Or you can buy one iPhone and get an iPhone 8 free. Either way, there are catches. And questions. Plus: a terabyte of portable storage for just $41.
Rick BroidaSenior 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").
Late yesterday I spotted this headline: "These $40 knockoffs look just like Apple's $159
, and they sound almost as good." Of course I was intrigued, so I checked it out.
Guess what? That story, which appeared on what I consider a pretty well-respected site, was straight-up linkbait. Not only did the author not test the product, she didn't mention the 1-star review average from
buyers. So those knockoffs "sound almost as good" according to whom?
All this is simply to say, I will never do that. Whenever possible, I'll test a product first so I can report on the pros and cons. When that's not possible, I'll try to point you to other reviews. And I'll always draw on 30 years of tech-industry experience to provide context, caveats and so on. My goal is, and has always been, to steer you to great deals while helping you make an informed purchase decision.
Today, for example, there's a deal to be had on an
-- but with lots of catches. Take a look.
X marks the drop?
Starting tomorrow, Feb. 23,
is offering a $200 rebate (in the form of a prepaid debit card) when you buy an iPhone X, trade in an eligible phone, finance the X for 24 months and get service while you're at it.
Never mind how weird it is that T-Mo announced this deal a day ahead (who in their right mind will buy an iPhone X from them today?). It's a reflection of reportedly poor iPhone X sales and, I think, a sign that Apple will drop the iPhone X's price in the coming months.
The deal itself is pretty standard fare for anyone who doesn't mind getting into bed with a carrier for two years. Me, I continue to prefer buying a phone outright and then shopping for the cheapest service I can find -- but T-Mo does have its perks.
There's also a BOGO deal: Buy any iPhone (including a 7 or
, weirdly!) and you'll get an
for free. Again, there are trade-in and service requirements. But for anyone in the market for one or two iPhones, these are deals worth considering.
My $0.02: The iPhone X is not worth $1,000. (No phone is, and that includes whatever
bakes into the S9 that's coming this weekend.) Is it worth $800? More in the ballpark, at least. I like the screen size, the bezel-free design and the cameras; I don't like Face ID or the notch. Frankly, I want Apple to quit monkeying with hardware and fix the many, many terrible things about
Anyway, now you have the iPhone-deal news. Let's hear what you think of it.
Bonus deal: Need a big hunk of portable storage? Most 256GB flash drives will run you at least $50. How about four times the storage for $10 less?
It's a compact, USB 3.0 drive that's both Windows- and Mac-compatible. It comes with backup software and a two-year warranty. Assuming you don't need something that's actually flash drive-size, this offers incredible value for your mobile-storage dollar.
Oh, and it has a 4.3-star review average from over 2,500 buyers. (A brand like
, you probably don't have to worry about fake reviews.)