can nullify the warranty. On the other hand, if you choose to run the Android system off an SD card, it will not damage the Nook Color but runs pretty slow. That’s a choice you’ll have to make.
Rooting the SD Way
It takes about an hour and a microSD card to root your Nook Color. There are many operating systems you can put on it, but for ease of use, I would stick with either Froyo or Gingerbread. Honeycomb is available but running it off an SD card is pretty choppy. The larger the SD card, the more memory you’ll have on the tablet. I would choose either an 8GB or 16GB SD card. If you don’t want to go through all the steps, you can purchase one of these cards on eBay for a hefty sum.
Best of all, if you simply load the image on the SD card, all you have to do to switch between the factory Nook Color function and the Android platform is shutting off the Nook Color and removing the card. Since it boots directly from the card, everything on your Android tablet is installed on that little piece of plastic and metal. Isn’t technology wonderful?