iPads: Cheap Online Retailers

iPads Cheap Online Retailers

Your cats want their own iPads? Cheap is the way to go. [Image by Hajime Nakano via Flickr]

Sure, you want an iPad. Everybody else has got one. But the thought of paying top dollar for something that your clumsy fingers will drop or your absent mind will leave behind somewhere — when you’re sleep deprived from working too many hours to buy gadgets — doesn’t seem appealing. Luckily, there are a few reputable places online that will allow you to buy iPads cheap. I stress reputable because there are plenty of disreputable places online that will offer you the world for nothing but a smile (and maybe your social security number); if a deal seems too good to be true, it probably is.

The iPad is still in pretty high demand, so you’ll be lucky to get a hundred dollars or so off the recommended retail price of the unit you are looking to purchase. Someone offering iPads cheap for 75% to 50% off may very well be one of the aforementioned disreputable sources, so be careful.

The only real tip I have here for saving substantial money is to go for an iPad that’s a generation or two older than the model currently toted as the latest and greatest. It will be less in demand and sellers will be looking to unload them at a deeper discount.

Here are some of those reputable places where you can go hunting down such iPads. Good luck!

iPads Cheap: Best Buy

Yes, my first suggestion is Best Buy (or similarly well-known electronics retailer local to you). A bricks and mortar store usually has mid-season, Christmas, Black Friday, and other regularly occurring sales, which gives the retailer a chance to clear out some of its older stock. Maybe this older stock just isn’t moving as quickly as anticipated, or there’s just an excess in the warehouse that’s taking up space better utilized for bigger ticket items. And if Apple announces a new generation (which seems to be happening more frequently lately, doesn’t it?), it’s a great opportunity for the consumer to pick up iPads for cheap as the retailer makes way for the shiny new toys that entice the wide-eyed masses into dropping entire paychecks on their procurement. Everybody wins!

iPads Cheap: Amazon

While the going rate for current generation iPads may run a little higher on Amazon than in the official Apple Store, the popular online retailer is a great resource for older generation iPads on the cheap. While perusing Amazon’s offerings from the comfort of LockerGnome World Headquarters, we were able to find a third-generation, 64 GB white iPad for $119 less than it’s offered from Apple, directly. $119 may not seem like a lot to some of you, but wouldn’t it feel better in your pocket than Apple’s?

Apple might not agree, but you’re the one looking for iPads cheap, bub!

iPads Cheap: Apple

Speaking of Apple, shopping for iPads on the cheap doesn’t get any more reputable than going directly to the source. The company offers plenty of older and current generation refurbished units that could pass for brand new — plus you have the comfort of knowing that Apple’s famous customer service will back you up if you do run into any hitches with your iPad not performing up to expectations. This may not be your cheapest option, but it may be the most comfortable if you’re accustomed to having bad luck with your electronics.

iPads Cheap: eBay

As you’ll find if you wind up at a random garage sale in any given community, people sell all sorts of things for all sorts of different reasons. In this way, eBay is sort of like a virtual garage sale, but the consumer has the ability to gauge the seller’s status as a reputable or disreputable source by the feedback of others who have dealt with them in the past. Someone looking to unload a used iPad — perhaps they bought the new one and have no use for their old one — may be willing to let it go for far less than a retail store might. It may not arrive in as pristine of a condition as an Apple-direct refurbished iPad would, but a seller will usually tell you if a unit is “like new” or if it’s endured a few bumps and scrapes along the way that warrants a more reasonable price. Just remember, as we said above: if a deal seems too good to be true, it probably is.

I’m hesitant to end this with the usual “if you know anything I don’t about the subject of iPads cheap, let me know,” only because I’m trying to avoid sorting through spam and might-be-spam that will likely result from such an invitation. That being said, if you know of good places to get iPads cheap and you’re not a spambot or marketing shyster, please let us know in the comments below.

Yes, we know about Craigslist. :)

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Chris has consistently expressed his convictions and visions outright, supplying practical information to targeted audiences: media agencies, business owners, technology consumers, software and hardware professionals, et al. He remains a passionate personality in the tech community-at-large. He's a geek.