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Get a refurbished Kindle Fire HD 8.9 for $179

That's an awfully good price on a big tablet -- but is Barnes & Noble still offering the better deal?

Rick Broida Senior Editor
Rick Broida is the author of numerous books and thousands of reviews, features and blog posts. He writes CNET's popular Cheapskate blog and co-hosts Protocol 1: A Travelers Podcast (about the TV show Travelers). He lives in Michigan, where he previously owned two escape rooms (chronicled in the ebook "I Was a Middle-Aged Zombie").
Rick Broida
2 min read

At this point in the game I'm guessing that everybody who wants a tablet already has a tablet. So why keep posting tablet deals?

Because maybe you're ready to ditch your first-gen model for something newer. Or you've decided to trade up from a 7-inch screen to something larger. Heck, maybe you've decided to repurpose your existing tablet as a photo frame, digital cookbook, Google Chromecast (way cool hack!), or whatever -- and now you need a new primary tablet.

Whatever the case, the deals keep coming, and I'd be remiss if I didn't share them. Today, for example, Amazon is offering the refurbished Kindle Fire HD 8.9 (16GB) for $179 shipped, with the 32GB model going for just $199. Seems like not that long ago, those were the prices for the 7-inch Kindle Fire HD.

With the 8.9, you're getting, well, 8.9 inches. To my thinking that's a much better size for things like Web browsing, magazine reading, movie watching, and game playing. Heck, you could even get a little work done by pairing the Kindle with a Bluetooth keyboard. And if you don't like Amazon's interface and/or ecosystem, you can load Android 4.2 using a simple, automated service.

Although the Fire HD is refurbished, it comes with a one-year warranty. And based on the Kindle refurbs I've seen in the past, it'll arrive looking just like new. The only question is whether to get the 16GB or 32GB model. Given that the Fire HD lacks an expansion slot (boo, hiss), I recommend spending the extra $20.

On the other hand, don't forget Barnes & Noble's 9-inch Nook HD+, which is still selling for $149 (16GB) and $179 (32GB) -- new. It offers Google Play access out of the box and a microSD slot, though it lacks a front camera and relies on B&N's obnoxious proprietary sync/charge connector.

My take: Both deals are awesome. It's buyer's choice. The Nook probably delivers more bang for the buck, but there's much to be said for the Kindle's integrated Amazon Prime ecosystem (assuming you elect to subscribe). Your thoughts?

First Look
Watch this: The Kindle Fire HD 8.9 is the Fire to get

Bonus deal: If your tablet tastes lean toward iPad, here's your chance to score a sweet accessory on the cheap: Today only, and while supplies last, JustDeals has the refurbished Fuji Labs ProFolio BT710 iPad Bluetooth Keyboard for $99.99, plus $5 for shipping. Compatible with all iPad models except the first-gen, this keyboard/cover combo gives your iPad a laptop-style makeover, complete with integrated stereo speakers and a battery that promises to last a full year between charges.

Deals found on The Cheapskate are subject to availability, expiration, and other terms determined by sellers.

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