Barnes & Noble recently released its Nook Simple Touch equipped with the Glowlight, which is the first eReader that facilitates reading under low light situation without the assistance of any external source of light.
Recently the tear down of the device was done at iFixit to mainly analyze the internal technology employed for the Glowlight.
The LEDs placed above the display of the device are the main source of light and to this extent it is quite simple.
However, the mechanism though which these LEDs distribute light across the screen is quite complicated. Diffraction grading has been employed in the development of the glass that is at the top of the eInk panel.
This means that there are tiny slits or grooves in the glass that afford the dispersion of light over the entire display.
Barnes & Noble could’ve made this possible though simple linear diffraction grating but the company went for an even sophisticated mechanism, whereby variable diffraction grating was employed to make the distribution of light perfectly even over the entire screen.
This required considerable amount of engineering skills since the eReader is available at a price of only $139 and to manage the entire mechanism under this price is certainly an achievement.
The mechanism for Glowlight is the main difference between this and the previous versions of Barnes & Noble eReaders.
Other than that, there is very little difference between the internal hardware of the devices. Another structural difference is that the version with Glowlight has an internal frame built with magnesium, while the previous models were built with aluminum.
If you have fairly technical background and are interested in performing your own teardown of the device, you just need to take care of adhesive and fused display assembly which, according to iFixit, can be the main points of worry.
Other than that, it is not very complex and the process has been given a reparability score of 7/10 by the people who did this at iFixit.