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The 11 Biggest Deals of Black Friday 2011 and What Happened to Them

Here's the 411 on some of the best 2011 Black Friday deals and what happened to them. If you were out shopping on Black Friday, you probably missed out on all the exciting and scary hitting of the F5 refresh button, sweating as you queue in a virtual line. So much more stressful than getting pepper-sprayed at Walmart.

Nintendo Wii Bundle Short Black Console, New Super Mario Bros. & Mario Galaxy CD

The deal: $99.99 from BestBuy.com (online only) on Thursday

Why so hot? This is the newest Wii bundle for $50 off the list price of $149.99. The next best deal was Gamestop, who sold it for $149.99 but offered a bonus game (Metroid: Other M, usually $20).

What happened? "Sold out" in a few hours. Now $149.99 everywhere.

Xbox 360 4GB console with Kinect bundle

The deal: $199.99 w/ $50 Gift Card in Walmart stores 10pm Thursday...and $199.99 w/ $50 bonus credit at Amazon 12 noon Friday.

Why so hot? This bundle has a list price of $299.99, where it's sold for many months, with occasional bonus offers. The previous best deal was $299.99 with $100 gift card from Best Buy a few days before Thanksgiving. This Black Friday deal was a $50 better net value than that.

What happened? Sold out at Walmart and Amazon almost instantaneously. Many shoppers still scrambled to buy it when available the rest of Friday for $199.99 with no bonus, because it was such a good price. Check out our play-by-play attempt to get the Amazon deal.

MacBook Air 11.6" MC968LL/A (2011)

The deal: $849.99 from Amazon Thursday, and Best Buy in stores Thursday through Saturday (ongoing?)

Why so hot? Apple Store sells it for $999 and discounted it to $898 on Black Friday.

What happened? Sold out at many Best Buy stores, but was available at $849.99 all Thursday from Amazon. On Friday Amazon raised their price to $898, matching the Apple Store 1-day sale. As of mid-day Saturday Amazon was up to $953 and  Best Buy still had it for $849.99 with availability in a few stores.

Toshiba Thrive 10-inch Android 3.1 Tablet, 8GB

The deal: $199.99 from Newegg on Black Friday

Why so hot? All other retailers sell the unit for around $330 to $370, with Newegg doing a massive sale slash on Black Friday for this Tegra 2 1.0Ghz dual-core Andriod 3.1 Honeycomb tablet.

What happened? The deal went live right at 12:00 AM midnight Black Friday, but sold out within about 20 minutes. Expect some amount of these units to pop up on eBay or Craglist for current street price as people try to flip for a quick (small) profit.

Xbox LIVE 3-month Gold Subscription

The deal: $7.99 from Best Buy online Thursday, in-stores Friday

Why so hot? Usually 3-month cards run $20-$23, and 12-month cards sell for $48.99 on Amazon (with rare 1-day $34.99 specials from Buy.com). At this $7.99 for 3 months rate, it's like getting 12-months for $32.

What happened? Sold out quickly online Thursday, and in stores Friday as soon as Best Buy opened.

250GB Xbox 360 Holiday Bundle with Halo: Reach and Fable III

The deal: $199.99, various retailers

Why so hot? For most of 2011 the 250GB Xbox 360 console with no games cost $299.99, occasionally with bonus offers. This holiday bundle includes two popular games at a $100 price cut.

What happened? Sold out at most stores. The last retailers to have it in stock were Amazon (intermittently Friday afternoon) and Microsoft Store online through late Friday night.  Long story short, if you went to the stores vs online, you had much less chance to score this deal. On Saturday it was completely unavailable online, but an Amazon press release promises to sell some more on Monday.

160GB PS3 Black Friday bundle with Little Big Planet 2 and Ratchet & Clank 4

The deal: $199.99, various retailers

Why so hot? Although the 160GB PS3 slim console recently got a list price drop from $299.99 to $249.99, this was another $50 cheaper and comes with two popular games.

What happened? Sold out quickly at most stores. Sony store had it in stock the latest, with Amazon intermittently putting it back up for sale.

Dell 15.6-inch Inspiron 15 laptop, Core i3, 3GB RAM, 320GB Hard Drive

The deal: $299.99 at Dell Home

Why so hot? This doorbuster laptop deal is about $50-$100 cheaper than your usual 1st gen Core i3 laptop.

What happened? When the laptop went on sale at midnight, it quickly sold out at the $299.99 price point within about FIVE minutes.  Dell immediately switch the price to $349.99, which also soon sold out (an unfortunate thing because at $349.99, it's not that great of a deal).

Canon PowerShot ELPH 300 HS point-and-shoot digital camera

The deal: $149 at various retailers

Why so hot? This year's top-selling Canon point-and-shoot is the "World's thinnest digital camera with 24mm ultra Wide-Angle lens, 5x Optical Zoom, and Optical Image Stabilizer" and has been well-reviewed for its image quality and 1080p HD video capture. It debuted in February 2011 at $229 and sold above $195 until mid-October. Since then the price fell like a rock, all the way to $149 for Thanksgiving week. And many retailers added bonus items, like Amazon's free 4GB SD card and mini-HDMI cable for orders Thursday through Saturday.

What happened? Sold well, but no one sold out, so there are plenty more for shoppers to grab at a good value.

42-inch Sharp LC-42SV49U 1080p LCD HDTV

The deal: $199.99 in Best Buy stores Friday

Why so hot? Before Black Friday, only the very cheapest off-brand 32" HDTVs (like Amazon's #1 bestselling Haier L32D1120 32-inch LCD) sold for as low as $200. So this deal offered 72% more screen real estate, with a well-known brand name. And considering typical 42-inchers usually go for $600 or more (and about $400 at their lowest), the $199 price was irresistible, even if the TV doesn't have cutting-edge features.

What happened? Many people waited in line for hours (days?) to grab Best Buy's doorbusters, and this was the most talked about deal of Black Friday, so you can bet they were gone within minutes.

40-inch Sceptre X405BV-FHD 1080p LCD HDTV

The deal: $330 from Walmart online and in stores

Why so hot? While it's not as attention-grabbing a discount as the $199.99 42-inch Sharp doorbuster at Best Buy, Walmart's $330 asking price for a 40-inch Sceptre X405BV-FHD is a very good deal.  In dollars per display area, it's equivalent to paying just over $211 for a 32-inch TV - not too shabby.  The Sceptre set has 4.2 stars at Walmart after 321 reviews.  Sceptre may not be a household name, but most of their HDTVs are well-reviewed by customers.  NewEgg offered a 32-inch Sceptre at midnight on their site for $188, and that model sold out in a matter of minutes.

What happened? As of Saturday 5pm Eastern, this 40-inch Sceptre at Walmart was still available with free shipping to home or store. A few of our friends bought it on our recommendation, but it wasn't a Black Friday blockbuster because it didn't grab the news headlines like Best Buy's 42-inch Sharp TV for $200.

Were you able to snag any of the deals above? Let us know. Please for the love of Xenu somebody should have got one of the deals above because we need confirmation that our site isn't a complete piece of crap. kthxbai

    Past Editor’s Notes and Discussions

  • Viet DoNov 26, 2011

    The biggest and best 11 deals of Black Friday 2011, what happened to them and why you probably didn't get one. (Don't worry, you're not alone).

  • fpulidoNov 26, 2011

    I was able to grab the $200 Xbox bundle minus the $50 gift card, but I'm still very happy. Checking Amazon closely to see if the PS3 bundle comes back on. No mention of the Asus Transformer tablet? Thought it was a much better deal than the Thrive.

  • Viet DoNov 26, 2011

    holy cow you're right. not sure how I missed the Transformer, it was definitely a better deal (considering its a better tablet all around). I'll add it in the blog post in a bit.

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