11.6-inch Samsung Chromebook 2 for $230

Samsung had the first blockbuster Chromebook with the late 2012 11.6-inch Chromebook. Since then, the market has gone a lot more competitive, and Samsung replaced the original model with a 11.6″ and a 13.3″. Now, market pressure and time, have discounted the second generation 11.6″ model, the XE500C12-K01US, you can get it for $230 with free shipping at Amazon.com and other places.

Strategically though, with more touchscreen Chromebooks coming out, one has to trade-off the convenience of a touchscreen vs the lower price of a non-TS model. Especially now that the affordable Windows 2-in-1s are directly competing on price with the Chromies.

Nokia Lumia 520 GoPhone (AT&T) for $30 [limit 3] {WinPhone}

If you want to experiment with Windows Phone 8.1 and don’t want to sign a contract or pay a lot of money for a handset, or go the used route, there is a great deal at the moment at Amazon.com. For just $30, you can get the new condition no-contract Nokia Lumia 520 GoPhone (AT&T) with a limit of three per customer. You are not obligated to start a prepaid plan with AT&T. You can just use it as a Wifi-only device.

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10.1-inch 32GB HP Pavilion X2 Detachable for $200 [W8]

As of a 3/11/14 recheck, this sale is back on!

Windows goes on the attack once again, bringing fire and blood to the Chromebooks which perhaps rested a bit on their laurels.Right now, for just $200, you can get the 10.1-inch 32GB HP Pavilion X2 Detachable hybrid from Amazon.com. Or you can get the 64GB version for about $25 more. Limit three per customer.

It’s a tablet, it’s a laptop, and it is SSD powered, so no painful hard disk spinning. And it has a touchscreen. It is powered by the recent Intel Atom Z3736F Processor, with 2GB RAM, Intel HD graphics, 1280×800 resolution, and a battery life estimate of over 11.5 hours. You also get a one year subscription to Office 365.

For general purpose lightweight computer use, I am now starting to tilt towards Windows 8 2-in-1s over Chromebooks. Thanks to the Desktop persona, you can install most of your favorite Windows apps, and you can install as many browsers as you want. And that’s before you take it to the next level with Firefox Profiles.

Obviously, don’t expect these to run Photoshop or AutoCAD or heavy duty productivity software. But for email, browsers, social media, music, videos, they can be pretty, pretty, pretty good as Larry David likes to say. You still have the various frustrations of Windows, it still takes a million pointless clicks just to install a new version of an existing app, you still have to reboot every time Windows Update sneezes, and such.

[DEAD] Google Play Gifts: Lord of the Rings movie and Linkin Park album

This limited time promotion but Google Play appears to have weekly promotions, some of which are free, others very close to free, so stay tuned…
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Chase adds Grocery Stores to 5% Quarterly Rewards for 2015

Great news for credit card cashback fans! Chase has published a sneak preview of their 2015 5% rotating quarterly categories and there’s an exciting change! The first quarter is Grocery Stores! This is huge since we all need food! It has the usual quarterly limit of $1500, and some stores are not eligible (eg Walmart, Target, and other warehouse stores) as usual. But still, this is a great cashback opportunity. The maxout on this is $75 in Cashback Rewards for the first quarter (5% of $1500). Also included in Q1 are Starbucks and Movie Theatres. This increases the chances of more people maxing out the first quarter.


The second quarter is headlined by Restaurants, while the third is gas stations. Both have “and more” so more options may be added. The last quarter, as usual, it is holiday shopping time, headlined by Amazon.com. For each quarter, the activation (sign-up/opt-in) for promotion is the 15th of the previous month. So for Q1, you can sign up starting December 15, for Q2 you can sign up March 15, and so forth. Another consumer-friendly thing that Chases does (I know, shocking!), you can sign up deep into the quarter and still qualify.

Tip: you can also buy gift cards at the various participating stores, so you can pre-buy your future purchases. For example, if you are a regular Starbucksaholic, you can load up your gift card for future purchases. Or buy other store gift cards through the grocery stores. Or gift certificates at your favorite restaurants or gas stations. And so forth.

[DEAD] Buy $125+ in select Gift Cards, get $20 off next Smart and Final purchase

This specific offer expired, but gift card promotions are recurring at Smart and Final every few weeks or so, so stay tuned…
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[DEAD] $5 Kohls Gift Card Bonus between 6pm Thanksgiving and 1pm Black Friday

This limited time promotion expired…
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[DEAD] Buy $100+ in select Gift Cards, get $15 coupon at Smart and Final

This particular offer expired, however, the gift card promotions at Smart and Final return every few weeks with different amounts and bonuses…
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[DEAD] Nov 23-26: $5 off $25 AMC or Regal Gift Cards

This limited time promotion expired…
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[DEAD] Samsung Galaxy Alpha G850M (32GB, unlocked) for $560

This limited time offer expired…
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Refurbished 32GB HTC One M7 (unlocked) for $250 [updated]

A great time for refurbished smartphone flagships of previous years! One of the eBay featured deals at the moment is this seller-refurbished 32GB HTC One M7 Android smartphone, factory unlocked, offered for $250 (was $200) with free shipping, with a choice of four different colors, and a limit of five per customer. The seller is “qualitycellz” (99.1%). This is very tempting but keep in mind, the One M7 does not have a microSD (but the M8 and One Max do). Still, for $200 for an unlocked GSM phone without any contractual obligations! Do also note that this is seller-refurbished, not manufacturer!

[DEAD] Nov 20-22: 25% Rewards at Staples

This limited time promotion expired…
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[DEAD] November 20-24: Earn 3 Bonus Stars at Starbucks with sandwich or panini

This limited time promotion expired…
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Refurbished LG G2 GSM unlocked smartphone for $260 (was $230) [updated]

The current generation top tier smartphones typically retain their premium, but if you want to get some really good deals while still getting a solid smartphone (for example, the previous year’s flagship), then eBay is one of your friends. Case in point, one of the featured eBay Deals has the manufacturer refurbished LG G2 (32GB, GSM, factory unlocked) going for just $260 (was $230) with free shipping. This has a 5.2-inch display. It is available in black only (the white sold out). The eBay seller is “qualitycellz” (99.1%) with a limit of five of these per customer.

11.6″ Samsung Chromebook flattens to $200

If you are not sold on the second generation Samsung Chromebooks 2, and you are not tempted by the various other Chromebooks by other manufacturers, the first blockbuster Chromebook, the Samsung Chromebook XE303C12-A01US has now flattened/settled in price to $200 at various online retailers, including NewEgg and Best Buy and Office Depot/Max and GameStop among others.