If your looking for ways to cut costs, refurbished gadgets can be a great way to stretch your tech budget. Refurbished units are just units that have been returned to the manufacturer and reconditioned so that they work properly: think of it like buying a certified used car.
Our sponsors AT&T have developed a program for refurbished devices tehy’re calling #RefurbFriday: each Friday they highlight device at a super cheap discount. While there are always great deals available on AT&T’s refurb microsite, this week for one day only they’re selling the Galaxy Note 2 for only $9.99 with a 2 year agreement. The Galaxy Note 2 usually retails for $299.99 with a contract, so that’s a pretty amazing deal!
If you’re looking for more refurbished phone deals, follow @ATTPremier on Twitter and look for their #RefurbFriday hashtag. But if you want the deal you have to act fast, because RefurbFriday deals are only good on Friday.
For some reason, it seems like half the Black Friday deals we’ve seen out there are for TVs. Maybe because compared to laptops or smartphones, it’s hard for TV manufacturers to compete on features, and instead they compete on price. That means many stores will have a good deal on a TV this Black Friday, so if a different deal is what you’re really after, make that store your priority and plan to try to pick up a TV at that location.
Of course, there’s more to a home theater than just TVs, especially in the age of TV-via-the-Internet, so we’re bringing you some of our favorites for the entire experience too. If you have any questions about any home theater gadgets, feel free to ask away in the comments!
TVs (from Smallest to Largest):
32” Apex HDTV: $147 from Target
This LCD TV normally retails for closer to $250. It’s not a smart (aka web-enabled) unit, and it’s not the fanciest TV, with a 720p display and 60HZ refresh rate, but it can take HDMI and S Video input and is a solid deal at under $150.
40″ Toshiba HDTV: $179.99 from Best Buy This is a budget model, and there’s a reason this is one of the leading deals from Best Buy: normally these TVs retail at over $400. It’s also an LCD HDTV, with 1080p resolution, and HDMI inputs. Again, this isn’t a top of the line unit, with a refresh rate of only 60HZ, but it is affordable budget TV.
50″ Sony Smart HDTV: $899 from Sony Retail Stores Here, it’s all about the smart TV plus size. This web-enabled lets you stream movies, photos, music and videos straight to your TV from the internet, in 1080p HD. Normally retails for $1299.
65” VIZIO LED Smart HDTV: $998 from Sam’s Club This is an 65″ LED TV for under $1,000, which is impressive, as is the refresh rate of 120HZ. This TV is also web-enabled for access to all your streaming media, and features all the top-of-the-line features you’d expect. Normally retails for around $1400.
Other Key Home Theater Components: Blu-ray Players:
Take your pick, there’s an LG for $38 at Sam’s Club or a Toshiba for $39 at Best Buy. The Toshiba is “web ready,” meaning that if you want to spend an additional $30 – $50.
Roku Box: $59.99 The Roku is a great alternative to a web-enabled TV or Blu-ray. Roku allows you to stream content, like Netflix, HuluPlus, Amazon, games, and live sports. We recommend the Roku 2 XD, which lets you stream in 1080p HD. Normally $79.99, it will be available at Roku.com for $59.99
Harman Kardon 500W 5.1 Home Theater Receiver: $250 at Best Buy This stereo receiver is $250 off its normal retail price of $500. It features 5 channels with 100 watts per channel, plus six HDMI inputs, Dolby TrueHD, and more.
Thinking about buying a tablet? Make sure you check out AT&T first! They’re offering $100 off any tablet with a 2 year agreement. Yeah you read that right: any tablet. And that includes brand-new devices, like the Galaxy Tab 2 10.1 which launched Friday.
The Galaxy Tab 2 10.1 was initially announced a few months ago in NYC, but we had no idea about pricing or release date. Now we know that the contract price is $499.99, minus AT&T’s $100 deal, of course. The Tab 2 is a 10″ device running Android 4 that weighs all of 1.28 pounds, and features 16GB of integrated storage and a 32GB-capable MicroSD card slot. If you’d like to compare that to some of the other tablets out there on the market right now, check out our handy tablet comparison guide.
If you’re looking for your tablet to work seamlessly with your PC, you can also use the $100 off on any of AT&T’s Windows 8 tablets. Both the Asus VivoTab RT and the Samsung ATIV Smart PC are being offered exclusively from AT&T. The Asus VivoTab is a 10.1″ 4G LTE tablet with 32GB of storage. It will also come standard with Microsoft Office Home and Student 2013 RT Preview Edition. But you’ll have to wait: the Asus VivoTab RT won’t be coming till November 16th.
If you’re looking for a Windows 8 tablet now, consider the ATIV. The Samsung ATIV is actually more like a hybrid tablet/computer. The screen is a larger 11.6,” and the device comes with 64GB of storage (unheard of for a tablet) and an Intel Atom Processor. But at 11″ the device is still highly portable, and features a clamshell cover that can be detached if you want to use the machine more like a tablet. It’s a good compromise between portability and productivity that would make a great option for a business traveler, and AT&T’s $100 off deal makes it a good time to buy.
Want to check out the full range of tablets AT&T has on sale? Go to http://www.att.com/100offtablets and take a look: you can get $100 off any tablet AT&T has to offer!