Posting from Las Vegas: Barnes & Noble this morning rolled out a new promotion that brings the price of its Nook e-readers and tablets more in line with those of Amazon.com’s Kindle lineup, but the lower prices will require the additional purchase of a New York Times or People magazine digital subscription.
The company says the Nook Tablet, normally $249, will drop to $199 for the next two months for people who simultaneously buy a 1-year Nook subscription to People magazine at a rate of $9.99/month.
The Nook Simple Touch e-reader, normally $99, will be free with a $19.99/month year-long Nook subscription to the New York Times. Nook Color, normally $199, will drop to $99 under the same New York Times subscription deal.
The catch, of course, is that those subscriptions add up to more than the normal cost of the devices. The offer will appeal primarily to people who would have been planning to subscribe to People or the New York Times anyway. An early termination fee of $99 will apply to people who cancel their NYT subscriptions during the first year, with a $50 fee for canceling People during the first year.
Amazon’s Kindle Fire tablet retails for $199. Amazon uses an advertising-supported model to offer lower-priced versions of its Kindle e-readers, with the lowest-price Kindle selling for $79.
The announcements come on the eve of the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, where device makers are jockeying for attention for their latest products. The New York Times will promote the Nook discount at its booth here.