iRobot’s Roomba 694 is back down to its all-time low of $179, plus the rest of the week’s best tech deals.
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Somehow, it’s Friday again (I’m pretty sure someone added an extra Monday to this week) and Friday means it’s time for our weekly roundup of the best tech deals we could find. Apple discounts were the most abundant, with sales on the second-gen Apple Pencil, Apple Watch 8 and Apple Watch Ultra, iPad mini, and the MagSafe power bank. All have dropped down to or near their all-time lows. If you’re an Android user and considering the latest flagship from Samsung, you may want to check out Amazon’s gift card bundle with Galaxy S23 smartphones. Anyone who could use a little help keeping their floors clean might want to take a look at iRobot’s Roomba 694. It’s our pick for the most affordable ways to enter the robo-vac market and it back down to its lowest price. Here are the best tech deals from this week that you can still get today.
iRobot Roomba 694
We’ve tested quite a few robot vacuums over the years and our current favorite budget pick is iRobot’s Roomba 694. This week, it dropped back to its all-time low price of $179, which is $95 off and a great price for a solidly performing vac that will do a good job of keeping your floors clean without much effort on your part. It’s part of a wider sale on Roombas both at Amazon and on iRobot’s site, with discounts of up to 35 percent. Also part of the sale is the best premium robot vacuum we’ve tested, the self-emptying Roomba s9+. Usually $999, the sale knocks $200 off, making it a little more affordable. We also tried and liked the Roomba Combo j7+ which combines mop and vacuum functions. The sale brings that one down to $849, which isn’t cheap, but considerably better than its $1,099 list price.
Samsung S23 Ultra and Amazon gift card
Amazon is offering a $100 gift card for those who buy an unlocked Galaxy S23, S23+ or S23 Ultra on their site. It’s not the $140 discount we saw last week, but $100 might make a difference to someone who’s still on the fence about picking up one of Samsung’s latest flagships. We gave the S23 Ultra a review score of 89 and liked the bright display, powerful performance from the custom Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chip that makes everything smooth and speedy. The massive 200MP sensor camera Samsung added was the big news upon the phone’s debut, though it takes some tinkering to get the most out of those extra pixels. The battery lasted an impressive 19 hours and 26 minutes and it’s got a great build. One caveat we mention is the high price tag. But perhaps Amazon’s gift card offer will ease up on that drawback a little.
Eargo 7 Micro Hearing Aid
If you’re looking for FDA-approved, self-fitting hearing aids that are pretty close to invisible, you may like this deal on the new Eargo 7 hearing aid. They’re on sale for $360 off the usual price, bringing the $2,950 devices down to $2,590. When we wrote about Eargo last year, we said the brand acts “more like a technology company instead of a stuffy medical-device provider” and that’s partly due to its annual release cycle — like you get with Samsung or Apple — that continually improves upon the technology with each new version of a product. This week, our editor James Trew checked out the latest release from Eargo and called the Eargo 7 the best model to date.
Apart from a few set-up snags within the app and the fact that the case deep sleeps when it needs a charge (even if the hearing aids are full), the experience with the devices was smooth sailing. These are CIC or in-canal hearing aids, which tend to be fairly unobvious when you wear them and they’re even rated to handle sweat from workouts or minor splashes in the shower. Trew likes how they adequately amplify sound but don’t emphasize sharp noises like keys. The battery lasts all day and the customer service is pretty great — important for a medical device that you buy direct from a company, instead of going through an audiologist.
Apple M2 Mac mini
This week, Apple’s new M2 Mac mini dropped to its lowest price since its debut earlier this year with the entry level models for $50 off the list price. B&H Photo is applying the discount to the 256GB mini M2 and the 512GB mini M2, both with 8GB of RAM, bringing the tiny but mighty computers down to $549 and $749, respectively. If you’d rather pick them up from Amazon, both the 256GB model and the larger 512GB configuration are $50 off there too. The Mac minis with the M2 Pro chip aren’t seeing the same discount, though Amazon is listing those $10 below Apple’s suggested price.
The new Mac mini packs Apple’s new M2 chip, which you’ll also find in iPad Pros and the latest MacBook Pros. Both discounted models have eight CPU cores, 10 graphics cores, 8GB of RAM and either 256GB or 512GB of storage. As for ports, you get two Thunderbolt 4 UCB-C ports, an HDMI port with 4K output at 240Hz and 8K at 60Hz, two USB-A ports, a 3.5mm headphone jack and a gigabit Ethernet port.
Apple iPad Mini
The iPad mini is super portable, and now it’s a little more affordable with a 20 percent discount on the 64GB model. That brings it down to $400 instead of its usual $499 and matches the lowest price the diminutive slab has ever gone for. If you want the higher capacity 256GB model, that’s getting a 15 percent discount, bringing it down to $550, which is also $99 off. The deals apply to the gray, starlight and purple colors, though it looks like pink is only available on the 64GB configuration. We gave the mini an 89 in our review, noting that it received a significant redesign over its predecessors, adding iPad Air-style features like a Liquid Retina all-screen design, USB-C charging, a Touch-ID button and support for the new Apple Pencil.
Apple Watch Series 8
We think the Apple Watch Series 8 is the best overall smartwatch and right now you can snag the 41mm Product Red version for just $329, which is $70 off the usual price. If you don’t mind the color red, you’re set. If the hue’s not your speed, keep in mind that the bands are swappable, though they’re not particularly cheap and the case will remain red. It’s still a great watch with excellent health and fitness features, including EKG tests and crash detection. It also has solid GPS tracking and great integration with iPhone apps. Yes, it’s only for those who carry iPhones. If you’re an Android user, we recommend Samsung’s Galaxy Watch 5. The Bluetooth 40mm model is still on sale from last week, down to $220 instead of its usual $280, which is an all-time low for the wearable.
Apple Watch Ultra
Apple’s burliest smartwatch dropped to $749 a couple weeks ago, and now the Apple Watch Ultra is $50 off once again at Amazon. We gave it an 85 on our review, praising the bright screen, extra long, three-day battery life and the impressive array of health tracking, fitness and GPS functions. Even with a $50 discount, it’s not a cheap watch, and probably best suited to die-hard adventurers and athletes.
Apple Pencil (2nd generation)
The second generation Apple Pencil had returned to the all-time low it hit during the shopping holidays at the end of last year. Usually $129, a 31 percent discount brings the stylus down to just $89. It’s one of our favorite accessories for iPads and comes with a number of improvements over the first generation, including wireless charging that magnetically attaches to your compatible iPad. The second-gen Pencil only works with newer versions of iPad Air, iPad mini, or iPad Pro — the standard iPad still supports the first-gen stylus. If that’s the iPad you have, you can grab the first-gen Pencil from Amazon for a $20 discount today.
Apple MagSafe Battery Pack
Apple’s MagSafe Battery Pack is currently 20 percent off at Amazon, bringing the charge-anywhere power bank down to $79. That’s not the lowest it’s ever gone, but it’s only $8 higher that its all-time low of $71. The power bank is small and compact, firmly attaching to the back of your iPhone (model 12 and newer) as long as your case isn’t too thick. In our tests, it delivered a 43 percent charge to an iPhone 14 Plus — you’ll get a smaller or larger charge depending on the model and size of your phone. While it didn’t win as the best MagSafe charger, it is well designed and remarkably compact. Our top pick for a MagSafe battery pack, Spigen’s ArcHybrid goes for $60, but right now Amazon is offering a coupon for 35 percent off. Just check the box on the product page to apply the discount.
If you want to wirelessly charge your iPhone at your desk or bedside table, you may want the wired, Apple-made MagSafe charger. It’s on sale for $31 or 21 percent off.
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Published at Fri, 03 Mar 2023 18:45:32 +0000
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