When Prime Day was first announced in 2015, it was swiftly and brutally roasted. No one thought Amazon could get away with making up a holiday. By year two, we at WIRED had changed our tune, and five years later, Prime Day is so big that Amazon makes more money from it than Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
The day has slowly expanded into 48 full hours of deals too. The Prime Day 2020* sale starts on October 13 at 12:01 am PT, and it ends on October 14 at 11:59 pm PT.
As usual, WIRED will cover the discount madness, sifting through the offerings to pull out the best Prime Day deals. We’ll keep a close eye on the inevitable competing sales from the likes of Walmart, Target, and Best Buy too. Below you’ll find our favorite early deals you can shop right now, along with some expert advice to help you keep a cool head once the sales officially start.
We strikethrough deals that sell out or are momentarily unavailable at their discounted price. But deals sometimes return, and items may be restrocked faster than we can update, so it never hurts to check for yourself.
Updated October 12: We added a few new deals, including some from non-Amazon stores, and verified existing discounts.
*If you buy something using links in our stories, we may earn a commission. This helps support our journalism. Learn more.
First, Some Prime Day Tips
Sign Up for Prime: You can’t access the deals without joining Amazon Prime. Nonmembers can sign up for a free 30-day trial. Just be sure to set a reminder to cancel your membership if you aren’t interested in the subsequent $13 per month charges.
Make a List: It’s easy to feel pressured to buy things you don’t need. This year especially, when funds are short for so many of us, avoid falling into that trap by making a list ahead of time. Need a new rug? On the hunt for a specific holiday tech gift? Great! Write down exactly what you’re shopping for so you don’t fall prey to the frenzy. Remember that Prime Day is a kickoff to a season full of discounts. Whatever deals you see will likely be matched, or nearly matched, by Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales on Thanksgiving weekend.
… and Check It Twice: Retailers lie. That “50 percent off” price drop you see may actually be only a few bucks off the normal selling price. That’s why we love Camelcamelcamel, a price tracker that lets you see fluctuations in Amazon’s pricing. It can help you make sure you’re spending your money wisely. We use this tool frequently in our deal hunting here at WIRED. It isn’t always perfect, but the data it shares will definitely come in handy on Prime Day.
Conquer Lightning Deals: Lightning Deals are frustrating. They’re short-lived (far less than a day, usually) discounts on basically everything you can think of. These deals have a limited inventory and sometimes sell out quickly. They’re the easiest way to fall into the trap of spending too much money. Don’t let FOMO win; install the Amazon app on your phone and navigate to Today’s Deals > Upcoming. You can tap “Watch this Deal” on any deal that’s more than 10 minutes away. The app will notify you when the price drop goes live, so you don’t need to worry about missing out. Just remember to track the price and read the reviews before purchasing.
Shop Safely and Smartly: Use common sense when shopping. If a price is too good to be true, you don’t recognize a brand, an item doesn’t have many reviews, or a seller has just joined Amazon, you might want to avoid purchasing. Our articles on shopping safe on Amazon, deciphering star ratings, and what “Amazon’s Choice” means can help you bolster your knowledge.
The Best Early Prime Day Deals
These Prime Day deals are already live. Usually, Prime Day drops Amazon devices down to the best deals we’ll see all year, but keep in mind that Black Friday prices typically come very close. We haven’t seen any noteworthy discounts on Kindle devices, Fire tablets, or Fire TV sticks. Hopefully Amazon surprises us with some when the sale kicks off.
Echo Dot (4th Gen.) 2-Pack for $80 ($20 off): Use coupon code DOT2PK to save. These are the brand-new Echo Dots Amazon just announced. They’ll be released on October 22. They’re louder than previous generations, with a spherical shape and a similar compact footprint. We haven’t tested them yet, but we are pretty confident they’ll be better than the last generation (enough to put them in our Alexa speaker guide).
Echo (4th Gen.) 2-Pack for $170 ($30 off): Use code ECHO2PK to save. These all-new speakers feature a new proprietary chip that makes Alexa faster. They’re also round, and louder than previous generations. They’ll be released on October 22.
Echo Show 5 for $45 ($45 off): This is the best price we’ve seen on the Echo Show 5, Amazon’s smaller smart home display. The same price extends to a version that includes a free one-year subscription to Food Network Kitchen, a service that offers cooking tips and recipes. We reviewed it here.
Echo Auto for $20 ($20 off): Alexa is everywhere within your home, and you probably don’t need it in your car. Disagree? Look no further. We haven’t seen a better deal for Echo Auto before, and this deal includes the option for a free one-year subscription to Amazon Music Unlimited. Just be sure to cancel it before it automatically renews. (You probably don’t need Alexa in your car.)
Echo Dot Kids Edition (3rd Gen.) for $35 ($20 off): This is basically just a colorful version of the hockey puck you’re familiar with. What sets it apart is the free one-year subscription to Amazon Kids+ (formerly known as FreeTime Unlimited). Alexa can read your kids books, play age-appropriate music, and answer questions like “Why is the sky blue?” It also comes with a two-year worry-free guarantee, so if your kid spills juice and breaks the speaker, you’re covered.
Aukey 15,000-mAh USB-C Power Bank for $20 ($10 off): Clip the on-page coupon and enter code LI9BXY22 during checkout to save. A power bank is always nice to have, and the Aukey products we’ve tested have always been reliable. This particular portable charger has enough juice to charge most modern smartphones (including iPhones) four times.
Blink Mini Security Camera for $25 ($10 off): This didn’t make our list of the best indoor security cameras, but it’s a decent option on the cheap. Blink is owned by Amazon, so keep that in mind. As with every home security camera, make sure to turn on two-factor authentication for added privacy protection.
Get a $10 credit for Prime Day when you spend $10 at Whole Foods: Spend $10 in-store or online via Prime Now at Whole Foods between now and October 14, and you’ll get a free $10 credit to redeem on Amazon.com on Prime Day. This makes sense if you plan to go grocery shopping there anyway.
Roku Premiere for $27 ($13 off): This is the best price we’ve seen for this streaming device via Amazon, beating the previous low by two bucks. The Roku Premiere is one step down from what we consider to be the best Roku for most people, but it can handle 4K streaming. Our favorite Roku device, the Streaming Stick+, is also on sale but it isn’t as good of a deal compared to previous discounts.
Six-Month Kindle Unlimited Membership for $30 ($30 off): Kindle Unlimited gets you access to millions of Kindle ebooks for free. The service usually costs $10 per month, which is the rate it will renew at after your membership runs out. You may want to set a reminder on your phone to cancel so you aren’t charged. You can read Kindle books on your phone or computer using the free Kindle app.
4-Month Amazon Music Unlimited Membership for $1 ($31 off): Amazon Music Unlimited is like the store’s version of Spotify or Apple Music. You can stream songs, download them for offline listening, and skip as many tracks as you want without being subjected to pesky ads. Like other services, this one automatically renews for $8 per month, so cancel your membership before the trial ends if you don’t want to pay full price.
Nintendo Switch: Animal Crossing Edition for $299: This is not a discount, but trying to find this edition of the Nintendo Switch in stock at a normal price has been nearly impossible all year. The bundle is also in stock at Walmart, where some third-party sellers are selling it for $600. The game is not included, but Walmart includes a free PopSocket with your purchase.
Amazon isn’t the only store with special savings. Other retailers are throwing in their own sales to compete. Here are a few good early deals, no membership required.
Allswell Hybrid Queen Mattress for $245 ($130 off) at Walmart: This is our favorite cheap mattress. It has a layer of gel-infused memory foam to keep you cool and feels supportive.
Yamaha YAS-109 Soundbar for $200 ($40 off) at Walmart: If you’re watching your TV through its own speakers, it’s time to upgrade to a soundbar. Even without a subwoofer or surround speakers, a soundbar will drastically improve your viewing experience. WIRED writer Parker Hall named this one the best soundbar with a built-in sub, and it has Alexa inside too so you can control it with voice commands.
Here are a couple of special discounts. They aren’t Prime Day deals, but you won’t find them anywhere else.
3 Months of WIRED for $1 ($6 off): Subscribing to WIRED helps support all the hard work and journalism that goes into the site each day. It also gives you unlimited, ad-free access to said journalism. This sale gets you three months of digital access (or digital + the print magazine) for the price of a gas-station cup of coffee. After the initial three months, it will cost $30 for a one-year subscription.
Free Multi-Device Charger with the purchase of a Theragun: If you’re in the market for a Theragun, you can shop through this link and a Multi-Device Wireless Charger will be added to your cart for free. It usually costs $79 and isn’t necessary, but it’s nice to have. Simply place your Theragun down on the pad and it’ll start charging automatically. This deal works with the Pro, Elite, and Prime models. Check out our handy guide to which Theragun device is best for you. This is a WIRED exclusive deal.
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