For many retailers, Black Friday is already here. That means that for the next few weeks, consumers can expect to be inundated with deals — some good, and some, well, horrific.
But how can you tell which items will be cheaper on Black Friday and which will be cheaper closer to Christmas? That's where we come into the picture. Based on our knowledge of deals — and our battle scars from Black Fridays past — we've made a checklist of which tech items you should buy in November and which items you should wait on. This way you can avoid any buyer's remorse and maximize your savings like a true bargain hunter.
Credit: Apple; Hasbro; Microsoft
Buy it. Since its debut, the Nintendo Switch has been one of the most elusive gaming consoles. Unfortunately, its high demand has given retailers little incentive to discount it. That's why to date, we haven't seen its price drop from its $299 MSRP. This holiday, you may see a free game or added controller thrown in for good measure, but don't expect any extraordinary dollar-off discounts on Nintendo's console. That means if you do spot a Switch bundle or deal that appeals to you — go ahead and buy it knowing that you'll suffer no buyer's remorse.
Buy it. The iPhone X is already the most-talked-about smartphone this season, but don't expect to see any major discounts on Apple's latest kit. In fact, some retailers are increasing the price of Apple's über phone. Your chances of spotting deals on the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus are much higher, especially since we've already seen both phones on sale for $100 off. As for the iPhone X, you'll be lucky if you find it in stock. So any deal or bundle you come across will be a rare find and one you shouldn't hesitate to take advantage of.
Buy it. The Nintendo Switch isn't the only console on gamers' minds this month. On Nov. 7, Microsoft is launching its new Xbox One X, which the company has dubbed as "the world's most powerful console." The $499 console can play 4K Blu-rays, 4K content and select games in HDR. But don't expect to see many deals on the Redmond, Washington, company's new system. While the orginal Xbox One S may dip well below $199 — Dell briefly had it for $189 — we don't expect to see any significant deals on the new console. So once again, we'd recommend jumping on any bundles or modest discounts you see.
Buy it. Apple has the unique distinction of being on our "buy" list twice. Although it was initially slated to release in December, Apple has since pushed back the release of its HomePod till early 2018. The HomePod is Apple's take on the smart speaker. The $349 Siri-enabled speaker will be covered in mesh fabric and it will house seven tweeters and a single up-firing 4-inch woofer. Unfortunately, we don't expect to see any deals on this device.
Buy it. From its new Fire TV to its 2nd-generation Echo, Amazon has a wide selection of gadgets to discount this holiday season. Last holiday, Amazon held two sales on its Alexa devices — one during Black Friday week and the other just days before Christmas. The Black Friday sale offered slightly better discounts and we expect Amazon to offer a similar sale again this year. So when it comes to Amazon devices, you're better off making your purchases in November than December.
Wait and buy later. They're on every parent's shopping list, but when it comes to toys, you'll save the most money if you wait until December to make your purchases. Traditionally, that's when retailers offer their most aggressive toy deals on everything from Lego sets to Star Wars figures. Amazon is renowned for its steep toy discounts in the days leading up to Christmas. Their sales can take from 50 percent to 75 percent off popular toys. Just remember to give your purchase a few days to arrive because even Prime is prone to delays and setbacks during the holiday rush.
Wait and buy later. Although we've seen a healthy amount of gift card deals in the days leading up to Black Friday, today's deals don't compare to the quantity and quality of gift card deals we expect to see in December. From the iTunes Store to Xbox Live, you can expect to see gift card deals for most of your favorite stores. with prices ranging from $7 for a $10 gift card to $80 for a $100 gift card.
Credit: Sony; Microsoft; Apple