Every once in awhile, I get the urge to buy a refurbished Nook Simple Touch for the purpose of trying my hand at rooting the device. There are a lot of great tutorials online that help users turn a NST into an E Ink tablet, but I never wanted to risk the warranties of my store-bought Nooks. Barnes & Noble has officially maintained an eBay store since October 1, 2012. They use it to sell overstocked books, toys, movies, and other merchandise, including refurbished Nook devices. If a customer buys a Nook and has technical issues, or just wants to return it, the device is shipped back to a repair and processing center that attempts to correct the issue, and the customer is sent another device. Troubleshooting and testing take place, and if the Nook can be repaired, or if there was nothing wrong with it in the first place, B&N resells it as a “Certified Pre-Owned Nook” at a discount. It’s a roll of the dice, but you could get a brand new, perfectly flawless Nook. Even ones that had issues before the refurb are fully repaired and re-certified. The price on NSTs usually drops from $99 brand new to $79 for a refurbished one (probably to match the price of the $79 Kindle). Refurbished Nook Colors and Nook Tablets have also been sold on their eBay store and from barnesandnoble.com.
Recently, prices for refurbished units have been plunging on B&N’s eBay store. A 16GB Nook Tablet, which normally costs $249, has been offered for $199 and $170 refurbished. Today, when I went to check the price of a refurbished Nook Simple Touch, I was surprised by the $59 price tag. Then I saw that the Nook Tablet 16GB is also on sale for $133.99! This is the lowest it has ever been. On checking the B&N website, I also noticed that they are now offering the 16GB Nook Tablet for $174, brand new, if you are a B&N Rewards member who has renewed their membership before August. Prices are dropping all over the place after the Kindle Fire HD and Paperwhite launch.
The NST and Nook Tablet might be a little outdated when compared to the Google Nexus 7 or Amazon’s new eReader and tablet offerings, but they are still solid devices with a history of avid and enthusiastic users. Both can be easily rooted and turned into open Android tablets, making them quite versatile. If you have ever wanted to give Nook a try, now is the time to buy. The competition between B&N and Amazon always causes a plunge in prices. Take advantage of it.