Barnes & Noble is set to start including a free Nook Simple Touch e-reader with the purchase of its higher-end 9-inch Nook HD+ tablet starting March 24th. Reports in February indicated that B&N may be looking to scale down its Nook hardware efforts, and deals like this often coincide with a dumping of inventory. Since launching in 2011, the Simple Touch e-readers haven't taken off in the way B&N would have hoped to compete with Amazon's Kindle e-readers. Similarly, its multimedia-focused tablets haven't been a huge hit either.
The deal will run for just one week, but should give a few buyers that were on the fence about a nook tablet to hop over and make the purchase. At the same time, it could help B&N get through some unwanted inventory. The Nook HD+ currently sells for $269 for 16GB of storage and $299 for 32GB, and the Simple Touch regularly retails for $79.