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This is a rerun of a deal I first shared back in November. Now it's available at an even lower price, and it'll reach you sooner. Win-win!
If you have even the slightest interest in drones, you're probably lusting after the DJI Mavic Pro. You're also planning to wait until the, er, sky-high price comes down. Because, let's face it, few of us can afford to spend $1,000 on a portable quadcopter.
But can you afford $34? Because although today's deal is no DJI Mavic Pro, it's even more portable and -- dare I say? -- way more fun.
For a limited time, and while supplies last, Gearbest has the JJRC H37 Elfie folding mini drone for $33.92 shipped, the lowest price I've seen on this, my favorite drone of 2016. (Make sure to select the black model and the US-LA warehouse shipping option.) Update: This appears to be sold out, alas, but you'll be glad to know I have another really sweet drone deal coming very soon. And of course I'll continue to watch for more sales on this model.
Update #2: Try Ebay. This seller currently has a handful of Elfies (would that be a great band name or what?) available for $39.99 shipped, and several others are offering it for around $43. Not quite as sweet as $33.92, but still a great, great deal.
I first spied this deal yesterday and I'm glad to see it's still live. That said, I have no idea how much inventory is left or how long this sale price will be active.
Unlike last time, when the only shipping option was from China with a weeks-long wait, your order should arrive within the next 2-3 days.
Having played with the Elfie for the past couple months, let me just say it has no business being this good. It's impossibly lightweight, compact enough to slip into a pocket (thanks to the folding arms) and kind of adorable-looking.
It's controlled with an app, and its built-in camera streams live video to that app. You can grab snapshots or live video (both low-res, so don't expect great images) and both options are made easier by the Elfie's auto-hover capability. There's also a headless-mode option that simplifies steering.
Charging the battery is a pain because it requires you to remove the battery from the underside compartment and then connect it to a special (read: easily lost) USB cable. My advice: Hit up Amazon for a six-pack of extra batteries and a standalone charger, which you can get for around $19.
Interestingly, I've been testing another compact folding drone of similar size and far greater cost: the Dobby, which sells for $400. It has more advanced capabilities, closer to what you get from a Mavic Pro, but it's literally 11 times the price of the Elfie. If all you want is a fun little quadcopter to fly around the house, this is an unbeatable deal.
Bonus deal: Are you driving an older car, one not blessed with Bluetooth -- or at least an auxiliary jack? Consider an FM transmitter, which can send audio from your phone to an unused FM frequency.
Like this one: For a limited time, and while supplies last, Patozon (via Amazon) has the Mpow Bluetooth FM Transmitter (silver) for $15.99, shipped free for Prime subscribers. That's after applying promo code CJ5NOGFI at checkout.
The transmitter plugs into your car's cigarette lighter and its sports a 2.1A USB port for charging your device. It can pair via Bluetooth to your phone or tablet, though there's also an AUX-in jack for non-Bluetooth devices. You can also pop in a microSD card or flash drive and listen to audio stored on either one.
I've had mixed results with products like these; usually it depends on where you live or drive and whether you can find empty FM frequencies. But for $16, it's probably worth a try!
Giveaway! Every year, CNET comes home from CES with a bag of swag. Jealous? Then why not enter for your chance to win it? The CES 2017 swag bag giveaway will reward one lucky reader with nearly a dozen goodies, which have a combined value of $281.
As usual, entering is easy: Just follow the rules outlined on the giveaway page. Good luck!