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Amazon’s fourth-gen Echo and Anker battery packs are on sale ahead of Prime Day

Amazon’s fourth-gen Echo and Anker battery packs are on sale ahead of Prime Day


How to get free AirPods, discounted accessories, and more

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The fourth-gen Echo smart speaker on a wooden desk
Photo by Dan Seifert / The Verge

Just ahead of Prime Day, Apple has begun its annual back-to-school promotion, including free AirPods when you purchase an eligible Mac or iPad. It’s a similar deal to last year’s offer, where the standard AirPods are offered by default, but at checkout you can upgrade to the model that includes the wireless charging case for $40, or the AirPods Pro for an extra $90.

As for what devices are eligible for the free AirPods on Apple’s education site, it starts with the $499 iPad Air (latest gen with USB-C), moving up to the new M1-touting iPad Pro. On the macOS side of things, Apple is offering AirPods with the Mac Mini, MacBook Air, MacBook Pro (13 or the Intel-based 16-inch model), the new iMac (as well as the previous-gen 21.5- or 27-inch models), and finally, the Mac Pro.

Photo by James Bareham / The Verge

There aren’t an abundance of reputable tech accessory brands on Amazon, with RavPower being among the latest to be delisted for fraudulent reviews. But Anker products are still available, and some of them are even discounted today. In this assortment, there are portable power banks, power banks that are also wall adapters, a wireless charger, Lightning cable bundles, and more.

Microsoft’s Surface Duo dual-screen Android-powered device
Photo by Amelia Holowaty Krales / The Verge

Moving on to other deals, the unlocked version of Microsoft’s Surface Duo is still seeing fantastic price drops at Amazon. The folding phone with 256GB of storage (and compatibility with Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile) costs $732, down from $1,500. It costs about $50 less for the model with 128GB of storage. Frustratingly, the Surface Duo is still on Android 10 software, though Microsoft promised three years of OS and security updates after launch. Whether you believe they’ll follow through or not, it could still be a good option for you if you want to multitask to your heart’s content or do a bit of handheld xCloud gaming on it.


Microsoft’s first Android phone was its ambitious foldable Surface Duo. It features two OLED displays, and its high-end design fits in with the greater Surface family of products.

I alluded to it earlier, but Prime Day 2021 is coming up fast, happening Monday, June 21st just after Father’s Day. We’re busy behind the scenes getting things ready, but we put together a list of the best early deals that you can get right now — but only if you have a Prime membership. As you might expect, these deals focus mostly on Amazon’s own products, but definitely keep an eye out for new deals first thing next week, which will feature price cuts for way more brands. Here’s a tease of the best early deals:

An Echo smart speaker on a mantlepiece with a skeleton couple.

Amazon’s most recent full-size Echo from 2020 has a spherical build and better sound quality than previous iterations, with a broader sound than the smaller Echo Dots. Read our review.


This 2021 model of Insignia’s Fire TV Edition 4K TV has slimmer bezels, DTS Virtual-X audio, and continued support for Dolby Vision HDR. It comes with streaming software built-in.


Amazon’s second-gen Echo Buds improve upon the originals with a more comfortable design, improved ANC, and a more natural ambient sound mode. They support hands-free Alexa commands as well.