Low-cost colour tablets look set to be a popular gift this Xmas. Amazon’s colour Kindle Fire and Kindle Fire HD models are available from 25th October, and now Barnes & Noble has announced that its new Nook HD will be available in November.

Like Amazon’s new Kindles, the Nook HD runs Android and is available in two sizes — the Nook HD with 7” screen and Nook HD+ with 9” screen.

Both Nook HD models have higher resolution colour touch-screens than their Kindle counterparts, which should make them crisper and clearer — something that’s particularly important when reading ebooks.

Although both Nook HD models run Google Android 4 and are compatible with existing apps, Barnes & Noble has customised its appearance to suit its book selling business — and hopefully make it easier to use.

Both Nook HD models will be available from 1st November and pre-orders will available in the UK from October — orders can’t be placed on the US site.

Prices are a little higher than the equivalent Kindle Fire models — the 7” Nook HD costs £159 for the 8GB model and £189 for 16GB; the 9” Nook HD+ costs £229 for the 16GB model and £269 for 32GB.