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HolidayBuyer's Guide

Get a 7-inch Dell Streak tablet with 4G for $139.99

Of course, that's just the hardware price; T-Mobile's 4G service will cost you extra. Or you can just skip it and stick with Wi-Fi.

The Dell Streak tablet includes optional 3G/4G service from T-Mobile.
The Dell Streak tablet includes optional 3G/4G service from T-Mobile. 1SaleADay

It's amazing how quickly things change in the tech world.

A scant 18 months ago, Dell introduced the 7-inch Streak 4G tablet for the then-competitive price of $199.99 (with a two-year T-Mobile contract -- or $449.99 without one).

Today, and only today, 1SaleADay has the refurbished Dell Streak tablet for $139.99, plus $4.99 for shipping. The 4G capabilities are still there, but the contract requirement isn't -- meaning you're paying $310 less than you would have 18 months ago.

The Streak is quite the powerhouse. Its specs include a dual-core Nvidia Tegra 2 processor, 16GB of internal storage, front- and rear-facing cameras (the latter good for 5-megapixel photos and 720p video), Bluetooth, GPS, and Android 3.0.

Only the screen disappoints (slightly) with its 800x480-pixel resolution. Models like the Kindle Fire and Lenovo IdeaPad A1 have higher pixel counts. Indeed, as CNET noted in its review of the Dell Streak: "Sporting an 800x480-pixel resolution screen with only average viewing angles, the Streak 7 appears dull sitting beside the vibrant, smooth 1,024x600-pixel resolution display on the Galaxy Tab."

Dealbreaker? I don't think so. On a 7-inch tablet, screen resolution isn't quite so critical. Just as smaller HDTVs top out at 720p instead of 1080p, there are only so many pixels you need at that size. (More are better, of course -- I'm just saying I don't think most users will mind, or even notice, the difference.)

Battery life is another complaint, though the review was written when the Streak employed Android 2.2, not 3.0. The update may well have improved its power management, and if you disable battery busters like 4G and GPS, you should see better results.

And, again, we're talking about a $140 tablet; a few shortcomings are to be expected. The flipside is that the Streak offers ample power to run all your favorite apps, and with the benefits of 3G/4G service if you choose to add it. (T-Mobile offers both monthly plans and pay-as-you-go passes.) That's something you won't find in the Kindle Fire, Nook Tablet, or Lenovo IdeaPad.

Like many refurbished products, this one comes with a 90-day warranty. Check out CNET's First Look video below, then hit the comments to share your thoughts.

Bonus deal: In the market for a multifunction? Staples has the Canon Pixma MG4120 all-in-one printer for $59.99 shipped (plus sales tax in most states). It prints, copies, and scans. It features a color LCD, double-sided printing, and 802.11n Wi-Fi. Plus, you can print directly from your Android or iOS device using Canon's free app.

Now Playing: Watch this: Dell Streak 7 (T-Mobile)

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