I’m a crazy gadget freak. My prime consideration when buying gifts is electricity: If it buzzes, lights up, or moves I’m all over it!
Holiday shopping in the USA traditionally kicks off with “Black Friday”, the day after Thanksgiving. Although not quite the bonanza it’s rumored to be, many retailers do offer compelling Black Friday deals. Here are my favorites for 2010:
- The Amazon Kindle is the best holiday gift this year in my opinion. It’s fairly affordable (as electronics go) and desirable to a wide range of adults, both male and female. Seriously, I can’t imagine anyone wouldn’t want one!
- Want a tablet? Even after almost a year, Apple’s tablet is the hands-down best, and the iPad is the most-desirable electronic gift for adults (according to Retrevo) and number 3 for kids (according to Duracell).
- Hit all the TJ Maxx and Marshalls stores in your area looking for a $399 iPad.
- Best Buy is offering $50 off the Verizon Galaxy Tab, but it’s still no match for the mighty iPad.
- Staples’ $399 ViewSonic Android tablet isn’t even marked down but it’s fairly cool anyway. It’s not yet available on Amazon, but Staples claims to have it in stock.
- Skip the Augen 7″ Android tablet at Kmart, even at $139. The reviews are, how shall we put it, “unfavorable“. Same goes for the Sylvania tablet at Toys R Us. In fact, don’t buy any of the multitude of off-brand Android tablets you’ll find for under $200 – they’re all junk! This makes Sears’ offer of a Velocity Micro tablet amusing at $250!
- Want an iPod Touch?
- Apparently, the “iTouch” is the number-2 most-requested gift for kids, with 13% asking for one this Christmas! The iPhone 4 is number one…
- Best Buy is offering the 8 GB iPod Touch with a $30 gift card, but Toys R Us beats them with a $50 gift card on every iPod Touch! Radio Shack’s $20 offer pales in comparison, though their $15 offer on the iPod Shuffle isn’t bad.
- Need portable storage?
- Best Buy has a 1 TB Western Digital My Passport Essential SE portable hard drive for $89. That’s $60 off MSRP and $40 less than Amazon.
- Or you can pick up a 1 TB Seagate FreeAgent Go portable hard drive for just $89 at Staples. It’s not a GoFlex, but that’s still really cheap.
- Walmart (ugh) will have a Western Digital My Passport Essential 500 GB Portable Hard Drive for just $39, too. That’s $30 less than Amazon’s regular price.
- Cheap Macintosh computers are hard to come by.
- Best Buy will also have $50 iTunes gift cards for $40 – buy a pile!
- Need a PC laptop? Read What To Look For In A Laptop (Holiday 2010 Edition) first!
- Best Buy has a nicely-equipped 15″ HP Core i3 laptop for $499.
- Staples also have a solid HP 17″ laptop with a Core i3 CPU at $499 after rebate.
- I can’t recommend any of the junky laptops Walmart and others has on sale.
- Looking for an awesome printer? B&H Photo has the cool HP ENVY 100 on sale for $189! Otherwise, the killer HP Photosmart eStation C510a with the Zeen tablet is $360 at Amazon.
- I’m going to order a discounted copy of Office 2011 for Mac OS X from Amazon.com: Home & Student is just $79 for a single license or $109 for a 3-pack! Note that neither includes Outlook if that’s what you’re after. That’s Office for Mac Home and Business 2011, and it’s $182 for a 1-pack.
- How about a camera!
- Toys R Us has some Lego sets at 30% off: My favorite is the 6754 Family Home. I’d also grab the $10 Lego alarm clock or $65 Star Wars biofeedback Force Trainer ’cause it’s freaky.
- Finally, head to JC Penney and get a home popcorn cart for $99 after rebate!
What Not To Buy
Some things aren’t worth what you think they are. Do not buy these, even as gifts.
- E-book readers and tablets are “ecosystem devices”. Why even consider an off-brand device that lacks books or apps? And considering the aggressive pricing from Apple and Amazon, you’re not really saving much money.
- Do not buy charging mats. They require special add-ons to electronic devices. Although the Duracell and Powermat devices are being widely-pushed, geeks don’t want them!
- Do not buy off-brand GPS devices, either. You’ll wish you opted for a Garmin nÃ¼vi 1300 or Magellan RoadMate 1470.
- Same goes for still and video cameras – get a Canon, Sony, Nikon, or Flip.
I’ll be updating this post as I spot more interesting deals. Happy consumer-ing!
Note: Some of these links include affiliate codes that help pay for this blog. For example, buying an Amazon Kindle with this link sends $11 my way! But many of these links just go to other stores or the products themselves. I’m not trying to get rich with this list, I just picked the things I like and Amazon happens to have the best prices more often than not!
Image credit: “Look K-mart…” by Cosmic Kitty