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Black Friday and Cyber Monday 2018 in the US: our deals preview on the biggest sales holiday

23 Sep 2018

Find the best deals and lowest prices on Black Friday and Cyber Monday in 2018 is easier said than done because there are so many good discounts on those days.

We’re here to list the biggest price drops on everything you want to shop for: 4KTVs, new laptops, headphones, cameras, iPhones, and video game consoles like PS4, Xbox One and Nintendo Switch. There’s almost too much on sale to list.

Stores across America – Walmart, Best Buy, Amazon, GameStop, Kmart and so on – are going to offer deep discounts in store and online, so your hard-earned dollar goes a long way during this pivotal holiday weekend.

The date for Black Friday is November 23. It’s always the day after Thanksgiving, and some US retailers start deals early. The date for Cyber Monday November 26, and we often see a spike during this prominent before-Christmas sales event.

We’re going to begin amassing pre-Black Friday deals on this page and be among the first publications to post Black Friday ads of what will be on sale on November 23.

Why start so early? Well, US retailers, earned $7.9 billion on Black Friday last year, according to Adobe Analytics. That’s a nearly 18% increase from the year prior. That doesn’t even account for the 6.6 billion earned on Cyber Monday.

This means we expect even bigger deals for 2018 in the US, and in turn, you’ll need our expertise to suss out the best prices. There are good prices and great prices for a lot of the things you want to buy, especially electronics.

You could walk away with a brand new 4KTV at a supposedly cheap price without our  help, or get the same 4KTV at $100 cheaper with the absolute lowest price with our help. That’s usually how Black Friday and Cyber Monday work. There are often low prices and lowest prices, and we’ll do the digging for you.

When is Black Friday 2018 in the US?

The first thing you may ask is: when is Black Friday? The actual date shifts year-to-year, but it’s always the Friday after Thanksgiving.

This year, Black Friday is November 23, 2018. Of course, retailers begin hours and even days ahead of time with pre-Black Friday deals. We’ll be running those, too.

When is Cyber Monday 2018 in the US?

Cyber Monday is November 26. It’s always the Monday following Black Friday, and one of the best ways to find online deals without the hassle of showing up in a store. It’s one of the biggest days for TechRadar when it comes to referring people to deals.

What’s the difference between Black Friday and Cyber Monday?

The Black Friday vs Cyber Monday debate is an important one. You don’t want to buy something for Black Friday only to have it become cheaper on Cyber Monday.

Or do you? Our best advice is to buy everything you need on Black Friday and keep a watch on additional price drops on Cyber Monday. If it’s all cheaper on Cyber Monday, return your Black Friday item (or cancel it if that option is still available) and walk away with the cheapest price possible.

But, in advance, Black Friday usually offers steep discounts in stores, while Cyber Monday is almost strictly an online sale. Retailers, like Walmart and Amazon are very keen to keep you shopping all weekend long, so they often slowly roll out deals (with ‘rollback prices’ in Walmart’s case) to keep you browsing throughout the Black Friday and Cyber Monday dates.

Why do Black Friday and Cyber Monday matter?

There are two reasons why Black Friday Matters and why Cyber Monday is beginning to matter even more in 2018 than it did a few years ago.

First, Black Friday is when we save up to spend our money on gifts for others (and of course merchandise for ourselves). It’s for good reason: almost everything we want is on sale, thanks to retailers who have an interest in selling us on as much of their products as possible. Best Buy will gladly discount a PS4 console bundle by $100 if you’re going to buy two or three games with it.

Second, it’s when everything comes out. Notice that new GoPro cameras come out right before Black Friday every year and so do new Apple iPhones – the tech product cycle is almost geared toward this invent sales holiday weekend.

It’s more of what you want at the prices you’ve wanted all year. Even better, all of the old versions (so the prior GoPro action camera and year-old iPhone X) will be remarkably cheaper in 2018. You can find the deepest discounts on year-old items.

What sort of deals will we see on Black Friday 2018?

Black Friday prediction are easy to make in 2018 because the sales follow a pattern:

  • Amazon will heavily discount its own stuff
  • Apple will offer something small, such as gift cards or Beats headphones
  • 4KTVs are going to get massive discounts
  • There will be really big price drops on laptops
  • Some accessories will be brilliant value
  • You really don’t want to take out a phone contract in the months leading up: networks’ Black Friday deals slash the up-front and monthly costs
  • DSLRs and mirrorless camera be cheaper and so will lenses 
  • eBay will run Black Friday deals on new products, not just second-hand items

What sort of deals will we see on Cyber Monday 2018?

Like Black Friday, Cyber Monday has become pretty predictable too. You can expect:

  • iPads are routinely on sale, especially at Target and Best Buy
  • Fashion retailers such as ASOS to offer site-wide discounts
  • Electrical retailers to offer deals on small appliances and white goods
  • A continuation of many retailers’ existing Black Friday promotions

The top deals of Black Friday last year

It was hard to find Nintendo Switch last year, never mind find it on sale. But we did manage to exclusively discover some price drops a year ago. That made it an instant top-seller.

We also found the iPhone 7 deal ever, a discount on the iPhone X that chipped away at its $1,000 price, and tempting unlocked Google Pixel 2 and Samsung Galaxy S8 deals.

PS4 and Xbox One bundles continue to be big sellers during Black Friday and Cyber Monday. It seems like every year, as they age (and get better games), retailers are more willing to drop prices on these consoles. That’s win-win for consumers.

Amazon continues to mark down its own products: Kindle, Fire tablets and, of course, Echo speakers see dramatic price cuts. We won’t see these discounts again until Amazon Prime Day 2019.

The top deals of Cyber Monday last year

Listing the best Cyber Monday deals last year started off with cheap iPads. Apple’s iPad Pro is wildly expensive for the average consumer. But on that special Monday date last year, you could get up to $120 off the 10.5-inch and 12.9-inch iPad.

Sonos speakers and the Microsoft Surface Pro 2-in-1 were also big sellers thanks to price cuts. Yes, Apple’s HomePod had just launched and MacBooks do remain very popular, but Sonos and Microsoft have offered better prices (and better value). That was true last year and may remain true in 2018.

What to expect from Black Friday 2018 and Cyber Monday 2018

Expect more pre-Black Friday deals than ever and for Cyber Monday to actually begin on ‘Cyber Sunday’ and even ‘Cyber Weekend’ as Amazon and others like to call it.

US retailers are stretching out the Black Friday-Cyber Monday sales period in an effort to keep you shopping. It’s like a supermarket putting the Milk and the cereal several asiles apart. There are loads of goods in between that will distract you.

But that’s good news because while you may buy a bit more, you’ll do so at far cheaper prices. In 2018, with the US economy on the rebound, shopping during Black Friday may be a bit easier for the American consumer.

Top deals to expect on Black Friday 2018 and Cyber Monday 2018

It’s not Black Friday just yet, but we can tell our deals predictions ahead of November 23. We have a good track record year to year.

New iPad 2018, iPad Pro, and iPhone XS

 Apple’s cheaper New iPad 2018 may be even cheaper several months after it came out. It’s $329 right now, and that could easily be $299 at Walmart, Best Buy or Target, if the retailers are vying for every dollar you have.

An even bigger price drop may come from the iPad Pro. No, not the iPad Pro 2018 that will launch right before Black Friday, but the iPad Pro from mid-2017. Especially on eBay, we see older iPad Pro models get big discounts, and really, they’re almost as good except for a few new features.

Will the iPhone XS be on sale for Black Friday? Yes and no. It just launched, so you may not see dramatic price drops, but expect US carriers like Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile and Sprint to offer incentives for signing up for contracts. A lot of times, they’ll pay you more money for your older phone when you trade it in to buy a new iPhone.

Samsung Galaxy S9

Bad news for Samsung is good news for you on Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Since the Samsung Galaxy S9 didn’t sell well when it launched earlier this year, the company needs to move inventory. That means we fully expect the Samsung Galaxy S9 unlocked to be far cheaper at the end of 2018. That lines up well for the holidays. The Galaxy Note 9 may also see some discounts, but it won’t be as steep.

PS4 and Xbox One

There’s no more Toys R Us anymore, but we expect other US retailers to pick up the slack on PS4 and Xbox One console bundles. They often pair games you were going to buy anyway with the game system at a cheaper price.

Sony’s PS4 has been a particularly hot seller whenever TechRadar posts deals about it. Yes, the Nintendo Switch is popular, too, but gamers find PS4 deals to be even more tempting, and Walmart readily discounts it. In 2018, the PlayStation VR headset may be pushed with the console again, so keep that in mind, especially for Cyber Monday. Games like Spider-Man PS4 and Red Dead Redemption 2 are the ones to watch out for.

Microsoft needs to move more Xbox One consoles to catch up. That’s equally good news for you, since the price could use a drop between now and Black Friday. There are some excellent games on the system as we approach five years with the console,  so you’re in for good prices and great entertainment.

Cheap 4KTVs

If you don’t own a 4KTV yet, then 2018 is the time to buy it because we fully expect, Amazon, Best Buy and Walmart to lead the charge on price drops in this area.

4KTV deals are almost certainly going to be where we see the deepest discounts on any product category. They started out expensive – tens of thousands of dollars – but even new 4K OLED TVs have come down in price. You can even buy a big, smart 4KTV for $500.

Our favorite retailer brand in the US has been TCL. Specifically, the TCL Roku TV 2018 has become a great value for everything it offers: 4K resolution, HDR, at a great screen size at a low price – our top recommendation is $650 for a 55-inch TV.

Amazon Echo, Fire TV sticks, Kindles and Fire tablets

Amazon is smart. It’s offering cheap electronics to gain a wedge into your budding smart home. Amazon Echo with Alexa are a great example of this. Once you get one – with a hard-to-dismiss price of $29.99 for the Echo Dot – you’ll be more inclined to buy something else that’s Alexa-compatible for a higher price.

Amazon’s tablets and ereaders work the same way. Buying into their Fire HD 10 Tablet and Kindle Paperwhite, typically with $40 to $80 discounts, puts you into the Kindle and Amazon Video ecosystem. But that’s okay if you’re a Prime member anyway.

Why is Black Friday called Black Friday?

The first known mention of Black Friday was in November 1951, when the journal Factory Management and Maintenance used it to describe the issue of people calling in sick the day after Thanksgiving so they could have an extra day off work.

At the same time, police in the US were using the phrases ‘Black Friday’ and ‘Black Saturday’ to describe the horrendous traffic jams that occurred at the beginning of the pre-Christmas shopping season. In 1961 some retailers tried to market the day as ‘Big Friday’ instead, but that one didn’t take off.

Why is Cyber Monday called Cyber Monday?

The term was coined by Ellen Davis and Scott Silverman, and it was a deliberate move to promote online shopping back in 2005, when the internet was made of wood and powered by steam.

It was intended to help smaller retailers compete with the big names who were banging on about Black Friday, although of course those big names promptly jumped on the Cyber Monday bandwagon too.

Are Black Friday deals and Cyber Monday deals real?

Oooh, the big question: and  generally speaking, yes they are – although in some cases the discounts have been negotiated well in advance with suppliers, so they’re not as spontaneous as the sellers might have you believe.

As with any sales event you’ll see a mixture of genuine bargains, discounted end-of-line stock and strange things found in the back of a warehouse somewhere. In 2016, consumer magazine ‘Which?’ accused retailers of some pretty dodgy behavior.

If you avoid the slightly-shifty stuff, though, you can get some really great deals. For example, last year we got tons of money off 5K iMacs (end of line stock), Hi-Res audio players (deep discounting in the hope of selling headphones), wireless headphones (from another retailer hoping to sell Hi-Res audio players) and tons of Christmas presents.

And some TechRadar writers were physically restrained from spending all our savings on electric guitars, which were getting some serious discounting on high-end models.

How is TechRadar showing the best Black Friday deals and Cyber Monday deals?

On our Black Friday 2018 deals page and on our Cyber Monday 2018 deals page. We scour all the top retailers’ Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals on your behalf, with the aid of serious amounts of caffeine, and we’ll tell you whether the deals are worth getting excited about. So whether it’s a 4K HDR OLED TV or a PSVR, if it’s discounted we’ll have the details here.

How should I prepare for Black Friday and Cyber Monday?

Homework really helps. Some retailers up prices in October so they can offer supposedly amazing discounts on Black Friday and Cyber Monday, so don’t be fooled by such shenanigans.

They’re particularly prevalent on expensive consumer electronics such as TVs or laptops with product numbers rather than names, with products worth a few hundred pounds apparently having MSRPs of a million jillion dollars. Tools like CamelCamelCamel and PriceSpy can help you detect both shenanigans and tomfoolery.

It’s also a very good idea to be flexible. For example, if you fancy a Samsung UHD TV it’s best to think about the features you want rather than a specific model number – the BRV553ABD34-82C-9218-X may not be discounted on Black Friday 2018, but an almost identical set with the specification you want probably will be.

How can I stay safe on Black Friday and Cyber Monday?

Black Friday and Cyber Monday bring out the fraudsters and fakers as well as the sellers, so be wary of any unsolicited emails or any links to deals being shared on social media, no matter how legitimate they look; as ever with the internet, anything asking you for card details or login details is a scam.

Phishing sites rake in big piles of cash on Black Friday, so be extra suspicious, and if you’re on a PC, make sure your anti-malware software is up to date – many security suites automatically block known scammers, fraudsters and phishers.

What about physical safety? Wasn’t everybody kung fu fighting on Black Friday?

Yes, they were. In fact, it was a little bit frightening. The combination of bargain-crazed shoppers and poor crowd control has long made Black Friday synonymous with injuries and the odd scuffle, and sometimes much more serious trouble – in 2011 a woman pepper-sprayed rival bargain hunters in a California Walmart, while in 2016 a shopper was shot outside a Macy’s in New Jersey.

Cyber Monday didn’t attract the same kind of trouble as it’s always been an internet event, and the more Black Friday moves online the fewer fisticuffs we’re seeing.

Source: Tech Radar