Amazon Prime Day officially kicks off on July 11th, and while we’re expecting to see steep discounts on Amazon’s line of inexpensive Fire tablets, it’s safe to say that Amazon’s latest slates still can’t match an iPad when it comes to design and performance. Fortunately, the 2021 iPad is currently on sale at Amazon in the 64GB / Wi-Fi configuration for $249.99 ($79 off) at checkout — a price we haven’t seen since March of last year.
On the whole, Apple’s ninth-gen slate remains the best budget iPad you can buy, even with the introduction of the 10th-gen model last year. The entry-level tablet packs in a sharp 10.2-inch screen, a 12MP front camera, and Apple’s A13 Bionic chip, which is still surprisingly fast despite having been first released in 2019. Yes, the design is a bit outdated compared to the latest models, and there are some other notable drawbacks — the 2021 model doesn’t work with the second-gen Apple Pencil and some of Apple’s newer accessories, for instance — but it’s a great entertainment device that’s suitable for streaming, games, and a variety of other use cases. And, let’s be honest, who doesn’t love a good old-fashioned headphone jack?
Apple’s entry-level iPad from 2021 has a 10.2-inch screen, an A13 Bionic chip, and a 12MP front camera that supports Apple’s Center Stage feature. It’s also compatible with the first-gen Apple Pencil and the Smart Keyboard and is the only iPad that still has a 3.5mm headphone jack.
It seems like every vacuum manufacturer under the sun is churning out new models as of late, with Dyson, Roborock, and Ecovacs all introducing new robovacs within the last month or so. Some models are launching north of $1,300; however, if all you need is a budget-friendly robot vacuum that rarely gets stuck and offers mopping capabilities, Yeedi’s Vac 2 Pro is currently matching its all-time low of $199.99 ($50 off) at Walmart.
Yeedi, a lesser-known player in the space, has been making strides in recent years with a versatile lineup that is far cheaper than anything the competition offers. The Vac 2 Pro is a prime example of this, one that pairs high-end features with a more approachable price tag. The sleek vac features an impressive 3000Pa of suction power and an oscillating mopping system that scrubs instead of wiping, along with the ability to detect obstacles more than an inch tall, ensuring a pair of shoes doesn’t stop it in its tracks. This 3D obstacle avoidance tech isn’t as advanced as the AI-powered tech found in pricier robovacs like iRobot’s Roomba j7, but hey, those are the kind of tradeoffs you make to keep costs down.
A few additional midweek savings
- Amazon’s Kindle Paperwhite Kids is down to just $89.99 ($70 off) on Amazon right now for Prime members, which marks the e-reader’s best price to date. The kid-friendly model is identical to the model we reviewed in 2021 — meaning it features USB-C, marathon battery life, and a crisp, 6.8-inch display — only with a case, an extended two-year warranty, and zero ads.
- There’s been a lot of hullabaloo about the new 15-inch MacBook Air, but if you’re not someone who needs Apple's latest chipset or those extra two inches, the 13-inch MacBook Air from 2020 is still on sale at Amazon and Best Buy for $799.99 ($200 off). The 13-inch laptop remains a great “budget” buy thanks to its terrific battery life and M1 chip, which, despite its age, still offers enough power and performance for most users. Read our review.
- The Fujifilm Instax Mini Link 2 has dropped to just shy of $90 at Amazon, Best Buy, and Target, matching its best price to date. The compact photo printer uses the same film as Fujifilm’s popular line of Instax cameras and connects to your smartphone via Bluetooth, letting you churn out credit card-size prints in just a matter of minutes. Read our guide to the best instant photo printers.
- Samsung’s low-profile Galaxy Buds 2 are on sale at Amazon for $89.99 ($60 off), which nearly matches their all-time low of $84 or so. The entry-level wireless earbuds — which offer ANC and wireless charging — are a good default for Samsung Galaxy owners who don’t want to shell out for the pricier Buds 2 Pro, namely because they’re comfortable, reliable, and sound plenty good for a pair of earbuds that cost less than $100. Read our review.
- If you’re in need of a relatively affordable 4K monitor, Dell’s 27-inch S2722QC is on sale at Amazon and Best Buy right now for $299.99 ($100 off). It’s geared more toward productivity than gaming, and as such, it’s restricted to a 60Hz refresh rate and two HDMI 2.0 ports. Still, it offers a nice balance of features for the price, with terrific image quality and a 65W USB-C port that allows you to charge your laptop while using it.