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iPhone 12 Pro vs iPhone 12 Pro Max: What should you buy? – Tom's Guide

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If you want one of Apple’s best iPhones, an iPhone 12 Pro vs iPhone 12 Pro Max comparison makes a lot of sense. Yes, they’re both very powerful and capable flagship phones, complete with Apple’s A14 Bionic processor and 5G, but they feel quite different when you actually put them in your hand.

As you’ll see in our iPhone 12 Pro review, the regular Pro’s 6.1-inch display makes it easy to use with one hand. And our iPhone 12 Pro Max review shows that going big with a 6.7-inch display has its benefits. But there’s more two these two iPhones than their sheet size difference.

The iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max also differ in terms of price, camera features and especially battery life. Here’s what  you need to know before you buy.

iPhone 12 Pro vs iPhone 12 Pro Max: Specs compared

iPhone 12 Pro iPhone 12 Pro Max
Price $999 $1,099
Display 6.1-inch OLED (2532 x 1170) 6.7-inch OLED (2778 x 1284)
Colors Silver, Graphite, Gold, Pacific Blue Silver, Graphite, Gold, Pacific Blue
CPU A14 A14
Storage 128GB, 256GB, 512GB 128GB, 256GB, 512GB
Rear camera 12MP wide (f/1.6), 12MP ultra-wide (f/2.4), 12MP telephoto (f/2.0) 12MP wide (f/1.6), 12MP ultra-wide (f/2.4), 12MP telephoto (f/2.2)
Zoom 2x optical/10x digital 2.5x optical12x digital
Front camera 12MP TrueDepth (f/2.2) 12MP TrueDepth (f/2.2)
5G sub-6Ghz, mmWave sub-6Ghz, mmWave
Battery life (hrs:mins) 9:06 10:53
Size 5.78 x 2.82 x 0.29 inches 6.33 x 3.07 x 0.29 inches
Weight 6.66 ounces 8.03 ounces

iPhone 12 Pro vs iPhone 12 Pro Max: Price

The iPhone 12 Pro starts at $999 for 128GB of storage. Upgrading to the 256GB model costs $1.099, and the 512GB version costs $1,299. 

Meanwhile, the iPhone 12 Pro Max starts at $1,099 for 128GB. The 256BG version costs $1,199 and the 512GB model is priced at a whopping $1,399 (or $100 more than the MacBook Pro).

If  you’re on the fence between the iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max, it’s good to know that you can get double the storage on the regular Pro for the same cost as the entry-level Pro Max.

iPhone 12 Pro vs iPhone 12 Pro Max: Design

(Image credit: Future)

If you want an iPhone that’s easier to use with one hand, the obvious choice is the iPhone 12 Pro. It features a 6.1-inch display in a fairly compact design that measures 5.78 x 2.82 x 0.29 inches and weighs 6.6 ounces. 

Meanwhile, the iPhone 12 Pro Max is a beast of a handset. It packs a 6.7-inch screen into a taller, wider and heavier chassis that comes in at 6.33 x 3.07 x 0.29 inches and 8.03 ounces. This is best for those who want an immersive screen and don’t mind using two hands.

iPhone 12 Pro vs iPhone 12 Pro Max

(Image credit: Future)

Both the iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro feature sleek flat edges and narrower borders, as well as a Ceramic Shield Display that’s designed to offer four times better drop performance than the iPhone 11 series. And the water resistance is great for both models, too, with an IP68 rating that allows them to be submerged in up to 6 meters of water for 30 minutes. 

I also like the matte glass back on both phones (which resists fingerprints) and the polished stainless steel band that runs along the outside of the handsets (which adds a bit of bling).

iPhone 12 Pro vs iPhone 12 Pro Max: Displays

iPhone 12 Pro vs iPhone 12 Pro Max

(Image credit: Tom’s Guide)

The OLED displays on the 6.1-inch iPhone 12 Pro and 6.7-inch iPhone 12 Pro Max are simply among the best you’ll find on any phone. These panels are bright, colorful and accurate, though the sheer size of the Pro Max may tempt you if you enjoy watching videos on the go. The Pro Max’s display is also ideal for reviewing documents.

iPhone 12 Pro vs iPhone 12 Pro Max

(Image credit: Future)

In our lab tests, the screens on the iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max were evenly matched in terms of color reproduction. The iPhone 12 Pro registered 115.6% of the sRGB color gamut and 81.9% of the more demanding DCI-P color space. By comparison, the iPhone 12 Pro Max hit 119.7% and 84.8%, respectively.

The iPhone 12 Pro proved a bit brighter, as its display averaged 742 nits based on our testing, while the iPhone 12 Pro Max reached 654 nits. Both screens are plenty bright enough to see in direct sunlight.

iPhone 12 Pro vs iPhone 12 Pro Max: Cameras

iPhone 12 Pro vs iPhone 12 Pro Max

(Image credit: Future)

The iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max both offer triple rear cameras along with Apple’s computational photography upgrades, including Night Mode portraits and Smart HDR 3 for better photos in tricky lighting. Plus, both phones record Dolby Vision video in 4K for stunningly colorful footage.

But there are some notable camera differences here. The iPhone 12 Pro Max benefits from a larger main wide camera sensor, which lets in more light, and the larger iPhone also offers a slightly more powerful zoom than the iPhone 12 Pro. 

Let’s start with the zoom on both phones, The telephoto lens on the iPhone 12 Pro has an optical zoom of 2x and a digital zoom of 10x. However, the iPhone 12 Pro Max delivers a 2.5x optical zoom and 12x digital zoom.

As you can see in this shot of harvest decorations, the iPhone 12 Pro Max gets you closer to your subject than the iPhone 12 Pro. It’s not a dramatic difference, but it’s still a welcome upgrade.

I also challenged both phones in low light with this close-up of a Christmas tree. The iPhone 12 Pro Max did a slightly better job capturing the gold ornament on the left, as you can see that it’s slightly sharper and more in focus. Same thing goes for the icicle in the center.

I took this next photo of a holiday sign in near darkness with Night mode engaged on both phones. While the iPhone 12 Pro shot is fairly bright, the iPhone 12 Pro Max image delivers much better texture and detail in the fabric on the dresser and in the flecks of paint on the sign. The words are in better focus, too. 

iPhone 12 Pro vs iPhone 12 Pro Max: Performance

iPhone 12 Pro vs iPhone 12 Pro Max

(Image credit: Tom’s Guide)

The iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max share the same specs, as they’re both powered by Apple’s 5nm A14 Bionic chip and 6GB of RAM. So it’s not a surprise that they offer comparable performance.

On Geekbench 5, which measures overall performance, the iPhone 12 Pro notched a single-core score of 1,585 and a multi-core score of 3,669. The iPhone 12 Pro Max scored a similar 1,603 on single core but hit an even higher 4,111 multi-core mark.

We also transcoded a 4K video to 1080p using the Adobe Premiere Rush app, and the iPhone 12 Pro took only 27 seconds. The iPhone 12 Pro Max was right behind at 28.5 seconds. 

Lastly, we ran the 3D Mark Wild Life graphics benchmark, and both phones excelled. The iPhone 12 Pro registered 51 frames per second on the Unlimited test and the iPhone 12 Pro Max reached a slightly higher 54 fps.

iPhone 12 Pro vs iPhone 12 Pro Max: Battery life 

iPhone 12 Pro vs iPhone 12 Pro Max

(Image credit: Future)

Other than their sheer size, battery life is the biggest difference between the iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max. The iPhone 12 Pro has a 2,815 mAh battery, compared to 3,687 mAh battery for the iPhone 12 Pro Max.

On on the Tom’s Guide battery test, which involves continuous web surfing over 5G at 150 nits of screen brightness, the iPhone 12 Pro lasted 9 hours and 6 minutes. The iPhone 12 Pro Max lasted a much longer 10:53.

The phones on our best phone battery life list all last over 11 hours, but keep in mind that many of those handsets are 4G-only. 5G uses up more power.

Both the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro Max ship without a charger. You’ll need to supply your own 20W ($19) charger if you want fast charging to 50% in 30 minutes. The magnetic MagSafe charger is one of the best wireless chargers yet because it’s so easy to use, but its 15W charging speed is slower than wired charging. 

iPhone 12 Pro vs iPhone 12 Pro Max: Bottom line

The iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max are both formidable flagship phones, but they’re great for different types of users. Apple’s Pro phones are very evenly matched on display quality, performance and photography, but the regular iPhone 12 Pro is best for those who want a compact device. 

I personally prefer the iPhone 12 Pro Max for its larger screen and nearly 2 extra hours of battery life. And while the photography differences are subtle, the Pro Max’s camera offered better results in Night Mode.

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Back in stock – this 50in 4K TV is just $150 for Black Friday, but it's going fast – TechRadar

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You can snag an Insignia 50-inch 4K smart TV for just $149.99 right now in the Best Buy Black Friday sale, but you’ll have to move fast – this deal has sold out before, and stock is likely to go fast.

We’ve seen some brilliant Black Friday TV deals already, but at such a low price, this is one of the most tempting – and Insignia is Best Buy’s own TV brand, so it’s a name that you can trust. 

Cheap 4K TV deal

Insignia 50-inch HD smart TV: $349.99 $149.99 at Best Buy
Save $200
– Another cheap Black Friday TV deal at Best Buy, this 50-inch Insignia is now on sale for $149.99. The smart TV comes equipped with Fire TV and Amazon Alexa fully built in – not bad value at all if you’re looking for a one-stop inexpensive TV that’s useful right out of the box.
View Deal

The specs aren’t on par with the very best 4K TVs you can buy, but they’re not at all shabby for such a ridiculously low price. You get a 3,840 x 2,160 screen, running at 60Hz. It uses the HDR 10 format, and although the refresh rate is only 60Hz, we wouldn’t expect to see anything higher.

Alexa integration is built into the remote, and the TV runs the Amazon Fire TV platform. There’s support for Apple TV+, Disney+, Hulu, Netflix, Prime Video, Sling TV and YouTube as well, so all the main bases are covered.

This deal has sold out before, so don’t hang around!

Not in the US? Scroll down for the best TV deals near you.

All the latest Black Friday deals

Best Black Friday deals: our top picks

Fire TV Stick Lite with Alexa Voice Remote: $29.99 $17.99 at Amazon
Save $12 –
The all-new Fire TV Stick Lite gets a first-time price cut in this early Amazon Black Friday deal. For just $17.99, the streaming player allows you to enjoy tens of thousands of channels, apps, and Alexa skills and features an Alexa voice remote.
View Deal

Insignia 6qt multi-function pressure cooker: $59.99 $29.99 at Best Buy
Save $30 –
At half price, this Insignia 6qt pressure cooker is sure to be a popular buy this Black Friday at Best Buy. Although a fairly common sale item, we don’t normally see price cuts quite this low, so we definitely think it’s a great pick-up if you’re looking for an appliance that’s really useful for easy to prepare meals.
View Deal

Apple AirPods Pro: $249 $169.99 at Amazon
Save $80 –
Amazon’s epic Black Friday deal has the AirPods Pro on sale for a record-low price of $169.99. The truly wireless earbuds feature active noise cancellation, and the wireless charging case delivers more than 24 hours of battery life. You’ll have to be fast though, this deal is flashing in and out of stock.
View Deal

Sony WH-1000XM4 headphones: $350 $278 at Best Buy
Save $72 – The Sony WH-1000XM4 over-ear headphones are some of the best noise-cancelling headphones on the market, and they’re seriously discounted with this Black Friday deal.
View Deal

Fitbit Versa 2 40mm smartwatch: $199.95 $129 at Walmart
Save $70 – Pick up a Fitbit Versa 2 smartwatch (40mm) at a $70 discount with this Black Friday deal. The Fitbit Versa 2 packs an AMOLED display, sleep, and fitness tracking, and up to 5 days of battery life at a compelling price.View Deal

Selling fast

iPad Air 4 – 64GB: $599 $569.99 at Amazon
Save $40 –
Stock is moving fast on these discounts on the iPad Air 4, and we’re only seeing this model left so you’ll need to act quickly to secure yours for less. This is an excellent discount on the latest iPad to hit the market – if you can grab it in time.
View Deal

Acer Chromebook 715: $549.99 $299 at Walmart
Save $270 –
this might just be the best Chromebook deal we’ll see on Black Friday, with almost 50% knocked off this impressively powerful Chromebook with an Intel Core i3 processor, 4GB RAM and 128GB storage.View Deal

Apple MacBook Pro 13-inch (M1, 2020): $1,299.99 $1,199.99 at B&H Photo
B&H Photo is also offering the the new MacBook Pro with M1 chip for $100 off if you don’t want to go with Amazon. Like with Amazon, this deal applies to both the 256GB and 512GB models, so you don’t have to compromise and still save some money. Normally not a saving worth talking about – but this is a hyper-new (and excellent) laptop.View Deal

Nintendo Switch Lite | carry case | 128GB memory card: $287.97 $239.97 at Best Buy
Save $50 –
Best Buy has this full bundle costing $287.97 when purchased separately, and it’s true you’re saving some cash with this $50 discount, however it’s worth noting that the 128GB memory card is available on sale elsewhere as well. It’s easier to grab this all in one place, but this isn’t as good a bundle offer as it appears at first glance.
View Deal

LG CX 55-inch OLED 4K TV: $1,999.99 $1,399.99 at Best Buy (save $600)
Limited Stock –
This 55-inch LG CX OLED TV deal brings the price of a gorgeous premium display all the way down to $1,399.99 right now. That’s a fantastic $600 saving on a TV with everything you need for a stunning viewing experience (and all the latest tech for next-gen consoles).
View Deal

Outside the US? We’ve rounded up the best 4K TV deals near you.

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Best Amazon Black Friday deals: Huge savings on DJI drones, Bose headphones, Fitbit, Echo and more – CNET

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This story is part of Holiday Gift Guide 2020, CNET’s gift picks with expert advice, reviews and recommendations for the latest tech gifts for you and your family.

Thanksgiving Day is but a mere memory and a swelling in our waistbands but Black Friday Deals Week is still well underway at Amazon. There are solid deals for everything from smart TVs, DJI drones, Apple Watches, Sonos speakers, Roku streamers, Fitbit wearables and more. Meanwhile, nearly every device in the Amazon stable — Echo smart speakers and displays, Fire tablets, Fire TV streamers, Kindles, Eero networking product and Ring doorbells and security cameras — are at or near their lowest prices ever. Keep reading to find our top picks from Amazon’s big sale, along with some pro tips for saving extra cash.

A few other pointers:

Pro tip No. 1: We also found a “secret” deal, one reserved for those who already have Alexa-capable devices: Just say, “Alexa, order an Amazon Smart Plug.” You’ll then have the option of purchasing the $25 plug for just $5. (Note that this deal isn’t working for some, though I just spoke with my Echo Show 5 and it’s still coming up. One theory: If you’ve already purchased this plug, you’re not eligible.) This was still working for us as of Thursday morning.

Pro tip No. 2:  Delivery dates are starting to slip to late December and even January on some products. Those may readjust to closer ranges, but be aware if you’re ordering anything that’s a must-have holiday gift.  

Pro tip No. 3: Virtually everything you buy from Amazon qualifies for 5% cash back when you pay with an Amazon Prime Rewards Visa card. But Amazon has raised that to 10% for a lot of items — even sale items, like the DJI Mavic Mini and iRobot Roomba i3 Plus (see below). That makes this a good time to sign up for that card if you don’t already have one.

Pro tip No. 4: Cash-back service TopCashback is currently offering up to 8% back on select Amazon purchases (mostly Amazon devices.) That would be in addition to the 5% to 10% back if you used Amazon’s Visa. Buy an Echo Show 8 for $65, for example, and you’d get 8% back here and 5% from the card. Real savings!

Finally, don’t forget: Amazon isn’t the only Black Friday game in town. Best Buy’s Black Friday started Nov. 22 and Walmart’s Black Friday sale started Nov. 25.

Amazon Black Friday deals available now

Chris Monroe/CNET

This jumbo-size Echo Show smart display measures, as the name implies, 8 inches diagonally, which makes it a great choice for watching cooking videos in the kitchen or making video calls. This sale price ties the lowest price we’ve ever seen for this model. Read our Echo Show 8 review.

César Salza/CNET

Not everyone wants to wear a smartwatch, and the Fitbit Charge 4 was called the best all-around fitness tracker of 2020 and received CNET’s Editors’ Choice Award — read our Fitbit Charge 4 review for details.

DJI

Finally! We’ve been hoping for a discount on the rarely discounted Mavic Mini, which is a simply fantastic personal drone. This isn’t the lowest price we’ve seen, but it’s definitely the best deal we’ve seen in a while. Same goes for the Fly More Combo, which you can grab for $449 (a $50 savings).

Yes, there’s now a Mavic Mini 2, but it starts at $449. Is it worth the extra $90? That’s your call, but the original is pretty sweet.

Note that the Mavic Mini qualifies for the aforementioned 10% cash back (instead of the usual 5%) when you pay with an Amazon Prime Rewards Visa card. That lowers your net cost to around $323.

Read our DJI Mavic Mini review.

Chris Monroe/CNET

“Wait for a sale.” That was the conclusion of CNET’s Echo Dot 2020 review, which praised the design and sound quality of the new model but rightly noted that Amazon’s mini smart speakers go on sale all the time. This, however, is actually the first time it’s happening; during Prime Day, Amazon discounted only the previous-gen Dot. 

Note that you can buy the Echo Dot with Clock for $39, also discounted for the first time, also $21 off. And the Echo Dot (4th Gen) Kids Edition is $49 (you save $41).

Read our Echo Dot 2020 review.

Lexy Savvides/CNET

This was already a bargain at $70, so $55 feels like outright theft. The Bip S improves on the already-great original Bip in several ways, with more sport modes and a higher-resolution display. Take note that Amazon currently shows an in-stock date of Dec. 12. If you want it sooner, look for a price-match at other stores (notably Best Buy).

Read our Amazfit Bip S review.

Tile

Tile usually makes you buy a multipack in order to get a decent discount. This is one of the best deals on record for a single tracker — which just happens to be one of my favorite products. Add it to your keychain, then use the Tile app when those keys go missing. Just as valuable, double-press the Tile button and it rings your phone (even when set to silent).

Instant Pot

This is the lowest price on record for this particular Pot, which holds six quarts of pretty much anything you want to cook and has a digital display. In addition to pressure cooking, it does sous vide, rice, yogurt and even cake.

Read more: The best Black Friday Instant Pot deals

Amazfit

Want something a little fancier than the Bip S? This ties the lowest price on record for Amazfit’s Apple Watch lookalike, which offers a lot of the same features and way better battery life (up to 14 days, according to Amazfit). It offers a vibrant 1.6-inch display (with an always-on option), built-in GPS and loads of fitness features. Plus, it works with both Android and iOS phones.

Amazon

This combo would ordinarily cost $75, but it’s on sale for $34. You get the all-new Echo Dot along with an Amazon Smart Plug, which you can use to control lights or appliances using Alexa. 

This isn’t the only Echo Dot (4th gen) bundle, either. For example, if you’re more a fan of TP-Link smart plugs, you can get the Echo Dot with TP-Link Smart Plug for $47, saving $26. 

Read our Amazon Echo Dot (2020) review.

iRobot

This is the largest discount on record for this new Roomba, which not only navigates your floors with smart sensors but also empties its own dust bin. (I’m pretty sure this is how Terminators got started.) And this is another item that qualifies for 10% cash back when you pay with your Amazon Prime Rewards Visa card. That effectively lops another $39 off the price.

Don’t have that Visa? You should get one, right now, because there’s a $100 Amazon gift card in it for you.

Sarah Tew/CNET

At $100 off, we haven’t seen the Sonos Move priced any cheaper. This is the first portable Bluetooth speaker from Sonos, but of course it also works with other Sonos speakers as part of a whole-home sound system using a Sonos wireless mesh network. You get an 11-hour battery life when it’s not sitting on its discreet charging pad. Read our Sonos Move review

Looking for something for your media room? Amazon is also discounting the $399 Sonos Beam soundbar (on sale for $299). Read our Sonos Beam review.

David Carnoy/CNET

Another Prime Day rerun, the Fire HD 10 tablet is an absolute steal at this price. Among the highlights: a big, sharp screen, expandable storage, a USB-C connector and a speed boost over the previous-gen model. It may be a while before we see the Fire HD 10 get discounted this much again.

Read our Fire HD 10 review.

Sarah Tew/CNET

Normally $30, the new-for-2020 Fire Stick Lite continues to see a solid discount ahead of Black Friday. This entry-level streamer delivers 1080p video with HDR support (but not 4K). The big missing apps are HBO Max and Peacock (for now), but the Alexa-powered voice remote is top-notch.

Read our Fire TV Stick Lite review.

Sarah Tew/CNET

Ebooks: awesome. Reading ebooks on a phone or tablet: less awesome. Good luck settling in with email, Twitter, TikTok and text messages clamoring for your attention. Plus, those screens aren’t too easy on the eyes. That’s why I’m a big believer in a dedicated e-reader. The entry-level Kindle is superb, with an integrated light and an improved design.

Read our Kindle 2019 review.

Sarah Tew/CNET

Available only in arctic white at this price, the Bose 700 was dubbed CNET’s pick for “top noise-canceling headphones” last year. It originally sold for $400 but has been hanging out at $379 more recently. At $299, this ties the lowest price on record.

Read our Bose 700 review.

Ian Knighton/CNET

In CNET’s hands-on tests, we found AncestryDNA to offer the best integration of DNA analysis and historical research. And now the service is on sale for more than half off.

Read our analysis of DNA test services.

Rick Broida/CNET

It just hit the market about a month ago at $50, so this is a pretty major price drop. The Band 5 packs a wealth of fitness features — heart rate and blood oxygen monitoring, music controls, even Alexa — into a wearable that can run up to 15 days on a charge. You can read my first take on the Amazfit Band 5 here. It’s not in stock until January but if you buy today then you’ll still get that low price.

Also worth noting: The Amazfit GTS smartwatch is on sale for $100, tying the lowest price ever. It’s an Apple Watch lookalike with way, way better battery life.

Amazon

Sure, cloud storage is great, but nothing beats having your data locally. Whether you need a MicroSD card for your Switch or a backup drive for your PC, this SanDisk sale is a great time to get all the terabytes you need at deep discounts.

Amazon

Amazon is following Target’s lead with a “Buy two, get one free” gaming sale. Fair warning, though: The good stuff is going fast.

Sarah Tew/CNET

The Versa 2 is a powerful hybrid smartwatch and fitness tracker that combines many of the things Fitbit does especially well — like excellent sleep tracking and detailed analytics about your workout habits — with smartphone notifications, Alexa integration and a wide selection of watch faces. We’ve even given this model our Editors’ Choice Award; read our Versa 2 review

While saving $50 is nothing to sneeze at, be aware that $130 still higher than $100, the lowest price ever for this fitness watch.

Want to score some great tips for Black Friday shopping? Look no further than this episode of the Cheapskate Show podcast:


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How to win Black Friday in 2020

1:46


CNET’s Cheapskate scours the web for great deals on tech products and much more. For the latest deals and updates, follow him on Facebook and Twitter. You can also sign up for deal texts delivered right to your phone. Find more great buys on the CNET Deals page and check out our CNET Coupons page for the latest Walmart discount codeseBay couponsSamsung promo codes and even more from hundreds of other online stores. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Answers live on our FAQ page.

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Best Black Friday deals available now: Apple Watch, AirPods, Bose headphones and more – CNET

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Deal

Savings

Price

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This story is part of Holiday Gift Guide 2020, CNET’s gift picks with expert advice, reviews and recommendations for the latest tech gifts for you and your family.

The Black Friday deals are in full flow with massive savings available from Best Buy, Target, Walmart, Amazon and more. There are discounts on Apple products, including AirPods and Apple Watch, as well as great buys from Roku, Bose and Amazon devices. You can check out some of the retailer-specific deals below.

Of the new deals that have arrived since Thanksgiving, many of the more exciting ones are already sold out or marked as curbside pickup only. That includes up to $70 off on iPads at Best Buy and a $150 50-inch Fire TV Edition Insignia TV at Best Buy. In better news, while the $169 AirPods Pro are sold out at Walmart, Amazon is matching them within a dollarThey’re currently listed as “temporarily” out of stock but it’s likely more will arrive over the coming days so keep your eye on it. 

We’ve been sifting through these and other sales to find the cream of the crop, which we’ve gathered below. Note that a few of the previously “expired” deals we kept at the bottom have resurfaced, which is why we recommend keeping this post bookmarked and checking it often for updates.

Best Black Friday deals available now

César Salza/CNET

CNET has dubbed the Fitbit Charge 4 the best all-around fitness tracker of 2020 for its low price, slim design, fashionable and functional straps and solid set of features, including GPS and sleep tracking. 

While it doesn’t have a full-color display like most smartwatches, the small design makes it comfortable to wear 24/7, and the battery life lasts about four days, or seven if you turn off GPS. If you’re looking to get a fitness tracker for someone who doesn’t already wear one, this is a great buy. Read our Fitbit Charge 4 review.

Another option: Kohl’s also has the Fitbit Charge for $100, but it comes with $30 in Kohl’s Cash to spend on a subsequent purchase. Assuming you can make use of that, it’s definitely the better deal.

Read more: All the Black Friday Fitbit and smartwatch deals

Chris Monroe/CNET

The Echo Show 8 is simply a larger version of the Echo Show 5, but that makes it a better candidate for the kitchen and other places you might prefer a bigger display. (It’s definitely preferable for video calls.) This matches the lowest price on record for this model.

Read our Echo Show 8 review.

Apple’s new flagship watch just got a solid discount ahead of Black Friday — the biggest so far, in fact. That price is good only for certain colors, however, and those have been changing day to day. Right now, for example, the Product Red and gold aluminum versions are $330; the other colors are $379. But it was the other way around yesterday, so it’s hard to be certain what you’ll find.

Read our Apple Watch Series 6 review.

AOC

Expand your desktop workspace with this super-slim 1080p monitor, which features VGA and HDMI inputs and comes with a three-year warranty. If that model sells out, there’s also an HP V24i for $90, though it has only a one-year warranty.

Tytan Tiles

Need a gift for a youngster? This kit consists of magnetic building blocks in a variety of shapes and sizes, so they’re great even for toddlers (but also fun for just about any age). At $20, this is around $10 less than similar kits you’ll see elsewhere.

Want more tiles? There’s an 80-piece set for $30 and a 120-piece set for $40. All three come with a drawstring bag and a little car with wheels.

Tile Mate Bluetooth tracker: $18

Save $7

Tile

Tile usually makes you buy a multipack in order to get a decent discount. This is one of the best deals on record for a single tracker — which just happens to be one of my favorite products. Add it to your keychain, then use the Tile app when those keys go missing. Just as valuable, double-press the Tile button and it rings your phone (even when set to silent).

Óscar Gutiérrez/CNET

Amazon, Walmart, Costco and other stores had the AirPods at $99 earlier this month — the lowest price on record — but for the moment that deal is gone. In its place: $110 AirPods on Amazon, also “for the moment.”

Read more: The best Black Friday AirPods deals

Will $99 AirPods be back? [Shakes Magic 8-Ball.] All signs point to yes.

Read our AirPods review.

Jackbox Games

Having a small, masked gathering this weekend? Jackbox party games are a blast. They’re on sale for up to 50% off on PC platforms like Steam and Fanatical. Just plug your laptop into the TV, then gather everyone around with their phones and tablets. I’m a huge fan of Quiplash, but there are lots of other great titles as well. Buy a Party Pack for maximum savings.

David Carnoy/CNET

Insanely popular with runners, Aftershokz headphones rarely go on sale. This price is the lowest I’ve seen for the Aeropex, the current flagship of the lineup. Why the fuss over these ‘phones? Their bone-conduction design lets you enjoy your tunes and podcasts while still hearing the sounds around you (like, say, oncoming traffic).

There’s an even cheaper option: the Aftershokz OpenMove for $80 (save $20), also the lowest price on record.

Roku

It may be two years old, but the Roku Premiere is still an excellent streamer. It has apps for pretty much every streaming service under the sun, and it slings them all at 4K. The latest version supports HDR, too. Whether there’s a “dumb” TV you’re looking to make smart or an old Roku that’s in need of replacing, it’s hard to beat this all-time-low price.

Note that the Roku Ultra 2020 is on sale for $70, with extra features like Bluetooth streaming and a remote with headphone jack. You can also get the Roku Streambar for $100.

Read our Roku Premiere review.

Chris Monroe/CNET

It’s the first-ever sale on Amazon’s new version of the mid-range Echo, which arrives with a new HomePod Mini-like orb shape (one that extends to the new Echo Dot as well — and that’s on sale for $29). We liked the improved sound quality and powerful bass in this version.

Read our Amazon Echo review.

DJI

Finally! We’ve been hoping for a reduction on the rarely discounted Mavic Mini, which is a simply fantastic personal drone. This isn’t the lowest price we’ve ever seen, but it’s definitely the best deal in a while. Same goes for the Fly More Combo, which you can grab for $449 (a $50 savings).

Yes, there’s now a Mavic Mini 2, but it starts at $449. Is it worth the extra $90? That’s your call, but the original is pretty sweet.

Note that if Amazon runs out, Best Buy is matching the price, and you can buy it direct from DJI as well (with a free canvas bag thrown in for good measure).

AeroGarden

As we roll into winter, I’m already missing my garden — especially the herbs I grow to make homemade chermoula (my best discovery of 2019).

LED-powered indoor gardens to the rescue! There are lots of these on the market right now, some pretty pricey. This is an unusually good deal on the AeroGarden Harvest Elite Slim, which supports up to six seed pods and comes with a starter heirloom-salad seed kit.

Sarah Tew/CNET

Normally $30, the new-for-2020 Fire Stick Lite continues to see a solid discount ahead of Black Friday. This entry-level streamer delivers 1080p video with HDR support (but not 4K). The big missing apps are HBO Max and Peacock (for now), but the Alexa-powered voice remote is top-notch.

Read more: The best Black Friday streamer deals

Read our Fire TV Stick Lite review.

Kojima Productions

Score a boxed copy of one of 2019’s biggest (and weirdest) games for the lowest price ever. We still don’t understand what “stranding” is (just sounds like a misspelled word), but at least you don’t have to pay $60 to experience it for yourself. Read our Death Stranding review.

Best Buy

TCL is best known for its Roku TVs, and we like the Roku smart TV system better than the Android TV version in this television, but for this price you can just buy a Roku Streaming Stick Plus, attach it to this TV and still come out ahead. Aside from its smarts we expect this 4-Series TV to perform “good enough,” just like the Roku equivalent

This TV was previously $30 less, and may get there again. So although $120 is a solid discount, you might want to wait and see if the better deal returns.

Read more: The best Black Friday TV deals

Best Buy

A pressure cooker is one of the most versatile tools you can add to your kitchen, and at this price it’s one of the most affordable. Insignia’s model appears nearly identical to the equivalent Instant Pot, offering 10 preset modes for things like rice, meat, soup and even cake. It features a delayed-start option, an automatic keep-warm function and a dishwasher-safe nonstick pot.

Amazon

This is only the third time this kit has been priced this low. It’s an insanely popular item, as it’s great not only for checking your ancestry, but also for identifying potentially serious health issues. Makes a great gift, too.

Lenovo’s premium two-in-one, the Yoga C940, boasts a sturdy and sleek all-metal design and a touch display that can rotate 360 degrees into tablet mode. It includes an active pen and can also instantly wake from sleep, one of the phone-like features it received courtesy of Intel’s Project Athena.

This configuration features a 14-inch display with a 4K resolution powered by a 10th-gen Core i7 CPU, 16GB of RAM and 512GB SSD with 32GB of superfast Optane memory. A similarly configured Yoga C40 on Lenovo’s site works out to $1,650, so this deal is even better than it looks. And it already looked good.

Read more: The best Black Friday laptop deals

Read our Lenovo Yoga C940 review.

Tyler Lizenby/CNET

With its 7-inch touchscreen, the Nest Hub offers more viewable area than the 5.5-inch Echo Show 5 (which is currently on sale for $45). But the real question is whether you want Google Assistant running the smart show in your house instead of Alexa. If the answer is yes, this is an outstanding deal — especially considering the $20 in movie credit that comes with it. Splurge at Vudu on rentals or purchases, all of which you can watch on the Nest Hub or anywhere Vudu streams.

Read our Google Nest Hub review.

Crock-Pot

One of several cookers on sale at Kohl’s, this one seems a particularly great deal on an item every kitchen needs. Score the beloved Crock-Pot for just $25.50 with promo code THANKS. This model has lid clamps for easier travel.

Take note that shipping isn’t free, however, unless your cart hits $75. But you can pick it up in-store and bypass shipping altogether.

Sarah Tew/CNET

This was briefly selling for just $100 a short while ago, but even at $140 it’s a deal worth considering. 

As a general rule, we don’t like Amazon’s Fire TV as much as Roku because Fire TV menus push Amazon content too much and are more confusing in general. But this model does have a voice remote with Alexa, and the price is mighty compelling for a screen of this size.

Read more: The best Black Friday TV deals

Instant Pot

These days, a multicooker is an essential kitchen tool, like a toaster oven or microwave. This Instant Pot Viva can get you in the multicooker business for half price: $49 buys you a nine-in-one gadget that works as a pressure cooker, slow cooker, rice cooker, yogurt maker, sous vide, cake maker and more. It has a 6-quart capacity and comes with 15 preset programs for recipes that include soups, beans, rice, ribs and eggs.

Read more: The best Black Friday Instant Pot deals

Bose

If ever there was a time to tune out the world, it’s now. (Because, you know, election, pandemic, murder hornets…) Sure, there are newer over-the-ear noise-canceling cans from Sony and even Bose, but this perennial favorite was great when it came out and it’s still great now — especially at this price, which rivals the lowest we’ve seen. Original list price: $350.

Read our Bose QuietComfort 35 II review.

Early Black Friday deals: Sold out or expired (for now)

Angela Lang/CNET

AirPods Pro are all about the noise cancellation: These in-ear buds block outside noise better than just about any other product on the market. They’re also great for calls and offer an excellent transparency mode. Like to work out? The AirPods Pro earbuds are sweat-resistant. Standard AirPods are not. Woot has been selling these for $190 in recent days, and then Walmart stomped in by offering them for $169, their lowest price ever. That offer quickly went out of stock, but Amazon is currently offering a (near) price match at $170. And here’s a pro tip: Use your Amazon Prime Rewards Visa card to get 5% back on this purchase. Don’t have that card? If you’re a Prime subscriber, grab it and score a $100 Amazon gift card.

Read more: The best Black Friday AirPods deals

Read our AirPods Pro review.

Vanessa Hand Orellana/CNET

New for 2020, the Apple Watch SE is the middle child of the Apple Watch lineup. It’s got the same basic design as the Series 6, but lacks that model’s always-on display, ECG functionality and oxygen saturation measurements.

The 40mm and 44mm models run $279 and $309 at the Apple Store — and have been marked as low as $229 and $259 during previous early Black Friday sales. If you see higher prices, be patient: Those deals will likely return.

Read our Apple Watch SE review.

Eufy

You don’t have to spend hundreds to add some automation to your house cleaning. The Eufy RoboVac 25C can be controlled via a mobile app or by voice with Alexa and Google Home. It’s smart enough to differentiate between floors and carpet and can avoid stairs automatically. 

Lenovo

Here’s a solid deal on a spacious laptop, one that features a 14-inch screen, 4GB of RAM, 32GB of onboard storage and eight-hour battery life. My only reservation is with the 1,366×768-pixel screen, which is a little on the low-res side. But for students doing homework, Zoom meetings and the like, it’s fine.

What you need to know about Black Friday 2020

Black Friday 2020 is shaping up to be a very different kind of shopping experience than any holiday shopping weekend in recent memory. With ongoing inventory issues due to the extended global pandemic — not to mention the need for retailers to maintain a safe environment for customers and employees — it’s likely that there will be no throngs of expectant customers lining up for hours ahead of massive doorbuster sales.

In fact, a number of stores will be closed on Thanksgiving this year, ending a long-standing tradition of kicking off Black Friday sales before the turkey has had a chance to cool. These retailers have not yet announced plans for Friday, Nov. 27, but we’ll update this article as we learn more about their holiday hours. 

In addition, all of the retailers listed below require customers to wear face coverings. Unless their policies change between now and Thanksgiving, it’s reasonable to assume that face coverings will be required for Black Friday sales as well. 

Bookmark this post and check back often for more early and upcoming Black Friday deals!

Read more: 4 things you need to know about Black Friday 2020


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