Remember when a Kindle was a big, bulky thing that cost $399, and you couldn't even get one? That was a scant six years ago. It's amazing the difference a few years can make.
To wit: In a move that will undoubtedly satisfy legions of near-last-minute gift shoppers, Amazon just served up the Kindle deal of the year.
Today only, and while supplies last, you can get the Kindle with Special Offers e-reader for $49 shipped. That's a $20 savings and the lowest price ever on a new Kindle direct from Amazon.
Make no mistake, this is the entry-level model. It relies on physical buttons (horrors!) for page turning and menu navigation, and its 6-inch display, while impressively sharp and glare-free, offers no illumination like with the Kindle Paperwhite.
On the other hand, it does include Special Offers, which I've come to consider a plus. Along with everyday ads, Amazon occasionally slips in a deal (or even freebie) you won't find anywhere else.
CNET called this an "excellent no-frills e-ink reader," while Amazon customers collectively rated it 4.4 stars out of 5. And that was at the $69 price point.
Needless to say, this would make a great gift for anyone who hasn't yet tried an e-reader. And even with the free shipping option, you should be able to get it in time for Christmas. (Amazon Prime subscribers definitely will.)
Bonus deal: I'm bummed because this was $10 less last night, but it's still a really terrific deal: For a limited time, and while supplies last, Walmart has the Sceptre X322BV-HDR 32-inch HDTV for $179 shipped (or with free site-to-store shipping) plus tax. It features a 720p display resolution and three HDMI inputs. Oh, and Ebates currently offers 3 percent back on Walmart purchases, so you can get roughly another $5 off.
Bonus deal No. 2: Did you know Skype allows for group calling? Maybe, but did you also know you can get a year of Skype group video calls for free? It's true. Free group calls, free group screen-sharing, free live support, and no ads. It's aimed at business users, but no doubt you could use it for personal stuff as well. A group consists of 3-10 people.
Deals found on The Cheapskate are subject to availability, expiration, and other terms determined by sellers.
Want to know more about The Cheapskate blog and how it works? Read our FAQ.