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Wireless & Bluetooth Speakers

Get an Alexa-enabled Triby smart kitchen speaker for $79.99

From the Cheapskate: It's like an Amazon Echo designed to hang on your fridge, and it's $20 less than last time! Plus, a super-cheap phone case.

CNET's Cheapskate scours the web for great deals on PCs, phones, gadgets and much more. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Find the answers on our FAQ page. And find more great buys on the CNET Deals page.


Today's deal is a rerun, but in my world reruns mean one awesome thing: a lower price!

Back in 2015, Invoxia rolled out an interesting product called the Triby ($43 at Amazon.com). It's a speaker, speakerphone and message center designed to mount on a fridge, effectively becoming a sort of family hub. It's also highly portable thanks to its rechargeable battery and carrying handle.

triby-red.jpg
Invoxia

But owing to its high price and semi-meh features, I'd sort of written it off. Then, earlier this year, Triby got smart -- like, Amazon Alexa smart. Now the speaker comes close to matching the capabilities of an Echo.

It originally sold for $199.99, but today only, while supplies last, Woot has the Triby for $79.99, plus $5 for shipping. The last time I shared this deal, it was $99.99. Once again the Triby is new, not refurbished, and comes in your choice of three colors.

It looks a bit like a Playskool toy, a nearly all-grill speaker surrounded by a plastic bezel. Strong magnets keep it firmly adhered to your fridge, but the handle allows for easy toting. It has play/pause and volume buttons up top and various shortcut buttons on the front -- the latter flanking a 2.9-inch e-ink screen.

That screen displays not only various status messages, but also custom messages -- text and/or drawings -- sent from the Triby app on your phone or tablet. Gotta say, it's pretty cool.

When a new message arrives, a little yellow flag slides out from the side, accompanied by a musical notification. The screen also flashes a few times while the e-ink updates, reminiscent of early-generation Kindle e-readers. These flashes can get annoying, as they occur every time the screen updates itself -- even for simple things like volume changes.

If you want to learn more about the Triby, check out my hands-on coverage from last year (pre-Alexa), then read Dan Ackerman's coverage of the Alexa update. Bottom line: We both liked this weird little gadget, despite its flaws, but we both found it overpriced.

Today, at $79.99, it's a much more compelling buy. Your thoughts?

Cool trick!

Inateck

Bonus deal: I'm always on the lookout for interesting cases, especially those that can perform extra tricks beyond mere protection. If you're an iPhone 6/6S owner, here's one you may want to check out: the Inateck all-in-one case, car mount and phone stand for $3.99 when you apply promo code H5EJKJ9Z at checkout. That price includes a tempered-glass screen protector as well.

As you can see in the photo, this case has a unique rear piece that curls back to become a kickstand. In theory, it would also slip into an air vent, though I'm not sure what would keep it in place if you went over a bump or took a hard corner. Still, the kickstand feature alone makes this worth $4, in my humble opinion. Just wish they had an iPhone 6 Plus version!

Bonus deal No. 2: If you already own a 4K TV, it probably has built-in apps. Ah, but are they any good? Are they slow or clunky? Perhaps you've longed for your beloved Roku box -- if only it could do 4K! Well, here's one that can: For a limited time, and while supplies last, J.C. Penney has the Roku Premiere+ for $67.49 shipped when you apply coupon code 44BUYNOW at checkout. Update: Because the universe hates me this month, it appears this is already out of stock.

Pro tip: Ebates is currently offering 12 percent rebates on J.C. Penney purchases, so if you start your shopping trip there, your effective (i.e. post-rebate) total will be $59.39! Read CNET's review of the Roku Premiere+ to find out if it's the right Roku for you. (Spoiler alert: it "hits the sweet spot.")