It can be difficult to hold back when early Black Friday iPad deals are coming out the woodwork, but knowing if you should buy an iPad before Black Friday or if you should wait it out can help you get the best price possible. Gone are the days of iPads refusing to budge on their high MSRPs. We saw the 2021 iPad Pros shaving their prices down just a couple of months after launch last year, and the newly released 9th generation model has already hit the record price low set by the previous iteration. That means there's much more movement in iPad prices these days, so there are plenty of early discounts floating around the web already.
The only Black Friday-esque iPad deals we've seen so far is the 9th generation iPad drop to $299 from $329 in the last couple of weeks (and quickly run out of stock at this price), and the iPad Pro 12.9-inch 256GB model drop to a record low $999 for a brief flash. If these discounts do return, they are likely well worth a look - even if you're buying an iPad before Black Friday proper. We don't expect the latest base model to drop below $299 this Black Friday, and that $999 position on the Pro sits in line with the smaller 128GB device - that means it's unlikely to waver further in the full sale.
When it comes to the iPad Mini 6, iPad Air 4, and 11-inch and 128GB 12.9-inch iPad Pros, though, it's well worth digging into some price history to work out when to buy. All of these iPads have taken a price cut at some point in their lifetimes, but with varying ages and price brackets, we expect different levels of savings in the main Black Friday sales.
We're going through each iPad individually so that you know when to buy an iPad before Black Friday, and when to hold the line. If you're really stretching things out, you can take a look at everything we expect to see in this year's Cyber Monday iPad deals as well.
Should you buy an iPad before Black Friday?
- Yes if: the price drops back to $299
As mentioned above, the 9th generation iPad has already hit the price we had originally predicted for Black Friday in the US. $299 for a 64GB model is an excellent offer, and one that took several months to appear on the previous iteration (and refused to yield to further discounts afterwards). We don't expect the new base model iPad to drop further in November's sales, and if it does then it will likely only be by around $10 and for a very limited amount of time.
If you spot more stock at this price, it's well worth jumping on ahead of official Black Friday discounts. Later sales will be far more competitive, and seeing as stock is already running out with this discount attached the chances of actually landing a tablet in November are slimmer.
In the UK, however, we'd recommend holding out on this one. We see far fewer discounts on the 9th generation iPad across the pond, with that £319 RRP holding steadfast in the weeks since launch. The previous generation only saw very few discounts as well, though retailers like Currys may well be offering bundle discounts later on in the year.
Should you buy an iPad Pro before Black Friday?
- Yes if: the 256GB iPad Pro 12.9-inch returns to $999
There are far more reasons to wait for official Black Friday iPad Pro prices to land compared to the entry level model. That's because these devices have been on the market a lot longer, have a much higher price tag, and the discounts available now still have room to budge.
The only exception to this rule, however, is the 256GB iPad Pro 12.9-inch, mentioned further up. This device dropped to $999 for just a couple of days over the last few weeks, the same price as the 128GB model. We don't expect this discount on this particular model to be beaten later on in the year; it's likely to return once the 128GB sheds some more of its price tag in sales to come. If you're after a little more storage and you spot that discount return, then, it's worth your time.
The 11-inch model's lowest ever price is $699 / £710 (last spotted in August), and the 12.9-inch has never been cheaper than $999 / £949. It would be tempting to jump on these prices should they appear again before Black Friday kicks off officially. If these devices were released in September we would recommend doing so. However, the 2021 iPad Pros launched back in May. That means we could see a little more wiggle room on those prices later in the year. We're expecting $649 (£699) / $949 (£899) prices in November's sales, so if you're looking for the absolute best deal of the year we'd recommend holding out a little longer.
Should you buy an iPad Air before Black Friday?
- Yes if: current record low prices are beaten ($489 / £499)
We would absolutely wait for Black Friday before buying the iPad Air. Earlier in the year we saw a fairly reliable return to a $499 / £499-£529 sales price, but that has since given way to a stubborn $539 / £549 over the last few weeks. This is also the only iPad to be seeing its second sales season this year, after releasing in October 2020. That makes it the oldest device on the current roster, and well primed for some extra discounts in November.
We've predicted Black Friday prices of $479 - $499 / £479 - £499 for this model, though flash sales could be particularly kind to this ageing tablet on the big day itself. That means we would only recommend buying an iPad Air before Black Friday if the current record low is beaten. If you spot a $479 price tag in the US (£479/£489 in the UK) then it might be worth securing a device before the main competition of the sales hits. However, this is definitely one to set up some price alerts for on the day, because limited time discounts could be the big winner here.
Should you buy an iPad Mini 6 before Black Friday?
- Yes if: it returns to $459 OR $479 and you're concerned about stock levels
The iPad Mini 6, despite being the smallest on the market, still carries a significant price tag. Released in September, this is a powerful device packed into a tiny shell which makes it a particularly costly affair. We have seen some early discounts hitting this model in the US, briefly dropping to $459 from the $499 MSRP just after release. However, that's not a price we'd expect to see again until the November sales.
Flash sales in between now and official Black Friday deals could well bring this iPad down by $20, but if you're looking for the best price possible we'd recommend waiting for November.
However, it's worth noting that stock does run low on this new release often. That means it might be unsteady on the shelves in late November. If you're concerned about being one of the first to get to the official sales, a discount down to $479 would still be great value in these early months of the iPad Mini 6's life.
The UK, however, is seeing far more movement on the £479 RRP. There has been a £10 discount available since the end of September, briefly dipping down to £465. We'd recommend holding off buying an iPad Mini before Black Friday, though. There's still plenty of room for this device to drop to £459 or £449 in this year's flash sales.
iPads are some of the best gaming tablets out there, but if you're looking for a more traditional computing experience, we're also rounding up all our expectations for this year's Black Friday laptop deals and Black Friday gaming laptop deals as well. Or, for more Apple devices, check out our predictions for 2021's Black Friday AirPods deals.