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The second-gen Apple Pencil drops to $89, plus the rest of the week’s best tech deals


It’s Friday, which means it’s time for another roundup of good deals on recommended tech. Among this week’s highlights, the second-gen Apple Pencil is back down to an all-time low of $89, while the latest Echo Dot is within $5 of the best price we’ve tracked at $30. If you need to upgrade the storage of an Xbox Series X or S, Seagate’s 1TB storage expansion card is at least a little more palatable at $150, while Samsung’s 256GB Evo Select is a good value at $18 for Switch owners in need of a microSD card. Beyond that, we’re also seeing deals on MasterClass and Apple Music subscriptions, Anker wireless headphones, Samsung’s S95B OLED TV, Shark robot vacuums and Amazon’s Kindle Scribe. Here are the best tech deals from this week that you can still get today.

Apple Pencil (2nd Gen)

Photo by Valentina Palladino / Engadget

Apple Pencil (2nd Gen)

This ties the all-time low for the latest Apple Pencil, which we consider the best iPad stylus you can buy.

The second-gen Apple Pencil is back on sale for $89, matching the lowest price we’ve tracked. That’s $40 below Apple’s list price and about $15 below the iPad stylus’ average street price on Amazon in recent months. We recommend the latest Pencil in our guide to the best iPad accessories. It’s a consistently accurate tool for digital artists and heavy note-takers, and it’s the only stylus to offer pressure sensitivity across iPadOS. Since it can attach to the side of an iPad magnetically, it’s also easy to charge and pair. Just make sure your iPad will work with the device before you buy.

Seagate Storage Expansion Card for Xbox Series X/S

Seagate Storage Expansion Card for Xbox Series X|S (1TB)

Seagate

For better or worse, the only way for Xbox Series X/S owners to fully expand their console’s storage for current-gen games is to use a proprietary storage card. Seagate’s Storage Expansion Card remains the only official one of those, but right now both its 1TB and 2TB models are down to all-time lows. The former is available for $150, which is $45 below its typical street price, while the latter is $80 less than usual at $280. While that’s still pricey compared to traditional (and PS5-compatible) SSDs, it’s at least some savings for those tired of uninstalling games to save space. Recent leaks suggest that cards from other manufacturers are on the way, but it’s unclear if they’ll cost less than these discounts at launch.

Anker Soundcore Life Q30

Anker Soundcore Life Q30

Anker

Anker Soundcore Life Q30

This deal takes $12 off the typical going rate for what was already one of the best values among wireless noise-canceling headphones.

Anker’s Soundcore Life Q30 is one of the few sets of wireless noise-cancelling headphones worth recommending that cost less than $100, and currently they’re down to $68 at Amazon with an on-page coupon. While this isn’t the absolute lowest price we’ve seen, it’s $12 below the pair’s typical going rate. The Life Q30’s active noise cancellation isn’t as comprehensive as our favorite wireless headphones, but for a fraction of the price, it’s strong enough to be useful. The whole thing is comfortable to wear for hours at a time, and it can last a superb 40 to 50 hours on a charge. Be warned that the pair is extremely bass-heavy by default, but it’s possible to even out its sound through Anker’s companion app. Call quality and the included transparency mode are just so-so, however.

Samsung Evo Select

Samsung Evo Select (256GB)

Samsung

The 256GB model of Samsung’s Evo Select microSD card is down to $18, which is an all-time low and roughly $6 below its typical street price. This isn’t the fastest microSD card on the market, but it’s performant enough for devices like the Nintendo Switch or Steam Deck, and this deal gets you a good chunk of storage space for relatively little cash. Samsung backs the card with a 10-year limited warranty, too. If you need more room and want something with faster read and write speeds, the previous-gen Samsung Pro Plus is a solid value at its current deal price of $47.

Amazon Echo Dot (5th Gen)

Amazon Echo Dot (5th Gen)

Amazon

Amazon Echo Dot (5th Gen)

This is within $5 of the best price we’ve seen for Amazon’s diminutive smart speaker. The Echo Dot with Clock, which includes an LED display, is also on sale for an all-time low of $40.

The latest Amazon Echo Dot is down to $30, which is $5 more than its all-time low but still $10 to $15 below its usual street price. The Dot is the top budget pick in our guide to the best smart speakers: It delivers surprisingly clear and well-balanced sound for its size and remains an accessible entry point for anyone looking to use Alexa to stream music, control smart home devices and do other smart assistant things. The Google Nest Mini remains a worthy alternative for those who prefer the Google Assistant, but the Dot sounds better. If you’d like an LED display that can display the time, weather and other bits of information at a glance, the Echo Dot with Clock is on sale for an all-time low of $40.

Samsung 980 Pro SSD

Samsung 980 Pro SSD (2TB)

Samsung

The 2TB model of Samsung’s 980 Pro SSD is on sale for $140, which is within $5 of its lowest price to date. The drive has typically sold between $150 and $160 in recent months. While it isn’t the newest PCIe 4.0 SSD Samsung offers, the 980 Pro is still a decent value for those looking to expand the storage of a PlayStation 5. You’ll just need to grab a heatsink along with it for another $10 or so. (Samsung sells a version of the 980 Pro that comes with a heatsink in the box, but its 2TB model currently costs $170.) If you only need 1TB of space and want a faster PCIe 4.0 drive, SK Hynix’s Platinum P41 is good alternative at its current deal price of $90, which is a new low. If you just want to upgrade an older PC, meanwhile, a less expensive PCIe 3.0 drive like the ones in our best SSDs guide will still work just fine.

Samsung T7 Shield 

Samsung T7 Shield (1TB)

Samsung

Samsung T7 Shield (1TB)

The T7 Shield is a particularly durable portable SSD for those who often need to move files between devices, and it’s now down to its lowest price to date.

Samsung’s T7 Shield is a ruggedized version of our favorite portable SSD, and right now its 1TB model is down to a new low of $75. That’s about $10 less than this model’s average street price over the last few months. Alternatives like the SanDisk Extreme can squeeze out a bit more performance, but the T7 Shield is fast enough for most needs, and its thick rubber shell should provide some extra peace of mind if you ever want to take the drive on the road. It’s also water-resistant with an IP65 rating. 

iPad deals

Apple iPad Air (5th Gen)

Photo by Nathan Ingraham / Engadget

Apple iPad Air (5th Gen)

This deal comes within $20 of the all-time low for what we consider the best iPad for most people. The iPad Mini and 10th-gen iPad are on sale as well.

It’s a decent time to be in the market for a new iPad, as the iPad Air, iPad Mini and 10th-gen iPad are all at or near the lowest prices we’ve tracked. The Air is down to $500, which matches the best price we’ve seen outside of a brief drop to $479 last year, while the Mini and 10th-gen iPad are each at a previous low of $400. As we note in our iPad buying guide, the Air should provide the best blend of price and performance for most people, but the Mini is still worth buying if you’d prefer a more compact tablet. The 10th-gen iPad is more of a compromise, as it doesn’t support the latest Apple Pencil and lacks a laminated display, but the broad strokes of its design are similar to the Air, and its landscape-oriented front camera is convenient. We gave the Air a review score of 90 last year, the Mini a score of 89 in 2021 and the 10th-gen iPad a score of 85 this past October.

Anker PowerLine III USB-C cables

Anker PowerLine III USB-C Cable (6ft, 2-pack)

Anker

If you need to stock up on USB-C cables, this two-pack of Anker’s PowerLine III is worth a look at $13. Both cables are six feet long and rated for up to 100W charging, so they can charge many beefy laptops at, or at least close to, full speeds. Anker covers them with a lifetime warranty as well. The one hang-up is that they’re limited to USB 2.0 data transfer rates, so they aren’t the quickest for moving large files around. But if you already own a fast charger and need some backup cables for the road, this is a nice value. This deal marks the bundle’s lowest price to date and comes in about $5 below its usual price. 

Samsung S95B OLED TV

Samsung S95B OLED TV (55-inch)

Photo by Sam Rutherford / Engadget

The 55-inch version of Samsung’s S95B OLED TV is down to $1,279 at Amazon, which is the lowest price we’ve seen outside of special discounts for education customers. Though we haven’t reviewed this TV, other sites we trust have consistently praised the S95B for delivering the high contrast expected of any good OLED set without sacrificing too much in the way of brightness. Samsung has replaced this 2022 model with the new S95C, but the upgrades don’t appear to be massive, and the S95B is a much better value at this price for those willing to pay for a premium TV. (The 55-inch S95C currently retails for $2,500.) Note that Samsung TVs do not support Dolby Vision HDR, however.

Apple Music 4-month subscription

Apple Music 4-month trial

Apple

Apple Music 4-month trial

If you’ve been looking to try Apple Music for the first time, this promotion gets you a four-month trial for free. If you’re a former but non-active subscriber, you can get a three-month membership instead.

We recently named Apple Music the most well-rounded music streaming service thanks to its extensive library, lossless streaming support, ability to upload local files, helpful curation and not-overly-cluttered UI. If you’ve been thinking of switching over, Best Buy is running a promotion that gives new subscribers four months of the service for free. If you’ve subscribed to Apple Music in the past and are now looking to come back, you can get a three-month trial. For reference, Apple normally gives new members one month of Music for free, then charges $11 a month for an individual plan. Just be aware that the subscription will be set to auto-renew after the trial period ends.

MasterClass

MasterClass Family Membership

MasterClass

MasterClass Family Membership

This deal takes 35 percent off the usual cost of a MasterClass family plan, which lets you access the service’s celebrity-taught courses on up to six devices.

MasterClass has rolled out a Mother’s Day promo that brings the price of its annual Duo and Family memberships down to $180. Normally, a year of the Duo plan (which makes the service accessible on two devices) costs $240, while the Family plan (which bumps the device limit up to six) goes for $276. The standard Individual plan, which normally costs $180, is not part of the offer. MasterClass itself is far from essential, but it still offers a wide range of specific celebrity-taught courses, from cooking with Gordon Ramsay to songwriting with John Legend. If you and a loved one (or five) have been curious to try it out, this is a nice chance to save; just note that the membership will auto-renew by default.

Shark robot vacuum sale

Shark AV2501AE Robot Vacuum

Shark

Shark AV2501AE Robot Vacuum

This is a roughly $250 discount for this variant of the top midrange pick in our guide to the best robot vacuums.

We recommend a couple of Shark devices in our guide to the best robot vacuums, and right now a handful of similar robovacs from the company are heavily discounted. Of note is the Shark AV2501AE, which is about $250 off its usual street price at $350. Like the top midrange pick in our guide, it offers LiDAR navigation sensors to more precisely map out your floors and a bagless, self-emptying base that can hold up to 60 days of debris. It can also work with Alexa or the Google Assistant. If you want to save a few bucks, the Shark AV911S is another solid buy at $300, though it has a simpler mapping system by comparison and a smaller self-emptying base. 

Amazon Kindle Scribe

Amazon Kindle Scribe (16GB)

Photo by Cherlynn Low / Engadget

Amazon Kindle Scribe (16GB)

This is a new low for Amazon’s highest-end Kindle, which includes a stylus for jotting down notes. Note that this offer will only be available if you subscribe to Amazon Prime.

Amazon’s Kindle Scribe is down to $283 for a 16GB model, which is $57 off its normal price and a new low. Higher-capacity models are also on sale. The catch is that each deal is only available to Amazon Prime members. Either way, the Scribe is Amazon’s highest-end Kindle and the first to support note-taking with its included stylus. With its 10.2-inch display, it’s also the largest e-reader Amazon makes. While this isn’t the most advanced e-ink tablet for writing, being able to mark up e-books and jot down to-do lists has its conveniences, and it still offers all the same reading benefits of any other Kindle. Amazon has steadily updated the device in recent months, too. The downside, besides the extreme cost, is that it’s not waterproof. We gave the Kindle Scribe a review score of 85 last November. 

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This story originally appeared on Engadget

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