Barnes & Noble: Nook Biz Up 38% In Q4, New Nook Tablet 8G

Barnes & Noble’s Nook business — which includes devices, digital content and accessories – increased 38% during Q4 2011 to $542 million from Q4 2010.

The company released its fourth quarter earnings today and revealed that unit sales for the various Nook devices increased 64% during the third quarter as compared to the same period in 2010. Digital content sales, which includes eBooks, digital magazines and apps, increased 85% on a comparable basis.

Overall, Barnes & Noble reported that total sales increased 5% as compared to the prior year, from $2.3 billion to $2.4 billion. Retail sales increased 2% from $1.46 billion to $1.49 billion.

Today, the company also announced the new Nook Tablet 8G for $199. The new tablet has less memory and is cheaper than the $249 16GB Nook Tablet, but has the same functionality. This will give the book retailer a better edge when competing with the Kindle Fire. B&N also dropped the price of the Nook Color to $169.