Dell's official Black Friday ad is here, making it the first consumer electronics-oriented circular we've seen for the upcoming season. So what kind of deals can you expect to see from the budget PC maker? Though the retailer is known for its aggressive TV deals, it's Dell's gaming console deals that have us feeling weak in the knees.
Dell Home Black Friday Ad Analysis
The Good Buys
- Dell Inspiron 15 Celeron 15.6" Laptop for $190
- The Inspiron 15 is a budget notebook powered by a Celeron processor and 4GB of RAM. Although this is the best price we've ever seen for this laptop and configuration (it's an all-time low by $40), we expect to see cheaper budget laptops. In fact, we predict this category will drop as low as $178. However, if you're a Dell Preferred Account holder (you can apply for a credit line here), you'll be able to purchase this laptop for $170. At this price, it's the best budget laptop we've ever seen, blowing away last season's low and our own Black Friday prediction.
- Xbox One Assassin's Creed Bundle for $330
- In late October Microsoft announced it would take $50 off the price of the Xbox One. Included in the price cut are the Xbox One bundles, such as the Assassin's Creed Bundle which the company said it would offer for $349. This deal from Dell takes that discount further, saving you $19 over Microsoft's price. True, there's no Kinect sensor included, but it's $20 under our prediction for Xbox One bundles sans Kinect sensors.
- Sony PlayStation 4 Console with Grand Theft Auto V & The Last of Us Remastered for $400
- Though we've seen the PS4 for as low as $360 (and we've seen The Last of Us as cheap as $28), you'd be hard-pressed to find another deal like this. It includes the PS4 console and two games — the acclaimed hit The Last of Us Remastered and soon-to-be-released Grand Theft Auto V — for $400. We predict PS4 console deals will hit $340. This bundle costs $60 over our prediction, but the extra money buys you two popular games, one of which is currently on preorder for roughly $60. So you're essentially getting a free game with your console.
The Bad Buys
- Dell Venue 8 Pro 3000 Series 8" Windows 32GB Tablet for $150
- Dell's Venue tablets have generally received good press, but in terms of pricing, this deal is worth skipping. About a week after Black Friday 2013, we saw the Venue 8 Pro 32GB (with an Atom Z3740D 1.33GHz quad-core processor) for $99. This deal features the Atom Z3735G 1.8GHz quad-core processor, but in terms of performance, both CPUs are very similar. That makes this tablet deal a "pass" for the time being.
- Samsung UN55H6350 55" LED LCD 1080p Smart HDTV for $798
- Dell Home is typically a heavy hitter when it comes to HDTV deals, so we're a little disappointed with its current Black Friday TV deal line up. For instance, we've seen this 55" Samsung Smart TV for less than $798 twice this year. In fact, just this month Amazon offered this exact TV for $48 less. A generous gift card may sweeten the deal, but at its current price, this is a major miss.
- Dell Inspiron 11 3000 Series Intel Celeron 1.86GHz 11.6" Touchscreen Laptop for $350
- Ultraportables will be a hot-ticket item this Black Friday, but as tempting as this deal may appear, it's actually grossly overpriced. We've seen this laptop for as low as $280. Just this past summer we saw it for $50 cheaper, which makes this a deal that looks good on paper, but is better if skipped.
- Alienware 13 Core i5 13.3" Laptop for $999
- The Alienware 13 is among the smallest gaming laptops you'll find. Unfortunately, at $999 with 8GB of RAM and a 500GB HDD with SSD, we're prone to say it's worth skipping. We've seen its bigger cousin, the Alienware 14, with slightly better specs for $100 less. It's actually somewhat common to find the Alienware 14 at just shy of $999, which makes the 14" model the better value for mobile gamers.
There's still time for Dell to add new deals or even discount existing ones. So we wouldn't count them out of the picture just yet. But based on these initial deals, you're better off forgoing Dell's laptop and TV deals and browsing through the retailer's game console deals. Other heavy hitters like Best Buy and Walmart have yet to leak their ads, but early signs indicate it should be an interesting month for console gamers.
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