The Barnes & Noble Inc. Nook Tablet display stands at a store in New York, U.S., on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2011. More than two dozen devices including Barnes & Noble Inc.'s Nook Tablet are selling at a 30 to 80 percent discount to the Apple Inc. iPad, which starts at $499. Photographer: Paul Taggart/Bloomberg (Paul Taggart/BLOOMBERG)

Barnes & Noble announced Tuesday that it has introduced a new, 8GB version of its Nook tablet — for $199. The price puts the new tablet in direct competition with the Kindle Fire from Amazon, which sells for the same price and has the same amount of memory.

Barnes & Noble launched the Nook Tablet late last year with 16GB of memory and a $249 price tag. The device has its advantages over the Kindle Fire — a better screen for reading, for example — but hasn’t taken off in the same way, likely because of its higher price point.

The new model of the Nook goes on sale on Barnes and Noble’s Web site today.

The company has also lowered the price of its Nook Color, its device that serves as a step between an e-ink reader and a full-blown tablet. The Nook Color will now sell for $169. The e-reader gives users access to Barnes and Noble’s curated app store, movies from Netflix and a good screen for reading glossy magazines, art books and comic books.

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