Online retailer Inc said on Monday that the recent price cut to its Kindle electronic reader has spurred sales of both the device and e-books.

Amazon last month cut the price of the Kindle to $189 from $259 to ward off competition from Apple Inc's iPad tablet and from Barnes & Noble Inc's Nook device.

In a statement, Amazon Chief Executive Jeff Bezos called the lower price a tipping point, and the company said it sold three times as many Kindle books in the first half of 2010 as in the first half of 2009.

While Amazon regularly touts the success of the Kindle, it has declined in the past to provide sales figures for the device or e-books, citing company policy. The company did not immediately return a request for details on sales figures.

Amazon said in a statement that in the past three months, it has sold 143 e-books on its Kindle for every 100 hardcover books sold on its website.

Earlier this month, Amazon also cut the price on its most expensive version of the Kindle electronic reader to $379 from $489.

Amazon shares were up $1.06 in after hours trading from a closing price on Monday on the Nasdaq Stock Market of $119.94.

(Reporting by Phil Wahba; Editing by Steve Orlofsky)