Motivating the move is Google, which recently released its 7-inch Nexus 7 tablet amidst much fanfare. Priced at $199, early reviews were overwhelmingly positive. Popular tech hardware blog Engadget called it the “best $200 tablet you can buy,” clearly putting down its main competition from Amazon and Barnes & Noble.
Barnes & Noble’s Nook Color and Nook Tablet computers have been on the market for a few years now. The Color features 8GB storage and is primarily an e-reader that allows users to share their book collections with friends. Its price has now been cut from $169 to just $149.
The Nook Tablet came out last year and received fairly positive reviews. Available in 8GB and 16GB versions, it received some great press when it was revealed that the Nook was far easier to read in poor lighting than the Amazon Kindle Fire. The Nook screen even fared better than Apple’s comparatively pricey iPad.
Unfortunately for Barnes & Noble, it hasn’t fared particularly well against Google and its Nexus 7. One major problem for the Nook Tablet: its screen resolution is just 1024 x 600, vastly inferior when stacked up against the Nexus 7′s 1200 x 800 display.
In response, Barnes & Noble is not only dropping the price of the Color, but also the Nook Tablet. The price of the 16GB version of the Tablet drops from $249 to $199, while the 8GB edition goes from $199 to $179.
Of course, there’s no guarantee the price drop will help the situation. After all, price drops tend to indicate that a product is in trouble, scaring away consumers rather than luring them in.
It also doesn’t help that Amazon is expected to unveil a new version of its Kindle Fire in the near future.