Now the big guns are finally being unleashed for Black Friday ad leaks. After Target's ad surfaced online, Walmart has rolled its specials out (as has Best Buy, which will be covered in a subsequent post), and while it doesn't have a ton of computer deals, it's still the 700-pound gorilla in the room with the sales it does offer.
Target tried to stand out with a $100 gift card offer with the purchase of the new iPad Air during Black Friday, but Walmart has chosen to focus on the first-generation iPad mini. Like Target, it is offering a store gift card when you buy a iPad mini (not the new Retina-display one, however), but Walmart is providing a $100 gift card instead of the $75 one Target is giving. The bad news is that Walmart is only makng this deal available at 6 p.m. on Thanksgiving for one hour with a guarantee that buyers will receive the product. (If the store runs out of stock, Walmart says impacted customers will receive their item "before Christmas.")
The same holds for the "one-hour guarantee" laptop special Walmart is rolling out at 6 p.m. on Thanksgiving: an HP Pavilion TouchSmart 14-B109WM for $278. This appears to be the version the retailer is currently selling for $398, and includes an Intel Celeron B877 processor, 4GB of RAM, 500GB hard drive, and 14-inch touchscreen. You can spend even less on the HP 2000-2d09WM notebook, which has a bigger screen (15.6-inch) -- though without touchscreen capabilities -- and an AMD E-300 processor, but only will cost $178 (or $140 less than the regular price).
Rounding out Walmart's Black Friday laptop specials, the HP Pavilion 15-B129WM is available for $388, or $60 off the current price. It features a 15.6-inch touchscreen, AMD A6-4455M processor, 4GB of RAM, and 500GB hard drive. Only one desktop sale is listed in Walmart's ad: The HP 20-B323W all-in-one PC, which comes with an AMD E1-1500 processor, 4GB of RAM, 500GB hard drive, and wireless keyboard and mouse, but lacks touchscreen functionality. It will sell for $348, or $101 off its current $449 price.
In addition to the usual ultra-cheap Android tablet deals the company likes to trot out at turkey time (for example, a $49 7-inch RCA slate at the 8 p.m. Thanksgiving one-hour guarantee event), Walmart has a couple of other notable tablets specials. Starting at an undisclosed time on Thanksgiving morning, you'll be able to purchase an iPad 2 with a Bluetooth speaker and accessory kit for $349 through Walmart.com. And like OfficeMax, Walmart will be offering the Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 10.1-inch tablet for $299, or $60 less than Samsung is presently selling it for on its own site.
After witnessing year after year of mob scenes when the doors to its locations have opened for Black Friday shopping, Walmart has finally wised up and decided to give out wristbands in advance of its one-hour guarantee events and for certain hot items (like the new Microsoft Xbox One and Sony PlayStation 4 video game consoles). Is that modicum of sanity enough to get you to venture out to Walmart on Thanksgiving or Black Friday for some of these deals? Let us know in the Talkback section below.