How to get the best deal on a new smart TV
You might think buying a new smart TV is a big purchase that can take some saving up -- but it doesn't have to be. In fact, TV prices are more reasonable than ever. If you're just beginning your search, you may already be scouring the online marketplace for good deals or coupons -- and no doubt are feeling overwhelmed by the options. Whether you're looking to haggle with retailers or jump on a one-time sale, we've discovered a few methods for easily finding great deals on smart TVs, online and in stores.
Smart TVs have more features -- and come at lower prices
For those who haven't gone TV shopping in a while, a smart TV is one that is connected to the internet, allowing you to stream movies and shows (from services such as Netflix and Hulu), use apps, play games, and browse the internet. This can make it the entertainment center of your living room and eliminate the need for a streaming box.
Over the past decade, smart TVs have come a long way and are now packed with features, all while prices are generally falling. Manufacturers are vying for the attention of consumers by offering lower and lower prices on TVs with 4K and UHD displays, and there is a wide array of smart TVs in all sizes, from the most basic to models with tons of features. Even basic smart TVs include a decent handful of apps and streaming options as a result. With a variety of features, screen sizes, and resolutions to choose from, it's a good time to upgrade your TV if you aren't satisfied with the one you currently own.
1. Haggling through Greentoe
Greentoe is a website and app that allows you to name your price on a smart TV -- and many other home goods and electronics. Each product page lists the lowest online price and average price. In the "Name your price" section you will see a meter showing your chance of success. Once you have made an offer, it will be sent to retailers partnered with Greentoe. If anyone accepts your price, you've scored a deal.
There's no catch, but there are a few things to keep in mind if you use Greentoe.
First, your offer must be reasonable for a retailer to accept it. However, there's no penalty for naming a low price. Your bid will simply time out after two to seven days, and you can select how long you would like your offer to be active.
Second, offers cannot be cancelled. Since you must enter shipping and payment information when you make an offer, if a retailer accepts it, you are locked in. This prevents users from gaming the system and making increasingly low bids. So name your price wisely and be prepared to follow through. There is no way to know which retailer will accept your offer beforehand. Only when an offer is accepted can you find out who will be selling you the product.
So, what will you find on Greentoe? For a bright, colorful, and clear display, the versatile Samsung Q9FN 65" QLED TV is a first-rate choice for your living room or home theater. Or if you're on a budget but are still looking for a large 4K smart TV, the TLC 64" 4K Ultra HD Smart Roku LED TV is hard to beat. Its price is already lower than most of the competition, and on Greentoe, who knows how much you could save?
2. Saving on Amazon
Another trusted source for deals on smart TVs is Amazon, which matches sales-prices available in brick-and-mortar stores and on other online retailers. Since most brands have unilateral pricing policies, if an item is on sale on Amazon, it's also on sale at all authorized retailers for the same price. However, buying online is convenient and saves you the effort of fighting crowds at the store -- plus it usually gets delivered to your doorstep for free.
If you're wary of purchasing a big-ticket item through an online retailer, consider requiring a signature for your package. You can also opt for installation assistance through Amazon, though this service is not available in all areas.
One of our top choices from Amazon is the Toshiba 32-inch 720p HD Smart TV, which connects to Amazon's Fire TV service -- a service that combines a typical over-the-air experience with streaming options -- making this is an affordable option if 4K or UHD capabilities aren't priorities for you.
3. Smart TV deals at Costco
If you want the satisfaction -- and security -- of taking a TV home on the same day you purchase it, Costco typically has deals equivalent to or better than those on Amazon and other online retailers. In addition, they have an excellent return policy that is easier to deal with than that of most online retailers. For Costco members, this is a great place to start -- and possibly end -- your search for a smart TV. If you're looking for a large edge-to-edge TV for your home theater, the Vizio 75" Class 4K HDR LED LCD TV is a solid choice from Costco. Most stores carry a considerable supply of inventory, so if you find it online, it's likely it's available at your local warehouse.
4. Shopping at other brick-and-mortar stores
There may be great deals to be had at Best Buy or your local electronics store as well. While Best Buy will price-match online retailers, your local electronics store may not be an authorized retailer for some TV brands, meaning you could get a deal for even less than Amazon or Costco. However, this may mean the manufacturer will not honor the warranty. Brick-and-mortar stores need to offer steep deals to compete with online retailers -- and taking advantage of this can help you save when shopping for a smart TV.
Peter McPherson is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money. BestReviews never accepts free products from manufacturers and purchases every product it reviews with its own funds.
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