“• Twice as much storage space: 16 gigabytes compared to eight. Don’t get too excited about this, though. What Barnes & Noble has left out of its marketing material is that only 1 gigabyte is available for content that isn’t bought from Barnes & Noble. Since books don’t take up much space and Barnes & Noble doesn’t sell movies, much of the 16 gigabytes is likely to be wasted.

“• A slot for memory cards. This is the cure for the lack of memory for non-Barnes & Noble content. You can add another 16 gigabytes of memory by buying a $20 card.

“• The ability to load books from third-party stores like Google Books. On the Kindle, you can only read books from Amazon…

“• Children’s books with built-in narration (some Kindle apps have this).

“• A microphone. This doesn’t have a lot of uses, but it does allow you to record your own narration. …

“For the most part, the Nook Tablet justifies the higher price tag compared to the Kindle. Of course, anyone with money to spend should also be looking at the iPad 2, which starts at $499 and does all of what these smaller tablets do—plus a whole lot more.”

A comparison of the major features of Barnes & Noble Inc.’s Nook Tablet computer and Amazon.com Inc.’s Kindle Fire:

Price: The Nook Tablet costs $249; the Kindle Fire, costs $199.

Connectivity: Both tablets connect to the internet only through Wi-Fi.

Screen size: Both tablets have displays that measure 7 inches diagonally. That’s about three times the size of an iPhone screen and half the size of an iPad screen.