Stock up on Libratone Zipp 360-degree multi-room speakers, starting at $42 – CNET

libratone-zipp-speakers

Libratone's colorful, versatile Zipp speakers are on sale for the lowest prices ever (thanks to a Cheapskate-exclusive discount code).

Libratone

How are you fixed for speakers these days? Let me rephrase: How are you fixed for portable, battery-powered Wi-Fi speakers that offer 360-degree sound, AirPlay support and, in some cases, onboard Alexa?

For a limited time, and while supplies last, MorningSave has four Libratone Zipp speaker models on sale for $49 to $99, and coupon code CHEAPSKATE15 knocks an extra 15% off each of them. Meet me at the next paragraph to talk about shipping.

MorningSave's shipping setup works like this: You can pay a one-time $8 charge (for everything, including anything you might go back and order within an hour of your purchase), or you can pay $5 monthly for free shipping on all orders. But if you choose the latter option, you can cancel at any time, effectively walking away with $5 shipping on this order.

I know, it's a little confusing; I kind of wish MorningSave would just factor shipping costs into the price like pretty much every other store does. On the other hand, $5 is mighty cheap, especially if you end up buying multiple speakers.

Speaking of which, let's talk about those. As noted, there are four; you'll choose the model(s) and color(s) once you get to checkout:

  • Libratone Zipp Mini: $41.64 with code
  • Libratone Zipp: $67.15 with code
  • Libratone Zipp Mini 2: $67.15 with code
  • Libratone Zipp 2: $84.15 with code

All four models are portable (with varying battery life) and offer both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity. They all support AirPlay 2 and can be configured for multiroom listening. You can link up to six of the original Zipps or up to 10 of the Zipp 2 models. 

The latter also add Alexa to the mix, though of course if you're using them on the go, your phone must be present for voice commands to work. (Alexa requires internet connectivity.)

CNET hasn't reviewed any of these speakers, so I'll steer you to Amazon for some user reviews of the Zipp 2 -- which is currently selling there for $199 (and was originally $300).

Last thing: That discount code will work for all the Libratone products currently on sale at MorningSave, including the Libratone ONE Click Bluetooth speaker two-pack for $99. (A single currently runs $130 at Amazon.)

Your thoughts?

Get a free Amazon Echo Dot when you sign up for 3 months of SiriusXM for $15

cnet-echo-dot-3
Fox Van Allen/CNET

Not sure you want satellite radio? Here's an awfully cheap way to test-drive it: For a limited time, new customers can get three months of SiriusXM Premier for just $15 -- and a free Echo Dot to go with it.

What does a Dot have to do with a service you listen to in your car? Actually, SiriusXM also supports streaming, meaning you can listen on your phone or tablet via app and in your home via -- you guessed it -- smart speakers like the Dot.

The latter is the third-generation model (so, hockey puck, not orb), definitely a nice little perk if you don't already have a houseful.

The important caveat here: After three months, you'll start getting billed at the regular rate ($13 per month) unless you cancel.


CNET's Cheapskate scours the web for great deals on tech products and much more. For the latest deals and updates, follow him on Facebook and Twitter. You can also sign up for deal texts delivered right to your phone. Find more great buys on the CNET Deals page and check out our CNET Coupons page for the latest Walmart discount codeseBay couponsSamsung promo codes and even more from hundreds of other online stores. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Answers live on our FAQ page.

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These Qi wireless charging pads are on clearance for just $5 each – CNET

If you own a phone that supports wireless charging, it's time to start deploying wireless charging pads in all the strategic locations: bedside, desk, end table and so on. This is not an expensive proposition -- not today, anyway. I've got two pretty sweet deals on Qi (pronounced "chee") pads -- one for phones, one for AirPods.

I've also included a couple of AC-adapter and car-charger options, as these pads are both BYO USB port.

As always, these are available for a limited time, and while supplies last.

Lecone

Amazon seller: LeconeDirect

Price: $5 with promo code VYMIEL4M

This is pretty great, and not just because it supports fast charging speeds of up to 10 watts (with a compatible AC adapter, not included). No, admiration comes from the 3.3-foot charging cable, which is integrated and wraps up inside the pad. That makes this especially great for travel.

Note that this code should work with any of the four available colors (another nice little perk; the vast majority of these things are basic black).

Lecone

Amazon seller: LeconeDirect

Price: $5 with promo code ZMOBVMCD

Why bother with a dedicated charging pad for your AirPods when you can use just about any standard pad, including the one above? Simple: Maybe your other pad is busy charging your phone. Plus, this one is super-compact and designed specifically for AirPods with Wireless Charging Case and AirPods Pro. On a larger pad, it can be tricky to position the AirPods case "just so" to actually start it charging.

Worth noting: This pad should work even if your AirPods case is inside a protective case, so long as it's 4mm thick or less.

HONOT US

Amazon seller: HONOT US

If you don't mind going the no-brand route, here's a simple two-pack of wall plugs, each with a Quick Charge 3.-compatible Type-A USB port. That'll work for either of the aforementioned Qi pads; this covers you in case you decide to buy both.

Aukey

Amazon seller: Aukey Direct

Price: $7.69 with on-page 10%-off coupon and promo code BFTJH5VD

Aukey's impressive little power-port plug serves up two USB ports: One Type-A Quick Charge and one USB-C with Power Delivery. It has a 4.7-star average rating from over 2,300 buyers, so, yeah, it gets the job done on the run.

CNET's Cheapskate scours the web for great deals on tech products and much more. For the latest deals and updates, follow him on Facebook and Twitter. You can also sign up for deal texts delivered right to your phone. Find more great buys on the CNET Deals page and check out our CNET Coupons page for the latest Walmart discount codeseBay couponsSamsung promo codes and even more from hundreds of other online stores. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Answers live on our FAQ page.

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Saturday deals: $12 Bluetooth selfie stick, $59 phone gimbal, $21 monitor mount and more – CNET

Happy weekend, cheeps! I hope you're staring down the barrel of some unseasonably warm weather as we are here in Michigan. Must. Return to. Outdoors!

Like, maybe, go out and shoot some video? With a free OnePlus phone, maybe? Hey, just spitballing. Maybe you're content to stay in and play a free game. You do you. (Survey: Is that phrase played out or still viable?)

I found some great stuff to kick off your weekend. Take a look:

Atumtek

Amazon seller: Rosesy

Price: $12 with promo code AATSS065

Sure, at first we all thought selfie sticks were silly. But let's be honest: They're incredibly handy, especially if they're like this one. It doubles as a tripod, an invaluable feature for on-the-go vloggers. Plus, there's a removable Bluetooth remote for snapping photos and starting/stopping video. No-brainer at this price, if you ask me.

Moza

Amazon seller: Videotek-US

Price: $59 with promo code SYRK8NL4

Want to take phone video to the next level? Try shooting with a 3-axis gimbal like this one. It promises to keep your footage much steadier than if you filmed by hand, plus it doubles as a tripod. It also folds up for easy transport.

Although I haven't tried this particular gimbal, one thing I've noticed with products like them (which, incidentally, used to sell for $100 and up): There's a learning curve. Read the instructions, watch some tutorial videos, etc. Because operation isn't always intuitive, a little study is in order.

Humble Bundle

If you don't mind a little profanity with your self-help, check out this massive e-book bundle from Humble Bundle. It includes a whopping 27 titles, most from Microcosm's popular Unf*ck Your Life series. (The one that started it all, Unf*ck Your Brain, sells for $10 for Kindle all by itself.)

There are various tiers available, including one that's just $1, but obviously the best value is buying the whole enchilada. Whatever you choose, a portion of the proceeds goes to Street Books, a "bicycle-powered mobile library serving people who live outside and at the margins in Portland, Oregon."

Win-win.

Atumtek

Amazon seller: Rosesy

Price: $20.57 with promo code AATMS034

Two monitors side-by-side = big productivity boost. But if your desk doesn't quite have room to accommodate them, or you want more positioning options, grab this dual-arm mount. Just clamp it to the back of your desk (or using the grommet-hole option) and attach your Vesa-compatible monitors to the arms.

The mount can accommodate screens of up to 27 inches, and they all for independent tilting, rotating and swiveling. Great, great deal for the price.

Have a safe and enjoyable weekend, and I'll see you back here on Monday!

This article was first published on Friday. It has been updated for the weekend deals. 


CNET's Cheapskate scours the web for great deals on tech products and much more. For the latest deals and updates, follow him on Facebook and Twitter. You can also sign up for deal texts delivered right to your phone. Find more great buys on the CNET Deals page and check out our CNET Coupons page for the latest Walmart discount codeseBay couponsSamsung promo codes and even more from hundreds of other online stores. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Answers live on our FAQ page.

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Make conference calls suck less with the eMeet M1 speakerphone for $70 – CNET

emeet-m1

Amazon's latest Echo Dot? Nope, the eMeet M1 conference speaker.

eMeet

In case a year of nonstop Zoom hasn't taught you everything you need to know, here's how to make meeting calls less terrible:

  • If you're not the call leader, mute your microphone. No one wants to hear you munching your lunch or your dog barking in the background.
  • Dial in a few minutes before the start time so you can deal with any tech glitches that may arise.
  • If you're with a group, use a decent conference speaker. The average office phone does a crummy job in that role, making the call that much worse for others. 

Regarding that last point, do you need to spend hundreds of dollars to get such a speaker? Not today: For a limited time, and while supplies last, you can get the eMeet M1 OfficeCore Bluetooth speakerphone for $89.99 shipped when you clip the on-page $10-off coupon and then apply promo code EMEETM120 at checkout. It originally sold for $180 and now usually runs $100.

The M1 looks like an oversize Amazon Echo Dot. It can connect to your phone or tablet via Bluetooth, but also has a USB option in case you want a laptop hookup. It works for just about any kind of call, including Skype and Zoom.

So why this and not a regular old speakerphone? The M1 features a six-plus-one microphone array that effectively provides 360-degree omnidirectional audio capture up to eight meters away. Translation: Everyone can be heard regardless of where they're sitting.

As a perk, the unit is designed to be portable, meaning you can set up impromptu conference calls just about anywhere. That's thanks to its 2,600-mAh rechargeable battery, which eMeet says is good for 12 hours of calls, 20 hours of music (yep -- this can pull Bluetooth-speaker duty as well) and one month of standby time.  

eMeet recommends this model for groups of three to five people. If you typically convene with larger groups, or you want a conference speaker that's even more advanced, you can pick up the newer eMeet Luna for $67.50 when you clip the 25%-off coupon. That model is suitable for up to eight people and made CNET's list of the best speakerphones for 2021.

I haven't had the opportunity to test the M1 myself, but the product has a 4.4-star average rating from over 450 Amazon customers. (The Luna, for what it's worth, has an even better average from even more buyers.)

Bottom line: If your meeting calls suck because it's so hard to hear and be heard, this should help -- and for a lot less than similar solutions.

Your thoughts?


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CNET's Cheapskate scours the web for great deals on tech products and much more. For the latest deals and updates, follow him on Facebook and Twitter. You can also sign up for deal texts delivered right to your phone. Find more great buys on the CNET Deals page and check out our CNET Coupons page for the latest Walmart discount codeseBay couponsSamsung promo codes and even more from hundreds of other online stores. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Answers live on our FAQ page.  

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Samsung Galaxy S21 deal: Get it unlocked with 256GB for $650 (save $200) – CNET

044-samsung-galaxy-s21-hands-on

The Samsung Galaxy S21 is already on sale. Surprised? I wasn't.

Sarah Tew/CNET

Never, ever buy a phone on launch day -- unless you enjoy paying full price. Case in point: For a limited time, and while supplies last, Best Buy has the unlocked Samsung Galaxy S21 (256GB) for $650. (Be sure to choose the Activate Later option before adding it to your cart.) That's a full $200 off and the best S21 deal I've seen to date.

In fact, the closest second right now is Amazon: The S21 with 128GB for $675. But you'll have to wait one to two months (!) for delivery. Same goes for the 256GB model, which is $700. It's actually a little weird that Best Buy is offering 256GB for the same price as 128GB. It almost feels like a price mistake -- but I'm not complaining.

Read more: The best Samsung Galaxy S21 deals 

Meanwhile, if you're in the market for an S21 Plus or S21 Ultra, Amazon still has the best deals there:

Note, however, that the S21 Plus is two to five weeks out in terms of delivery, while the Ultra shows "out of stock" -- but can still be ordered at that price.

Read more: Review: Samsung's Galaxy S21 is the no-brainer upgrade phone

The key takeaway here is that you can now get 256GB of storage for the same price as 128GB -- while still saving hundreds of dollars overall.

Amazon continues to offer one extra incentive: If you add the Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro to your cart (look for the "1 Applicable Promotions" option below the price) along with one of the S21 phones, you'll get an additional $100 off. That's effectively a 50% discount on the new earbuds; read David Carnoy's Galaxy Buds Pro review to see if they're worth it.

Assuming you can afford to buy the S21 outright, where should you take it for service? That's the beauty of an unlocked phone: Take it to whatever carrier has the best deal for your needs. At US Mobile, for example, you can save up to $250 on your first year of service when you bring your Galaxy S21. You could head to Visible and take advantage of the Party Pay plan, which can net you unlimited service for as little as $25 a month. 

Read more: Cheap phone service: 8 affordable alternatives to the Big 3

Your thoughts?

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CNET's Cheapskate scours the web for great deals on tech products and much more. For the latest deals and updates, follow him on Facebook and Twitter. You can also sign up for deal texts delivered right to your phone. Find more great buys on the CNET Deals page and check out our CNET Coupons page for the latest Walmart discount codeseBay couponsSamsung promo codes and even more from hundreds of other online stores. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Answers live on our FAQ page.

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4 Saturday deals you shouldn’t miss – CNET

Happy weekend, Cheapskates. Today let's look at four ways you can make life a little easier. First up: grilling indoors without filling your house with smoke. Next: improving your laptop's Wi-Fi without spending big bucks on a mesh network. Then there's the mouse pad you didn't know you needed. Yes, mouse pad. Hear me out. And finally: A wireless solar power bank

PowerXL

In my fairly small abode, grilling something on the kitchen stove frequently results in the smoke alarm going off, which isn't fun. And because it's winter here roughly eight months out of the year, grilling outdoors is rarely convenient.

Enter the indoor smokeless grill, which is exactly what it sounds like: An electric grill with a fan designed to virtually eliminate smoke.

This PowerXL model, in a variety of colors, can be yours for just $50 with promo code CNETPXL. It's manufacturer-refurbished, but with a full one-year warranty. Current price at Amazon for a new one: $120. Current user rating at Amazon: 4.6 stars from over 1,400 buyers.

If I had room for another appliance, I'd grab one of these in a heartbeat. If you already own one (or something similar), let me know if you think it's worth finding the space.

TP-Link

Working from home often means tucking yourself in a corner of the house where Wi-Fi doesn't reach. If you're having trouble getting a good signal (and I'll reckon your last Zoom meeting was a good indicator), consider upgrading your laptop's Wi-Fi antenna.

Just plug in this top-rated TP-Link adapter, which supports both 2.4GHz and 5GHz Wi-Fi networks. It has dual, multidirectional antennas, a two-year warranty and 24/7 technical support (always handy when you're dealing with Wi-Fi).

I know $5 isn't a huge savings, but if this boosts your laptop's connectivity, I think you'll agree it's $25 very well spent.

Amazon

A mouse pad? Really? Like I said, I'm here to make your life a little better. And I don't know about you, but I use a mouse all day every day. That can be a huge strain on the wrist, plus my hand gets icy-cold from resting on the desk.

Cheap, effective fix: Amazon's $10 mouse pad (actually only $9.50, to be precise -- you're welcome!). It has a raised, gel-cushioned pad at the bottom, so your wrist stays level with the mouse and your hand stays warm(er).

I've used one of these for years; can't recommend it highly enough. Seriously.

Aikove

Amazon seller: Aikove US

Price: $21.59 with promo code 3GSSQHSJ

From here on out I want all mobile chargers to have a solar panel on one side and a Qi wireless charging pad on the other. This one does, with 26,800-mAh batteries sandwiched in between. That's enough juice to recharge a bunch of mobile devices, probably more than once.

Likes: The slick-looking LCD charge-status window, the three-LED built-in flashlight and the support for charging up to four devices simultaneously.

Dislikes: No USB-C ports, only Type-A, and those LEDs don't give off very much light. But at this price it's hard to complain. If you don't need USB-C, this is a killer deal.

OK, there you go! If I've managed to make your life a little easier today, pay it forward: See if you can find a way to help someone else.

This article was first published on Thursday. It has been updated for the weekend. 


CNET's Cheapskate scours the web for great deals on tech products and much more. For the latest deals and updates, follow him on Facebook and Twitter. You can also sign up for deal texts delivered right to your phone. Find more great buys on the CNET Deals page and check out our CNET Coupons page for the latest Walmart discount codeseBay couponsSamsung promo codes and even more from hundreds of other online stores. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Answers live on our FAQ page.

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Be prepared for the worst: This top-rated portable car jump-starter is on sale for $56 – CNET

tacklife-t8

Jump your car, recharge your phone and more with the Tacklife T8.

Tacklife

A dead battery can ruin your whole day -- your car battery, I mean (though a dead phone battery is pretty ruinous as well). Thankfully, portable jump-starters are inexpensive and plentiful; Amazon is lousy with them. Prices vary depending on peak current and other features, but typically start as low as $40 and run as high as $120.

I'm not sure I'd want the very cheapest jump-starter, but I'd certainly welcome a discount on a pricier one. Presto: Today only, and while supplies last, WorldUS via Amazon has the Tacklife T8 portable jump-starter for $56. That's after clipping the coupon on the product page and also applying promo code KUOPU76L at checkout. The regular price is $80.

I'm not a car guy, meaning my knowledge pretty much ends with "gas goes here," but I do know that most dead batteries can be revived by connecting another battery.

I also know that jumper cables are a hassle, because you need a second car (not always available) parked very close to your car (not always possible), and you have to attach them just so or both cars will explode, killing everyone in a three-block radius.

I may be a little off on that last point, but that's what my brain tells me. And that's why I greatly prefer a little jump-starter like this, because you just connect the red cable to the red terminal and the black to the black, then start the car. Much easier.

This particular jumper offers 800 amps peak current; some others offer more, some offer less. How many amps do you need? According to Tacklife, the T8 can handle gas engines up to 7 liters and diesel engines up to 5.5 liters.

The T8 also doubles as an 18,000-mAh power bank, complete with two USB ports (one of them Quick Charge-compatible) for charging phones and other mobile devices. It triples as a flashlight, with four lighting modes, including SOS. There's an LCD status window and even a built-in compass.

Calling a tow truck to jump a dead battery, just once, would probably cost this much or more.

Your thoughts? 

This article was first published last year. It has been updated with the latest deal. 


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CNET's Cheapskate scours the web for great deals on tech products and much more. For the latest deals and updates, follow the Cheapskate on Facebook and Twitter. Find more great buys on the CNET Deals page and check out our CNET Coupons page for the latest promo codes from Best BuyWalmartAmazon and more. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Find the answers on our FAQ page.

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Top 5 Friday deals: Free Harry Potter ebooks, a complete home gym for $115, the DJI Pocket 2 for $300, more – CNET

Who's good and ready for a weekend right now? 🙋

Before you turn your attention to those much-needed days of leisure (free games, anyone?), let's take a look at some deals that also deserve your attention. There's pretty much everything here that a weekend might need: TV, books, exercise, vlogging and more.

Josh Goldman/CNET

The DJI Pocket 2 is the latest version of this beloved tiny-cam. It captures 4K video at up to 60 frames per second, all of it rock-steady thanks to the built-in three-axis gimbal. It's kind of like a GoPro married a Steadicam and gave birth to this.

The Pocket 2 has held steady at $349 since it debuted a few months ago; the best price I'm seeing elsewhere right now is $329 at Amazon.

For a limited time, however, Cheapskate readers can save $50 by applying coupon code FEB50CNET when you get to Adorama's checkout page. (It can be challenging to find the field where that goes. Look at the very top of the Payment box for a link that says, "Do you have a gift card or promo code?" Click it, then use the latter field.)

Read more: DJI's Pocket 2 palm-size 4K vlogging cam improves on audio, video for $349

Hisense

I'll be honest: a TV this big can be a challenge. First you need a vehicle that can fit it (unless you opt for delivery, which is free). Then you need a stand or wall-mount that can hold it. And let's not forget a room large enough to comfortably accommodate it: Your couch should be at least 10 feet away.

Challenge accepted? Cool, because huge TVs are awesome! This one runs Android TV, which I think is a great option for those who use Android phones (because familiarity). Among the more notable features: HDR, Google Assistance, DTS Virtual X audio and Bluetooth audio.

CNET hasn't reviewed this Hisense model, but some 600 Best Buy customers collectively rated it 4.6 stars. What you'll probably get here is a very decent picture that's fine for everyday viewing. Indeed, as I discussed with CNET TV guru David Katzmaier in an episode of the Cheapskate Show podcast, not everyone cares about having perfect black levels or local-area dimming. Sometimes, size matters more.

And when you can get this kind of size for this kind of price? Yes, please.

BodyBoss

The BodyBoss consists of a fold-up base that you stand on and resistance bands that you hook to it in various configurations. (The $115 option scores you two bands; I recommend getting the four-band version for just $10 more.)

Using a bar or hand grips, you can perform a variety of exercises: curls, squats, tricep extensions, upright rows and so on. There's also a door anchor that expands the regimen into things like pull-downs and flies.

By the way, resistance equals 1-30 pounds per pair of bands, depending on how you hook them to the base and the exercise you're doing.

CNET hasn't reviewed the BodyBoss, but user ratings around the interwebs are generally very positive. Last time I ran this deal, it was $135 for the four-band version.

This is just a quick reminder that Hoopla Digital is a thing that exists. If you have a library card and your library has a partnership with Hoopla, you can check out a fixed number of ebooks every month.

The service just added the entire Harry Potter series, including the script for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. If you never got around to reading these modern-day classics or you've got kids who are now old enough, here's your means of reading them for free. 

Radioddity

Amazon seller: Radioddity

Price: $26 with promo code 26RADDYRW3

With everything going on in Texas right now, we should all be considering our level of emergency-preparedness. One item that's well worth having, in my humble opinion: an AM/FM/NOAA radio, one that can be powered by hand-cranking in case there's no other option.

This model offers not only that, but also a solar panel and 2,000-mAh rechargeable battery -- the latter able to emergency-charge your phone or another device via USB.

There's an LED flashlight built in and even an "SOS" alarm that can help rescuers find you. Heck, this thing is a Bluetooth speaker, too. Pretty great for the price, I think.

Have a great weekend, cheeps! See you back here on Monday.


CNET's Cheapskate scours the web for great deals on tech products and much more. For the latest deals and updates, follow him on Facebook and Twitter. You can also sign up for deal texts delivered right to your phone. Find more great buys on the CNET Deals page and check out our CNET Coupons page for the latest Walmart discount codeseBay couponsSamsung promo codes and even more from hundreds of other online stores. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Answers live on our FAQ page.

The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health provider regarding any questions you may have about a medical condition or health objectives.

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Amazon just cut $80 off the price of this HP touchscreen Chromebook – CNET

hp-chromebook-x360-12b

This Chromebook can also function as a tablet -- not bad for $280.

HP

After nearly a year of laptop scarcity and high prices, we're finally starting to see more availability and better deals. If you're on the hunt for a K-12-friendly machine, I've got one for you -- though I'm going to restate my fondness for Neverware CloudReady, which can turn just about any old laptop into a capable Chromebook. It's totally free.

But here's a solid deal on a new system: For a limited time, and while supplies last, Amazon has the HP Chromebook X360 for $280, which is $80 off the regular price and one of the best deals on record for this model.

I'll tell you right up front the X360's only real issue: screen resolution. The 12-inch touchscreen display operates at 1,366x912 pixels -- slightly better than most models of this size, but still on the low side.

The thing is, that's not likely to matter for basic schoolwork. And I'd say the pluses far outweigh that minus: The X360 includes 4GB of RAM, 32GB of storage, a 360-degree hinge for that screen (meaning it can work as both laptop and tablet), USB-C and Type-A ports and a battery good for up 13 hours, according to HP.

CNET hasn't reviewed this model, but it scored a 4.6-star average from around 130 Amazon customers. I suspect this would be a good fit for younger students, who will feel perfectly at home at a smaller-ish screen with lower-ish resolution. The touch support is a big win.

Your thoughts?

Read moreOur favorite gear for remote learning

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CNET's Cheapskate scours the web for great deals on tech products and much more. For the latest deals and updates, follow him on Facebook and Twitter. You can also sign up for deal texts delivered right to your phone. Find more great buys on the CNET Deals page and check out our CNET Coupons page for the latest Walmart discount codeseBay couponsSamsung promo codes and even more from hundreds of other online stores. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Answers live on our FAQ page.

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Not going out for Valentine’s Day? Buy these gifts for yourself instead – CNET

Somehow we managed to get a Super Bowl in 2021, but Valentine's Day, well... add it to the list of big annual events that Just Aren't the Same in these pandemic times. You can get creative, sure, but traditional outings -- dinner, the theater, maybe a romantic overnight stay -- are pretty much off the table.

Silver lining: Think of the money you'll save! In fact, if you find yourself flying solo this year, unable to take a special someone out on the town, why not treat yourself instead? Below I've rounded up some great gifts for the most special someone of all: you!

Coffee Gator

It's time to ditch the pods and raise your coffee game. This cute little carafe makes just enough for a single cup (the description says "up to two," but, come on, who drinks five ounces of coffee?).

Just scoop some grounds into the reusable steel filter, pour hot water on top and presto: a way better cuppa joe than anything that ever came out of your Keurig.

Theory11

True to its name, this tabletop game was designed with the single player in mind. That's rather unusual, but it's also kind of a relief: If you're between significant others right now, you can still enjoy an escape room-style experience.

OK, this "room" comes in a box, but it's a box designed by Neil Patrick Harris. And it's really fun, good for at least a couple hours of puzzle-solving.

The Comfy

Look, if you're going to be stuck home alone, you might as well be warm and comfortable, right? Who's going to see you? The Comfy looks pretty silly regardless of who's wearing it, but, dang it, the thing is ridiculously warm and comfortable. I like this version with the quarter-zip neck.

Shelby Brown/CNET

I never expected to like meal kits, but services like HelloFresh have made me a convert. I've not only expanded my food horizons quite a bit (bahn mi bowls, who knew?), but also learned a few things about cooking.

HelloFresh is just one of the available options (see CNET's roundup of the best meal-kit delivery services), and although the minimum order is two meals per week, each with two servings, it's still an affordable alternative to take-out -- and who doesn't like leftovers?

David Carnoy/CNET

When you want to sit and really appreciate a piece of music, you want over-the-ear headphones with big drivers, cushy earcups and active noise canceling to drown out any ambient sound that might be interfering with your appreciation.

The Soundcore Q30 is a ridiculously popular and highly rated headphone (it made CNET's list of the best headphones under $100), offering great sound and lots of features at a very attractive price. It's definitely worth a look if you're looking to treat your ears.

Scott Stein/CNET

I won't shut up about the Oculus Quest. It's just an insanely great VR headset, one that requires no tethering to a PC and delivers wholly amazing immersive experiences. Become the hero of a Star Wars story. Climb virtual mountains. Paint using a 3D canvas. Get fit in simulated boxing classes.

If you splurge on one thing for yourself, make it this. And unlike certain other game systems right now, this is one you can actually get. Read CNET's Oculus Quest 2 review for further convincing.

This article was first published earlier this week. 


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The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health provider regarding any questions you may have about a medical condition or health objectives.

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