Over the weekend, HP (s hpq) was clearing out stock of its discontinued TouchPad for $99, or $400 off the original sticker price. That was definitely a deal, but here’s one that’s arguably better: Apple is now selling the refurbished first generation iPad (s aapl) for as little as $299, according to MacRumors. Even though it’s more expensive than the clearance TouchPad (if you can even find one available anywhere), the iPad has the advantage of still being supported by the company that created it, and the backing of the largest, most robust developer community of any tablet.
Apple lowered the price of its refurbished original model iPads by $100 over the weekend, and all of these models get a brand new battery and outer shell before being resold, so you won’t be able to tell it isn’t a new device. Having purchased many refurbed Apple goods over the years I can tell you the quality of these products is usually indistinguishable from new. Prices for the refurbished iPads now range from $299 to $599, with each Wi-Fi model getting an additional $100 off their existing discounts, and Wi-Fi + 3G models knocking off $130 from the price of each.
Stock is bound to be limited, and there’s no telling how long Apple will be offering these prices. As of this writing, all storage capacity and connectivity options are still available.
At this price, I’m considering picking up a basic model 16 GB refurbished model as a dedicated development and testing device for my personal projects. Anyone else think this is too tempting to pass up?