Ah. April Fools’ Day. The dreaded day when publishers like The Verge have to second guess every news story or potential tip that lands in our Gmail inbox. Thankfully, when it comes to deals, things are often exactly what they appear to be. Take today’s discount on Apple’s sixth-gen iPad Mini, which is currently matching its all-time low of $399.99 ($100 off) at Amazon in the 64GB configuration with Wi-Fi.
My colleague Dan Seifert recently heralded Apple’s newest iPad Mini as one of the best tablets for reading, but it’s suitable for a lot more than just burning through whatever the latest BookTok craze might be (spoiler: it’s still Colleen Hoover). The revamped tablet is essentially a pint-sized version of the iPad Air but with an 8.3-inch screen that’s easier to hold than the 10.9-inch panel on the latter. What’s more, the 2021 Mini boasts a USB-C port, a speedy A15 Bionic chip, and compatibility with the second-gen Apple Pencil — something that can’t be said of the cheapest model in Apple’s tablet lineup.
2021 iPad Mini (Wi-Fi)
Apple’s revamped iPad Mini ditches the home button and opts for a larger edge-to-edge display. It also comes outfitted with a faster processor, support for USB-C, and a top-mounted power button that moonlights as a Touch ID sensor.
The last couple of weeks or so has been ripe with earbud deals, offering solid discounts on everything from Google’s Pixel A-Series (now $79) to Jabra’s ultra-reliable Elite 3 (now just under $60). That said, we think the current $82 discount on Sony’s WF-1000XM4, which knocks them back down to just $198 at Amazon and Best Buy, is the standout. The XM4 feature wireless charging, noise cancellation that’s nearly on par with that of Bose, and warm sound that revels in the mid-low frequencies. Plus, now that Sony has rolled out multipoint support to the XM4 alongside a range of other wireless earbuds, our biggest gripe with Sony’s flagship model has been officially addressed.
Sony’s WF-1000XM4 have top-notch noise cancellation and lively, enjoyable sound quality. With wireless charging and bonus features like LDAC support, they’re a great overall pick.
Unsurprisingly, the Google Pixel 6A continues to be one of the best values in the world of smartphones, one you can currently get in an unlocked configuration for $299 ($150 off) — an all-time low — at Amazon, Target, and Best Buy. What’s more, the latter retailer is offering an additional $50 off when you activate the device on one of the three major carriers, specifically AT&T, T-Mobile, or Verizon.
We’ve covered the Pixel 6A a lot, namely because Google keeps discounting it so much! The Android phone offers a lot of bang for the buck given it features a great (albeit, slightly dated) camera system and the same Google Tensor processor found in Google’s last-gen flagship, the Pixel 6. The phone’s 6.1-inch display is also a nice, friendly size that feels just right to many of us. Sure, the Pixel 7A is likely to make its debut at Google I/O next month, but the 6A is still a worthwhile purchase at its current promo price.
Google’s Pixel 6A comes with a relatively small 6.1-inch OLED screen but is an excellent performer with a good camera and battery life.
Sonos’ latest smart speaker, the Era 100, might be the new default for some, but there are plenty of cheaper alternatives for those looking to get into the smart home game without dropping a cool $249. Amazon’s fourth-gen Echo is a prime example, and is currently available at Amazon, Best Buy, and Target on sale for $64.99 ($25 off).
The sound is not going to be as rich or as detailed as it might be with a higher-end speaker, but the latest Echo sounds remarkably robust, with a little bit of stereo separation and an admirable amount of bass for its size. It also packs all the Alexa-based smarts we’ve come to associate with Echo devices, along with the ability to serve as an Eero mesh Wi-Fi extender thanks to a recent OTA update that landed in the fall.
The latest Echo has a spherical build and better sound quality than the previous iteration.
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A handful of other weekend highlights
- Spring is here, and if you’re looking for some low-tech gadgets to enjoy the warmer weather we assume is coming, the Ranger Essential Bundle 2.0 is on sale for $195 ($230 off) direct from Solo Stove. The 15-inch fire pit is one of the more portable models Solo Stove offers, yet it still comes with a carrying case and a removable ashtray that makes cleanup a breeze.
- Eero’s top-tier Pro 6E mesh Wi-Fi routers are 25 percent off at Amazon. You can get a single router right now for $186.99 ($63 off), a two-pack for $299.99 ($100 off), or a three-pack for $411.99 ($138 off). The routers support Wi-Fi 6E and speeds of up to 1.3Gbps with a 6GHz band, allowing for less network congestion on devices that support it. Read our review.
- You can currently get a $100 Apple gift card from Eneba for $84.99 ($15 off) when you use offer code 100Tunes at checkout. The digital gift cards, which are advertised as iTunes gift cards, can be used on just about anything Apple, from hardware to apps to subscriptions.
- The 8BitDo Ultimate Wired Controller for Xbox and PC, which is an excellent control for the price, is selling for just $24.99 ($20 off) at Woot. Its USB cable may not be detachable, but it’s a quality controller with two rear buttons and software customization.
- If you’re looking for a wired gaming headset with decent sound quality and a comfortable design, Sony’s InZone H3 is going for around $78 instead of $99.99 at both Amazon and Best Buy, which matches the best price we’ve seen on the low-end gaming headset.
- Garmin’s inReach Mini is currently on sale at Amazon for $269.99 ($80 off), its second-best price to date. The rugged, two-way satellite communicator is great to bring along if you’re an avid backpack or hiker, namely because it allows you to send and receive text messages from loved ones — or anyone, really — when you’re out of cellphone range.
Update April 1st, 11:33AM ET: Added Amazon’s deal for the first-gen inReach Mini.