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This 'free' Pixel 7 deal is my impulse buy from Black Friday/Cyber Monday

With a little digging around in the drawer, you can snag a new Google Pixel 7 for close to nothing during Cyber Monday.
Written by Kerry Wan, Senior Reviews Editor
Google Pixel 7 in hand.
June Wan/ZDNET

Black Friday is the perfect time to swap out your old tech for new tech, and that includes smartphones. While, I'll admit, I'm not the biggest self-spender come holiday season, a recent discovery of a Best Buy deal made the latest Google Pixel 7 my impulse purchase this Cyber Monday. 

I should disclaim that while this $100 off deal doesn't actually make the Pixel 7 "free," it's the first of the two-part process that should leave you with a shiny new smartphone for less than the discount itself. Read on.

Also: Know before you buy: Every major retailer's holiday return policy

The way it works is simple: Best Buy is currently offering enhanced trade-in values when purchasing smartphones. That means what is typically valued for, say, $100 can now count as $400 or more. In my case, I dug through my trustee drawer of forgotten electronics to find a dusty iPhone XR. It still holds a charge, is free of cracks, and has been fully paid off since... however long it has been living in the drawer. All three of these qualifications are important if you want to maximize the trade-in value.

With that, Best Buy offered me $460 for the iPhone, bringing the total of the already-discounted Pixel 7 from $499 down to $39. 

Tack on the sales tax and I was presented with a brand-new Google smartphone for relatively nothing. The expedited shipping was free, and you'll get the handset even quicker if you opt for in-store pickup. 

More: 20+ Best Black Friday phone deals

Obviously, a big part of this deal revolves around what phones you have available to trade in. From my perspective, that iPhone was no longer being used, so it made more sense for me to just trade it in for recycling or repurposing in exchange for a more relevant handset. 

The cherry on top is how much of a sleeper pick the standard Pixel 7 is in the grand scheme of best phones this year. With a decent-sized 6.3-inch OLED panel, a 90Hz refresh rate, a flagship-level camera system with its Pixel perks, and Google's latest Tensor G2 chipset at the helm, I challenge you to find a better deal on a 2022 smartphone than this. 

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