The Beats Solo Pro are $50 off at Best Buy, taking the price down to $249.99. This matches the lowest price we’ve seen yet. And to our knowledge, this is only the second time they’ve been discounted. If you haven’t read our review, these are the best Beats headphones yet, according to The Verge’s Chris Welch, with a noise cancellation effect and sound quality that are inarguably great.
Those gifted with large noggins, be warned: you might find that these on-ear headphones clamp down too hard on your ears. Another warning, this time for people with heads of all sizes, is that these charge via Apple’s Lightning connector, not USB-C. Best Buy’s deal includes several colors, and you have through Monday, January 27th, to take advantage of this price drop.
Google’s Pixel 3A and Pixel 4 are cheaper than usual right now. The discounts ($50 and $100, respectively) are decent, but the real reason to consider buying one now is for the free gift card that you’ll get with purchase. Here’s the full list of offers happening now:
I reviewed this model when it released in late 2019, and I found that it’s a worthy successor to the Home Mini in terms of improved sound quality and touch controls. (They light up to make it easier to see the capacitive buttons.) It can also hang on the wall out of the box, which is a novel feature you won’t find in other affordable smart speakers — that is, unless you buy additional accessories to make it possible.
Logitech’s G903 wireless ambidextrous gaming mouse is steeply discounted at Best Buy. Usually $149.99, you can get it for $59.99 right now. Unlike most both-handed gaming mice on the market, the G903 has side buttons on each side of the mouse. It’s also compatible with Logitech’s PowerPlay wireless charging mouse pad.
Google’s most recent phones, the Pixel 3A and Pixel 4, are discounted and include a free (generous) gift card with purchase at a few retailers. Neither amounts to the lowest price that we’ve seen, but still, it’s another chance to get in on the savings if you missed out on the Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals.
B&H Photo is offering the same deal, knocking $50 off of the Pixel 3A and including a $100 B&H Photo gift card with purchase. However, you won’t find the same deal available for the Pixel 3A XL there.
If you have your mind set on Google’s 2019 flagship phone, the Pixel 4, you can save there, too. Best Buy has knocked $100 off the prices of the black-colored 64GB Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL (now costing $699.99 and $799.99, respectively). What’s appealing about this deal is that each phone includes a huge $200 Best Buy gift card with purchase.
To get these savings on the Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL, make sure to select “Activate Later” under the price listed on Best Buy’s product page.
A good portable SSD should be small, fast, and able to connect to devices through the almighty USB-C port. Samsung’s new T7 Touch checks all of those boxes, plus another big one: it’s more secure than your average SSD. There’s a capacitive fingerprint reader built into the top of the drive, which works like the one you might have on your phone or laptop. After you’ve enrolled a fingerprint via the free companion app, it will require authentication before it mounts to your computer or phone. This feature — backed by AES 256-bit hardware encryption to lock down your biometric data and the drive’s contents — makes it so that not just anyone can plug it in and see what you have stored. It works exactly like I thought it would.
Samsung’s software for the SSD (compatible with Windows 10, macOS, and Android) is simple to use. The software even comes loaded onto the drive for easy installation, with the exception of the Android version, which is available from the Google Play Store. You’ll need to create a password in the software to use the sensor, and you can enroll up to four fingerprints that can unlock it. The most obvious choice might be to log a few of your own fingers. But if you plan to share this with a classmate, your family, or colleagues at your company, the better move is to register other people’s fingerprints with the drive, too. That way, it can be passed back and forth without much worrying.
As you probably expected, activating the T7 Touch’s security settings in the app means that you’ll need to authenticate your fingerprint each time you connect the drive to a phone or computer. The LEDs behind the sensor blink repeatedly while it waits for you to verify your identity, and until you do, it mounts as a mostly useless read-only drive that supplies a download of Samsung’s SSD software.
It’s a little more useless in this read-only state than I’d like. Samsung doesn’t let you create a customized message that appears automatically, like one to point people in the right direction to return the drive should it get misplaced. Also, if you don’t have a fingerprint logged and you forget the password for the drive, simply resetting it isn’t an option. It will permanently stay in read-only mode, and you will have to contact Samsung to arrange a manual reset.
I tested the 500GB model that costs $129.99. Samsung also offers a 1TB version that costs $229.99 and a 2TB drive that costs $399.99. That’s getting up there in price for a drive that doesn’t support Thunderbolt 3’s faster transfer speeds, though to the T7 Touch’s credit, it’s not far off what the previous generation T5 sold for. In addition to the new fingerprint security, the T7 is also considerably faster than the T5.
For those who aren’t familiar with the T5, Samsung’s 2017 portable SSD, the T7 Touch still looks and feels like a compact business cardholder. It’s easy to pocket, and its slim design lets it slide easily into practically any bag. This new model is wrapped in aluminum that Samsung says makes it shockproof from a drop of up to six and a half feet in height. In the box, you’ll find a USB-C to USB-C cable as well as a USB-C to USB Type-A cable in case you need to connect it to a device that doesn’t have a USB-C port.
Similar as they might look, the T7 Touch’s NVMe solid-state drive amounts to a huge boost in transfer speeds compared to the SATA drive used in the T5. We compared several USB-C drives last year to find out what kind of portable drive you should be spending your money on, and those with NVMe storage inside came away the clear winners — even though they cost a premium. This is the technology you want inside of your laptop, your next-gen gaming console, and definitely what you want inside of your next portable drive.
Of course, just how fast this (and any) drive transfers relies entirely on what kind of computer you’re plugging it into. Samsung’s T7 Touch uses the USB 3.2 Gen 2 interface with 10Gbps bandwidth (same bandwidth as USB 3.1 Gen 2, different name). Samsung claims up to 1,050MB/s read and 1,000MB/s write speeds, and it’s possible to achieve something close to those marks if these criteria are met:
Your laptop or desktop has a USB Type-A or USB-C port that supports the USB 3.2 Gen 2 interface or faster
Your laptop or desktop has an NVMe drive inside, not a slower SATA drive. (Most SSDs on the market use SATA, though NVMe is lowering in cost, and therefore picking up in popularity.)
I tested this drive out with a 2019 MacBook Pro, which features two Thunderbolt 3 ports that can handle far more bandwidth than Samsung’s T7 Touch is capable of piping through. Using Blackmagic Disk Speed Test, the T7 Touch boasted an average write speed of 807MB/s and read speed of 903MB/s. That’s below what Samsung advertises above, but it’s what I expected. It’s possible that the larger-capacity models in this lineup could perform slightly better since large-capacity solid-state drives are allegedly faster, thanks to having more NAND layers to write to. But overall, these numbers are on par with performance from a 1TB Intel 660p NVMe SSD fitted in an enclosure.
Arbitrary read and write speeds are nice to have, but the most transparent kind of test is seeing how long it takes to transfer a large file from the drive to the laptop and from the laptop back to the drive. It took nine seconds on average to copy a 13GB file on the MacBook Pro, roughly a 40 percent improvement compared to the T5 SATA SSD doing the same test. To copy the file to the T7 Touch, it took 11 seconds on average, an approximate 35 percent increase in speed compared to the T5. I also ran this test with the aforementioned Intel 660p NVMe SSD mounted in an enclosure, and the results were within a second of what the T7 Touch managed.
At first, the takeaway here doesn’t look great for Samsung; a large 1TB NVMe drive and an enclosure to pop it into costs just a bit more than this 500GB drive, yet performs just about the same — if not slightly better. Building your own drive will afford you more storage for less money, but so long as you’re all right with taking a hit in storage capacity, Samsung’s latest portable drive gets you added security and a more compact design.
Having a fingerprint sensor won’t make this a must-have product for everyone. But if you’re sold on the form factor and the speed improvements Samsung made here, you should know that a version of the T7 that won’t support biometrics is coming in Q2 2020. It will likely be slightly more affordable (though Samsung hasn’t yet confirmed the price) and will even out the value better compared to a DIY NVMe drive. Still, for the time being, Samsung’s new model isn’t much more expensive than its predecessor, and the added features and faster transfer speeds amount to a product you likely won’t regret buying.
Vox Media has affiliate partnerships. These do not influence editorial content, though Vox Media may earn commissions for products purchased via affiliate links. For more information, see our ethics policy.
Alienware’s previous-generation m17 gaming laptop is usually $1,999.99, but it’s steeply discounted right now from Dell (according to Dell, this coupon is no longer being honored). This 17-inch model houses Intel’s 9th Gen i7 processor (the hexa-core 9750H with a base clock speed of 2.6GHz and a maximum clock speed of 4.5GHz) and Nvidia’s midrange RTX 2060 graphics chip. It also comes with 16GB of DDR4 RAM installed and a fast 512GB PCIe M.2 SSD. One note about the RAM: you can add more if you’d like, unlike the m17 R2 model released in May 2019 that has RAM soldered to the board.
There are a few more reasons to consider this model if you’re looking for a gaming laptop. Its 17-inch QHD (1560 x 1440) display has a 120Hz refresh rate, which means the games that can run smoothly on this machine will look even better than they would on a standard 60Hz monitor.
To snag this laptop, add it to your cart without making any adjustments to the configuration. Then, at checkout, enter the offer code AFF700OFFAW to see the price drop to $1,299.99.
Fitbit’s Inspire HR fitness tracker is down to $69.99 at Amazon. Usually priced at $99.99, this device offers around five days of battery life before it needs to be charged. Its display offers a minimal user interface (according to The Verge’s Natt Garun in her review, it leaves a lot to be desired vis-à-vis notifications), and its lightweight and discreet design could make it a good fit for you.
You can still save an extra 20 percent on select used and refurbished products sold through Amazon Warehouse. We wrote about this deal last week, but Microsoft Xbox One controllers, smartwatches, and other gadgets are now cheaper than usual. No offer code is necessary; just add one of the listed items to your cart, and the discount will be reflected at checkout.
You can save a good amount of cash on Blu-ray movies and video games on Amazon right now. In addition to discounts, it’s offering a “buy two, get one free” promotion, and the selection is great. If you can’t make up your mind about whether you want three movies or three games, you can mix and match them. You’ll get the most affordable one for free at checkout.
To say that Amazon has some good deals happening today is putting it lightly. In addition to the promotion above, you can get the MSI GV63 15.6-inch gaming laptop for $1,175 (usually $1,799). This is a fantastic deal for a few reasons: it has a 120Hz refresh rate display, 16GB of RAM, 256GB of fast NVMe SSD storage, and Nvidia’s RTX 2060 graphics chip.
As far as what’s not so great about this machine, it seems like the 8th Gen Intel Core i7 processor might be the spec to age the fastest. Also, the design might not speak to you. But those things aside, a midrange gaming laptop like this one usually costs hundreds of dollars more, so consider MSI’s deal if you’re in the market for an upgrade or your first machine.
Note: this story has been rewritten because a previous version contained substantially incorrect analysis. Please see the correction note below. We regret the error.
Since 2009, the European Commission has been trying to convince tech companies to adopt a single charging method for our gadgets, primarily smartphones, in a quest to reduce the waste that comes when every new gadget you buy includes yet another AC adapter in the box. Now, Apple’s Lightning connector may be at risk.
Back at the beginning of the decade, the commission was mostly successful in driving the voluntary adoption of the Micro-USB charging port, which became the standard on every non-Apple smartphone until the newer, more capable USB-C came along. That reduced the number of different cables and chargers a household needed to top up their devices.But in the view of Maroš Šefčovič, a vice president of the European Commission who is now proposing further regulation, voluntary agreements haven’t been enough.
In a statement before the European Parliament on January 13th, Šefčovič argued that voluntary agreements from the industry weren’t doing enough. Apple, Google, Lenovo, LG, Motorola, Samsung and Sony all voluntarily agreed in 2018 to standardize on some form of USB-C charging by 2021, but allowed for things like Lightning to USB-C cables and adapters instead of changing the port on the phone itself.
Šefčovič mentions that one of the outcomes might be to eliminate proprietary connectors( like Apple’s Lightning port, though he didn’t mention it by name). And he suggests that the EU might force manufacturers to stop shipping chargers with each new phone, which could be frustrating unless manufacturers know their customers would already have the right charger and cable for whatever smartphone they buy waiting for them at home.
Apple’s not particularly happy about the threat of regulation, of course, and argues that we might not have shifted from Micro-USB to the more durable, versatile, and bidirectional Lightning and USB-C to begin with if they’d been forced to adopt a single standard back in 2009. Here’s the full statement the company issued Thursday, mirroring a very similar one Apple issued a year ago:
Apple stands for innovation and deeply cares about the customer experience. We believe regulation that forces conformity across the type of connector built into all smartphones stifles innovation rather than encouraging it, and would harm consumers in Europe and the economy as a whole.
More than 1 billion Apple devices have shipped using a Lightning connector in addition to an entire ecosystem of accessory and device manufacturers who use Lightning to serve our collective customers. Legislation would have a direct negative impact by disrupting the hundreds of millions of active devices and accessories used by our European customers and even more Apple customers worldwide, creating an unprecedented volume of electronic waste and greatly inconveniencing users.
We do not believe there is a case for regulation given the industry is already moving to the use of USB Type-C through a connector or cable assembly. This includes Apple’s USB-C power adapter which is compatible with all iPhone and iPad devices. This approach is more affordable and convenient for consumers, enables charging for a wide range of portable electronic products, encourages people to re-use their charger and allows for innovation.
Prior to 2009, the Commission considered mandating that all smartphones use only USB Micro-B connectors which would have restricted the advancement to Lightning and USB Type-C. Instead, the Commission established a voluntary, industry standards-based approach that saw the market shift from 30 chargers down to 3, soon to be two — Lightning and USB-C, showing this approach does work.
We hope the Commission will continue to seek a solution that does not restrict the industry’s ability to innovate and bring exciting new technology to customers.
And it’s worth noting there are already a couple of studies that conclude forcing a single connector standard could harm consumers more than it helps, and otherwise might not achieve the EC’s aims — though you should know one of those studies was commissioned by Apple, and the other by an association of tech companies that includes Apple. Among other arguments, they suggest that charger incompatibility isn’t generally a problem for EU households, more than half of which have standardized on one kind of cable anyhow; that households would prefer a new charger to come in the box instead of none; and that USB-C both costs more to produce and has a 20 percent higher carbon footprint, “due to the USB Type-C connector being larger and having a higher mass than the Lightning connector.”
But the EC plans to publish its own dueling study in the upcoming weeks, which will presumably suggest differently.
Correction, January 24th at 10:20 PM ET: This story originally appeared with the headline “No, the EU isn’t asking Apple to kill the Lightning cable.” That analysis was incorrect; this story has been rewritten to reflect the fact that EU regulation on common charging is still developing. It has also been updated with a recent statement from Apple made in response to the EU’s efforts. We apologize for the error.
If you’ve been waiting on a deal for Nvidia’s RTX 2060 desktop graphics card, the entry-level model in its lineup of raytracing-capable GPUs, an official price drop has been issued for the company’s Founders’ Edition model (via PC Gamer). It’s now $299 from Nvidia’s store, which is a $50 discount from the original price.
Admittedly, that’s not a huge price cut, and it’s not even the only RTX 2060 at this price point. EVGA makes a model going for this price, too. But the appeal here is that it now costs, at most, a measly $25 or so more than the Nvidia GTX 1660 Ti graphics card. While those cards are fairly comparable (they usually come within 10-20 frames per second of the RTX 2060’s performance in a lot of YouTube comparisons, and are even built with the same efficient Turing architecture), the RTX 2060 holds the lead with more power, native raytracing in games that support it, and Nvidia’s Deep Learning Super-Sampling (DLSS) setting, which is also only in select titles.
The Google Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL with 64GB of storage are each $100 off at B&H Photo, and include a $200 B&H Photo gift card with purchase. This brings the starting price down to $699 and $799, respectively. These are the unlocked versions of the phone, and they work on every major US carrier.
We saw prices for these configurations start at $599 and $699 during Black Friday, but this is almost as good of a deal considering the massive gift card that’s included with purchase.
Now, for something completely different, The Office Complete Series costs $29.99 through iTunes. You still have plenty of time to watch it on Netflix, though it’s set to leave the service for NBC’s Peacock in 2021. Whether you want to preempt this shift, or just want to own it digitally, you can pick it up for a big discount today.
The 38-disc DVD collection currently costs $50 at Best Buy, so paying less for the more space-conscious version (in HD, no less) is certainly a good deal to consider. If you’d prefer a platform-agnostic option, Vudu offers the complete series for $34.99.
Lastly, Apple’s 2018 iPad Pro is discounted yet again at Best Buy. Both sizes, the 11-inch and 12.9-inch tablets, are up to $200 off. Though, rather than telling you to jump on this deal, I’m advising you to instead hold off for a better one. Here’s why: you’ll only see $200 taken off the cost if you’re looking for upward to 512GB of storage. And even so, we’ve seen this deal hit countless times.
For those looking to spend less on the base model with 64GB of storage, the 11-inch model starts at $674.99 (with the lowest-ever deal from November 2019 being $649.99) and the 12.9-inch tablet costs $874.99 (that price, stubbornly, has never gone below this mark). If you can wait, I’d suggest doing so until the 11-inch model with 64GB of storage goes down to $599.99, and the 12.9-inch entry model drops to $799.99.
It’s only a matter of time until this happens, and given that these tablets are well into their second year on store shelves without a hardware revision to replace them, the drop in price is bound to happen sooner than later.
If you’re tired of doing all of the vacuuming around the house, iRobot’s slick Roomba S9 and S9 Plus robot vacuums are up to $300 off for readers of The Verge. The high-end S9 Plus is $1,099 (down from $1,399) until supplies last at Wellbots with the offer code S9PLUSVERGE. This model comes with a base that the vacuum can automatically find, then deposit its waste bin into (up to 30 times before you’ll need to empty the base).
For those who don’t mind manually dumping the vacuum’s bin into the garbage each time it needs to (after all, the vacuum is doing the hard part for you), you can save yourself even more money. The standard S9 without the base included is $899 (usually $1,099) at Wellbots until supplies last. Just use the offer code S9VERGE at checkout to see the price drop.
These vacuums also feature a squared-off front that should be much better at wedging itself into corners to sweep debris that builds up in your home. If you have pets, its filters can trap mold, pollen, and dust mite allergens from your floor.
Obviously, you don’t have to spend upward of $1,000 to get a robot vacuum that can handle the basics. But iRobot’s high-end models tend to go pretty far beyond that, which warrants their high cost. The company’s S9 series vacuums are — by far — its best-looking yet, and the company claims a 40 percent improvement in suction power over the previous flagship models.
If you’ve never checked out Amazon Warehouse, the selection of products is vast. As it relates to tech, a few examples of what you can find (which are all eligible for a discount) range from lightly used Xbox One and PS4 controllers and Philips Hue’s recent Bluetooth-enabled smart bulbs to Sony’s excellent WH1000XM3 noise-canceling headphones.
We’ll list these and a few other favorite picks from the batch below. But first, a few things to keep in mind: make sure “Amazon Warehouse” is listed as the seller on the product you’re looking at, or else the discount won’t apply at checkout. The 20 percent price cut will go into effect at checkout, so no offer codes are necessary (if you don’t see the price drop at checkout, that product isn’t eligible). Lastly, since you’re buying used and not new, there’s a chance that the product you receive might not work as you’d hoped it would. Here’s to hoping that it works to your liking, though.
(Note: these prices were accurate at the time of publishing)
Philips Hue’s two-pack of Bluetooth-enabled smart bulbs is around $19 (before tax) and is listed as being in “very good” condition.
Sony WH1000XM3 wireless, noise-canceling headphones are around $188 (before tax) and Amazon lists them as being in “good” condition.
Microsoft’s Xbox One Bluetooth controller that works with consoles, Windows 10 PCs with Bluetooth, as well as iOS 13 and Android 10 devices costs around $34 (before tax) and is listed as being in “good” condition.
Sony’s “magma red” DualShock 4 controller that works with consoles, Windows 10 PCs with Bluetooth, as well as iOS 13 and Android 10 devices costs around $31 (before tax) and is listed as being in “like new” condition.
Apple’s official USB to USB-C dongle is just over $5 (before tax) and listed in “very good” condition. Apple sells it for $19 brand-new from its stores.
Jabra’s Elite 65t truly wireless headphones are a measly $44 and change (before tax) and are listed as being in “very good” condition. Buying used in-ear headphones is a roll of the dice that you may not want to chance, but it could work out well for you.
One of the best things about Google Chrome is its robust catalog of extensions. Microsoft’s new version of the Edge browser, which just launched for Windows 10, macOS, and mobile, is built on the same Chromium code base and can also tap into the Chrome web store. This means that it supports the same tremendously large selection of extensions, in addition to Microsoft’s own relatively limited selection of native extensions that are available through its store.
In this article, I’m going to walk you through how to find and install extensions in Edge and ultimately get you set up with Chrome extensions. Gaining access to Chrome’s extensions means taking a few extra steps. But overall, this is an easy and fast operation that will help make Microsoft’s improved browser feel like home — that is, if Google Chrome is where you do most of your browsing.
The first step is to download Microsoft’s Edge if you haven’t already. Once you’ve done that, proceed.
Find the extensions menu
Once you’ve opened Edge, click the ellipses on the right side of the browser window next to the profile picture
With the drop-down menu extended, select “Extensions,” which is located about halfway down the list of options
Download Edge extensions from Microsoft
After you’ve clicked “Extensions,” a new tab will open in Edge. You can browse for Edge extensions in Microsoft’s Store, although, as mentioned before, its selection is lacking. (The add-ons are apparently still in beta.) Still, it’s simple to install extensions from this source if you find something you’d like.
To open up Microsoft’s selection, click “Get extensions from Microsoft Store” in the left column of the “Extensions” tab, or the link to the right
When you’ve found an extension you want, click “Get” on its page, and it will be added to the browser
Enable Google Chrome extensions
Let’s be honest, you’ll probably be better suited by gaining access to Google’s extensive catalog of extensions, so let’s route you there.
To enable the installation of outside extensions, make sure you’re on Edge’s extension tab described above. Flip the switch next to the option “Allow extensions from other stores” at the bottom left corner of the screen.
After you toggle it on, you’ll need to confirm in a pop-up window that you actually want to do this. You’ll be installing extensions that weren’t technically made for Edge, and it may affect performance, Microsoft claims. Hit “Allow” to proceed.
Activating this option will allow you to install Chrome extensions
Navigate to Google’s Chrome Web Store
You’ll be able to find Google’s complete repository of Chrome extensions on this page. (If the link doesn’t open in Edge, you can simply do a search on Chrome Web Store.)
As you add more extensions to Edge, they’ll populate the Extensions page
Something to be aware of: currently, Google Chrome color themes (found in the Chrome Web Store under the “Extensions” link) don’t work with Edge. That might change, but at the moment, only extensions will work.
Should you ever need to delete or switch off individual extensions, head to the “Extensions” tab again. There, you’ll find them sorted by the places where you downloaded them. Microsoft’s approved extensions and Chrome’s extensions will each be in their own section.
I’ve installed a few of my favorite Chrome extensions on Edge, and, so far, things seem to be working as expected.
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