updated 11:59 pm EDT, Fri July 4, 2014
Electronista and MacNN staff's deal picks for July 4, 2014
Welcome to this week's installment of Friday Deals -- oh, and also America's birthday! Every Friday we're going to take a look at sales, and bring you what we think are some of the best bargains on prime apps, gadgets, and peripherals for you, the discriminating MacNN and Electronista reader. All prices are verified at the time of publication, but any sales may not be valid if you're reading a few days down the line. Check pricing before you click buy!
Parents everywhere will rejoice at the Disney Splash Sale on the iOS App Store, reducing the cost of some of the most popular children's titles by as much as 85 percent. Each one of the following apps are just $1 apiece for a limited time: Cars 2 Storybook Deluxe, Disney Princess Royal Salon, Doc McStuffins Paint and Play, Frozen: Storybook Deluxe, Mickey Mouse Clubhouse: Mickey's Wildlife Count Along, Planes: Storybook Deluxe, Princess Dress-Up: My Sticker Book, Sofia the First: The Floating Palace, Star Wars Journeys: The Phantom Menace, and Tangled: Storybook Deluxe, among others. Buyers should be aware that the Storybook titles are very large, in the neighborhood of 1GB each. Versions of almost all the titles are also available for iPad.
Classic time-management game Diner Dash Deluxe is now just $1 (half off), while one of the spin-offs -- Diner Dash: Grilling Green Deluxe for iPad -- has gone free (normally $3). If you already own the free Expedia app, you can visit the Media Lounge section to receive the game Rayman Fiesta Run for free (currently $3 on the App Store).
For those needing something a teensy bit more bloodthirsty, the Infinity Blade franchise is also on sale for half price on the App Store for iPad or iPhone. This means the original Infinity Blade is now just $1, Infinity Blade II is going for $2, and the latest entry --Infinity Blade III -- is yours for just $3. For gamers with an Apple TV, the game Motion Tennis for Apple TV throws the action up on the big screen and lets players utilize their iPhones or iPod touch devices as the racquet (a tether or other way to secure the device to your hand is recommended). The game, normally priced at $8, is now free to download.
For non-franchise games, Adult Swim's Castle Doombad has dropped from $3 to $1 for a limited time, and Boost 2 has been cut from $2 to free. For console gamers, Mario Kart 8 for the Wii U is down to $45, the lowest price we've seen. Speaking of consoles, Best Buy is wheeling and dealing on Nintendo 3DS games, and Groupon has a US coupon code for a Kinect-less Xbox One for $360 (normally $400) using 4JULY10. Alternatively, there is an Xbox One with Titanfall and the Kinect for $440 available.
The diary app Day One for iOS has gone free for the first time in over a year, and the Mac version of the diary app has dropped from $10 to $7. SketchBook Mobile for iPhone is down to $1 (normally $2), while SketchBook Pro for iPad has taken 20 percent off to sell for $4, and SketchBook Ink has dropped from $5 to $3. The Mac version, SketchBook Pro 6, is on sale for $39 (down from $60). The well-regarded Disk Diag for Mac has dropped to $1 (normally $3).
We should also mention the excellent Screens VNC, which is now just $10, 50 percent off its normal price. As the name implies, the app lets you access your Mac from your iPhone or iPad.
Staples is selling the 500GB Toshiba Canvio portable USB 3.0 hard drive for $40 (regularly $65), and Daily Steals is offering a refurbished 20-inch iMac with a 2.0Ghz Intel Core 2 Duo Processor, 4GB Ram, 250GB Hard Drive, DVD-RW Optical Drive, iHome Wireless Keyboard and Mouse and Mac OSX 10.9 Mavericks for $499 (normal retail for this model was $1,199).
Best Buy is discounting current-model iMacs, taking $120 off the price (and $150 more for buyers with a .edu email)
Finally, for anyone who's been wanting to get a real Digital SLR but been put off by the price: Canon (through Amazon) is offering the Canon EOS Rebel T3, a 12.2MP CMOS Digital SLR with 18-55mm IS II Lens in black for $300, 33 percent off its normal $450 price. This is one of the cheapest DSLR offers we've seen, and a solid choice for a first DSLR due to its compatibility with a wide range of Canon lenses. Because its a direct offer from the manufacturer, its not eligible for Prime shipping.