For a couple of years now, people have suggested that if ereaders got cheap enough, they could be used by newspapers as promotional swag—sign up for a subscription and get an ereader for free. Newspapers haven’t warmed to this idea yet, but who’s to say an ereader company can’t reverse the concept?
That’s what Barnes & Noble is doing for the next month or so with the following three offers:
- Subscribe to NYT for one year at $19.99/mo = Free Nook Touch (regularly $99)
- Subscribe to NYT for one year at $19.99/mo = $100 off a Nook Color (regularly $199)
- Subscribe to People magazine for one year at $9.99/mo = $50 off a Nook Tablet (regularly $249)
Is this a good deal? It really depends on what you were planning to do in this space before you read about the offer, because the final cost for either subscription is not trivial—$240 for the Times, and $120 for People. Basically, the only way you’ll save any money here is if you were already planning on one of those subscriptions and you were saving up to buy a Nook device. In other words, it’s a really bad idea to use this offer to “finance” a new Nook purchase.