Apple isn’t known for its sales, so when it does one, it’s news.
Today it unveiled its Black Friday deals available both on its online store and at its retail stores around most of the world in a promotional email to customers. Basically if you buy an iPad, Mac or iPod, and you get an Apple gift-card worth between $50 and $150. And if you buy online but live near an Apple store, you have the option of picking up your purchase at the store today. Otherwise you can skip the crowds and take advantage of free shipping.
While technically they’re not discounts, you can apply the value of the gift card to your purchase, and thus turn it into one. I started the process of buying an iPad Air plus a smart cover today from within the Apple Store app on my iPhone and by default, the app applied a $75 reduction.
Here’s the rundown: Buying any iPad Air gets you a $75 gift card, while an iPad mini gets you a $50 card.
Buy a Mac, either an iMac, a MacBook Pro or MacBook Air, and you’ll get a $150 gift card. An iPod touch will get you a $50 a gift card; An iPod nano of Apple TV gets you a $25 gift card.
The deal also applies for a few accessories, some Apple made, some from third parties. An Apple Time Capsule will get you a $50 gift card. So will a Nest smart thermostat, or a LaCie three-terabyte hard drive. An HP Photosmart 7520 printer will get you a $25 gift card, as will a Nike Fuel fitness band.
The deals tend to differ around the world. While Apple is basically doing the same thing with gift cards in Australia and New Zealand, stores in the UK and Europe are offering outright discounts as 9 to 5 Mac reported earlier. For example, Apple has knocked 31 pounds off the price of an iPad Air. In France the price of an iPad Air has been trimmed by 35 Euro.
Of course the Apple Store isn’t the only place you can get the iPad today. Retailers Wal-Mart and Target have already announced this morning that iPads are among the biggest selling items at their holiday sales. At Target it was the iPad Air. At Wal-Mart it was the iPad mini.
In both cases those stores used discounts on the night before Thanksgiving to generate foot traffic. Both trimmed the price on an iPad Air by $20. And today Target is offering a $100 gift card with the purchase of any full-size iPad, basically dropping the starting price to $379.
Best Buy is said to be offering the iPad Air for between $50 and $70 off, depending on model. The entry-level model 16GB model is going for $449, while 32GB and 64GB models get $60 off. The 128GB models gets a $70 discount. That knocks the price on the maxed-out 128GB iPad Air with cellular data to $859.
Similar deals were also on offer at Best Buy for the iPad mini. But it’s also worth remembering that supplies on that device in particular were going a little short. As recently as last week it appeared that your best shot at getting one of those was to go to the Apple Store and not one of the other retailers. For example, certain iPad mini models were already sold out online this morning at Best Buy. So your mileage may vary.
As recently as last week, the shipping time on that device was running from five to 10 days from Apple’s online store, while they were generally available at Apple retail stores, suggesting that’s where Apple has been concentrating its inventory.