Father's Day is this coming Sunday, which means you have less than a week to score a last-minute gift for dad. To help you find the perfect present (and save money), we've found the best Father's Day sales from retailers like Home Depot, Lowe's, and Best Buy. You'll find record-low prices on everything from grills, lawnmowers, and appliances to TVs, headphones, and smart home devices.
Make sure to bookmark this page as we'll be continuously updating it with all the best Father's Day deals leading up to dad's big day. You can also see our roundup of Father's Day Gift ideas, which include the 10 best gifts for tech-savvy dads.
The best Father's Day sales 2020:
Amazon– save on a large selection of gifts for dad
The end-of-financial-year sale is one of the biggest shopping events in Australia, with a wide range of products discounted quite steeply, including cars, household appliances and, of course consumer electronics.
Shopping during Australia’s end-of-financial-year sales means you’ll be able to get your finances in order before filing your tax paperwork as a lot of the discounted items will be tax deductible. So not only will you save some cash on the purchase, you’ll also be able to pocket some extra savings in the form of your tax returns.
And while lockdown restrictions are slowly being lifted, it’s still a very good idea to shop online. After all, you’ll be able to stay off your feet and shop from the comfort of your own home, and you’ll have more time and energy to trawl through various online storefronts for the best offers. Or, you could let us do the hard work.
TechRadar’s Australian team is on hand to sift the chaff and find the best bargains on electronics over the entire month of June. We’ll list them all right here and keep this page updated with new offers as and when they’re made available. There is a strong possibility that a lot of the EOFY sales will end before June 30, so you will need to be quick to snag a great deal.
Unlike the calendar year, Australia’s end of financial year is June 30. That means, from July 1 to the end of October, individuals and businesses will need to file their tax forms with the Australian Taxation Office (ATO). Prior to that retailers will be racing to shift old stock to make way for fresh ones, and they’ll be slashing prices on plenty of items, many of which will be tax deductible.
Australia’s EOFY sales traditionally begin June 1 and end on June 30, although many retailers tend to jump the gun, offering a few tempting morsels to lure shoppers in. However, the best EOFY offers are during the month of June, although not all retailers have month-long sales. Moreover, the offers also change through the month, so you will need to keep checking back to see if whatever you need is being discounted or not.
Australia's EOFY 2020 sale: what to expect
If you’re looking to save some money on electronics during Australia’s annual EOFY sale, you’ve come to the right place. We’ve had our finger on the pulse of tax-time deals for a few years now and can safely predict what you can get for a cheaper price.
So, what kind of tech can you find during EOFY sales Down Under? Plenty. From computers to gaming gear, the best flagship smartphones to personal audio. To get an idea of what to expect in 2020, let's take a look at what was on offer last year.
Laptops and PCs: Computing gear has always been some of the most popular items to purchase during EOFY. Manufacturers like Microsoft, Lenovo, Dell and HP will host their own sales on their sites, but you’ll also be able to grab laptops and desktop PCs from major retailers as well, with average discounts of about 15% to 20%. You’ll even be able to snag bargains on accessories as well, with printers, keyboards, SSDs and external hard drives all going on sale during this time.
From Nintendo to Sony and Microsoft – there were plenty of deep discounts on gaming gear last year and we’re expecting to see more of the same again in 2020. The best price we saw on the Switch during EOFY 2019 was AU$ 379, which isn’t quite as low as it’s gone during other big sales like Black Friday, but it’s still a darn good price. There’ll also be some blockbuster gaming titles available for cheap, if you’d like to expand your gaming library, but keep an eye out for console bundles.
Smartphones and tablets
While there’s usually not a lot of variety when it comes to smartphone discounts, there are always some very intriguing offers to consider during EOFY if you’re looking to upgrade your handset. Last year saw some great discounts on Samsung’s flagships, as well as the Google Pixel 3, so if you’re an Android user, you may be able to score a new phone without having to pay full retail price.
It’s also a great time to see if you need a tablet as well, as more often than not they too are tax deductible if you use them for work.
Home entertainment and personal audio
There were plenty of TVs, sound bars and speakers on sale during the last couple of EOFY sales, and we don't expect that trend to change any time soon. And with some excellent 4K UHD smart TVs already seeing price drops outside of big sales, we're looking forward to seeing how much more affordable they'll be during the 2020 tax-time sale.
It's not just home entertainment setups that you'll be able to save on but portable Bluetooth speakers and the best wireless headphones as well. The premium audio products retail for about AU$ 500 a pop, but there's a good chance you'll see them drop well below the AU$ 400 mark. While discounted prices may not match Black Friday offers, tax-time deals still see a decent chunk of change saved on premium products.
The EOFY sales are also a great time for photographers – beginners, pros or hobbyists – to grab the latest gear. Last year saw plenty of cameras go on sale, particularly from Fujifilm and Nikon. In 2018, we saw action cameras also drop in price, so keep your eyes peeled for some excellent bargains on DSLRs, compacts and more. If you’re happy with the camera body you already own but need some accessories, we’re also expecting lenses, tripods, filters, bags and SD cards to see some decent price drops as well.
Smart home devices
These nifty voice-activated products have been flooding the market – from internet-connected lights to smart security systems, and the speakers and displays to control them all. Amazon discounted its Echo range of smart speakers last year and we're quite sure that will happen again, along with the other smart devices the e-commerce giant stocks, such as Philips Hue smart lights. You'll also find plenty of retailers offering discounts on Google's range of smart speakers as well.
If you’re looking to renovate your home, the EOFY sales will help you save plenty on the new appliances you’ll need. You can expect to see bargains on not just Dyson vacuum cleaners, but also fridges, dishwashers, washing machines and plenty more.
The TCL 10 Pro isn’t the best smartphone in the world – and in fact, it didn’t even break into our main list of the top 15 phones you can buy right now – but nevertheless, I'm excited to see it on virtual shop shelves.
The TCL 10 Pro received three stars out of five from TechRadar, and we called it “not a bad phone” with a further (and more damning) clarification that “you can get so much more for the money, whether you’re minded towards Android or iOS.”
For clarity, I didn’t review the TCL 10 Pro for TechRadar so I haven’t used the handset extensively, but I’m excited because this phone shows there’s still space for new entrants in the mobile market.
Welcome to a new contender
That quote from our review is quite damning, right? But that doesn't mean we want TCL to give up. In fact, I want TCL to see that criticism (and it’s not just us, a lot of our rival tech publications seem to agree with our review of the phone) and run further with a sequel.
TCL entering the phone game with its own branding is an exciting move. Previously, the company has produced handsets through its sub brands of Alcatel and BlackBerry, both of which catered to a very different niche than TCL is trying to target with the 10 Pro.
BlackBerry handsets under TCL haven't thrived, but they've consistently offered a business-focused experience that you can't really get anywhere else. Alcatel on the other hand has been consistently producing some of the best affordable phones on the market.
With the TCL brand becoming more and more recognized in the TV market, it makes sense for the company to apply the name – and the methodology associated with it – to smartphones too.
That methodology involves offering a quality product, but making some necessary cuts to ensure it comes in at an affordable price, which is what it has tried to do with the TCL 10 Pro.
And while the TCL 10 Pro isn't entirely successful, with the experience of making that phone behind it, whatever comes next from TCL may be a true contender for the very best mid-range phone that money can buy.
No matter what, we now have another major manufacturer with a lot of money behind it – along with experience in the consumer tech market – going full throttle and developing 5G handsets for the mid-range mobile phone space.
That's exciting, and while I won't be recommending the TCL 10 Pro itself to people, I'm excited to see what the company is capable of doing next.
Christine Vanderpool is the VP of IT security and the chief information security officer for Florida Crystals Corporation and ASR Group.. When she started, there was no defined cyber security strategy…
It's no wonder that VPNs are so popular in China – while the 'Great Firewall of China' is starting to look less imposing than it once was, there's still massive blocking in place for residents of (and visitors to) China.
Yep, the the aggressive state blocking of certain websites by the China government has eased somewhat in recent months. But if you've had to travel to the country in the last few years – either for work or leisure – you'll be well aware of how tight the state continues to keeps its internet – and now it's threatening to residents of Hong Kong, too. That's why getting the best VPN has become invaluable for residents and visitors to obtain access to restricted online content.
The use of a Virtual Private Network has become a more and more commonly used method for expats and those in academic circles in China to get around the state's very strict policies regarding online content. So if you're looking to access a restricted website then downloading a VPN in China is a solid solution.
Of course the country isn't happy about the use of VPN software, enacting a ban last year – although it remains unclear how (or indeed, whether) users will be punished for using an ‘unauthorized’ software. But many VPN providers are continuing to sell to people within China and we’ve picked out five top-notch efforts for your use.
ExpressVPN is one of the most popular VPNs in China, and it’s a go-to provider for many because it deftly navigates around the Great Firewall. Express' wide array of server locations is a big plus, with Hong Kong, Taiwan and Japan-based servers being especially relevant in this case.
ExpressVPN offers consistent and reliable performance, with smart dedicated apps for most devices including routers. For any trouble that might occur, there’s round-the-clock live chat and email support available from China (the website is not blocked).
This provider actively monitors its network for China accessibility and ensures that its software stays ahead of the censors’ efforts to block connections. Under the hood, ExpressVPN uses obfuscation protocols and advanced technology to provide the best possible experience for users in China.
The 30-day money-back guarantee at least gives you some fall-back, and the year-long plan provides the best value for money. The packages available are:
NordVPN has dedicated an entire team to the pursuit of getting around website blocking in countries like Saudi Arabia, Iran and, yes, China. It actively monitors connectivity and then works to carry out any necessary actions to bypass any new blocks.
It's that kind of commitment to bypassing the Great Firewall that makes Nord such an attractive option. It has obfuscated servers in nearby territories such as Japan and Hong Kong, with its Double VPN feature for further anonymity still available in Taiwan. Those local servers should mean more stability and speed when you're logging in from China.
Live chat support isn't as available as with some other VPNs, but query submissions online are answered pretty quickly. Handy if you run in to any problems. And if you're still a bit unsure about whether NordVPN is right for you, there's a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Largely thanks to its great value price points and user-friendly interface, British Virgin Islands-based Surfshark has really risen up our rankings of late. And it has certainly improved its Firewall of China fighting credentials, too.
Like any good VPN these days, Surfshark has loads of servers – over 1,000, in fact – making it a great choice for making a location change to an IP address somewhere else on the world. And if that sounds like something that would be complicated to do, fear not…Surfshark is among the best around for keeping things simple and straightforward, with easy-to-follow buttons ans instructions like its 'Quick connect' function.
If privacy and security while in China are your major concerns, then Surfshark lives up to that requirement, too. It includes OpenVPN UDP and TCP, IKEv2 security protocols, AES-256 encryption, and a kill switch in place in case your connection fails. There's also a private DNS and a double VPN hop for additional security.
Despite the low pricing, Surfshark makes its service available to unlimited simultaneously connected devices. Very impressive value.
One of the main advantages of VyprVPN is its proprietary Chameleon security protocol which can help bypass VPN blocking, scrambling OpenVPN packet metadata to ensure it’s safe from the tendrils of deep packet inspection.
VyprVPN is a tier-1 VPN network, which means the outfit owns all of its servers. There are enough of them to ensure good performance (14 are located in Asia), along with solid support for mobile operating systems, and 24/7 live chat for troubleshooting.
The much-praised Chameleon protocol is excluded from the basic plan, which offers three simultaneous connections. On top of that, it is expensive, and there is no refund, but you do have a 30-day money back guarantee. Despite the cost, what’s on offer here could well be worth paying for – your best bet is the annual Premium plan to make sure you get the benefit from Chameleon, and save the most money. The packages available are:
In VPN circles, Hotspot Shield is probably best known for its market-leading free version. But it's clearly been putting in the hard yards to improve its premium version, too, and it has managed to get around all the blocking attempts in China.
It may sound like something out of an 80s action film, but Hotspot's 'Catapult Hydra' protocol is one of its MVP features and helps the service perform at an extraordinary speed – even when we tested some of the farthest out server locations. Handy if you're in China but are looking to connect back to the US, UK or pretty much anywhere else it has a server location.
How to choose the best VPN for China
Dealing with this level of censorship of the net is far from easy, but some VPNs are willing to tackle the problem, having proven methods of maintaining uptime in a difficult online climate. Obviously you need to look for a capable provider in this respect, and pick out a reliable VPN, too.
Choosing one with high quality customer support is also important, for when downtime does rear its ugly head. And obviously the number and range of available servers (particularly those in Asia) will help you obtain a better, faster connection. Tight security and privacy is, as ever, a primary consideration as well.
Note: China’s official ban on VPNs came into effect on March 31 2018, but at the time of writing, we haven’t received notice from any VPN providers acknowledging that their offerings will be affected.
Want something without paying? These are the best free VPNs (although they may not work in China)
Memorial Day 2020 is almost here, and Best Buy is kicking things off with incredible deals throughout its site. Best Buy's Memorial Day sale includes price cuts on best-selling TVs, laptops, headphones, appliances, and so much more.
We were impressed with the Ulefone Armor 7 rugged smartphone when we reviewed the device earlier this year. Now, Ulefone has released a new and cheaper iteration: the Ulefone Armor 7E.
The discount version of Ulefone’s flagship rugged smartphone is available for an attractive $ 229.99 (£188.60/AU$ 370.29) from online retailer Gearbest – that's more than $ 100 less than the original model.
The unit ships for free to the US, UK, Australia and dozens of other territories worldwide, but it's worth noting the price of the system could change in line with exchange rate fluctuations.
There are only two main differences between the Armor 7 and Armor 7E: the latter has half the memory and inferior camera sensors.
All other components found in the original are still present, including a Mediatek P90 CPU with 128GB storage, 6.3-inch FHD+ display, 48-megapixel rear Samsung camera, 16-megapixel front camera and 5500mAh battery.
Other features include 802.11ac Wi-FI, Bluetooth, dual nano SIM card with microSD slot, Bluetooth 5.0, NFC, IP68, wireless charging, heart rate sensor and MIL-STD-810G certification.
Rivals such as the Oukitel WP6 and Doogee S68 Pro may have more memory or a larger battery, but the Armor 7E provides greater balance thanks to a superior processor and overall feature set.
There are plenty of good-looking OLED TVs around these days, and few look better than those put out by LG. The South Korean TV maker has put an immense amount of thought into its premium OLED range, nowhere more so than with the LG E Series OLED – even if it was sadly discontinued this year.
2019’s LG E9 OLED was a masterclass in panel design, offering a glass display that banished the bezel and almost appeared to be floating up from the counter – offering a truly breathtaking visual experience. More than anything else, it looked different from any other TV put out that year.
The E9 didn’t quite make the cut for 2020, though, with the new Gallery Series GX model replacing the E Series line instead. While it presumably made business sense for LG to cut the E Series – which doesn’t seem to have received nearly the amount of media attention as the cheaper (and equivalently specced) C9 OLED, or the more affordable B9 OLED at the bottom of LG’s 2019 OLED range – it’s a loss nonetheless.
We were disappointed not to see an EX model unveiled at CES 2020 along with the other new LG TVs being shown off, and were told simply that the E Series was no longer being pursued.
Neil Robinson, Senior Director for Strategic Projects at LG Electronics, tells us that “The E and G Series were both step-up models, so the GX can be seen as the replacement for the E9.”
Given how close the LG GX and LG WX are in terms of design – both being slim, wall-mounted televisions, with only really a soundbar to differentiate the latter – the removal of an E Series is a move away from variety, even if the GX will be sure to find an audience of its own.
It’s a shame, given the truly unique aesthetic of the E Series compared to other LG TVs. The new BX and CX models look essentially the same as each other, too, like most televisions these days. How much can you iterate on a flatscreen, after all?
Why we loved the E Series OLED
Certainly, there are plenty of subtle differences between the physical appearances of TVs, whether that’s where the TV brand’s logo sits, what kinds of feet or stands prop it up off a counter, or the thickness and quality of the display’s casing. That’s not to mention the differences in picture quality – which is really the heart of any television experience.
But that’s why the E Series felt so refreshing: offering a unique form factor amid a ceaseless catalogue of identikit rectangles. Most of LG's OLED range shares the same panel and processor, anyway, so differences in design feel even more important
In our LG E9 OLED review last year, we praised the set’s “all-glass, frameless panel” for its “open and expansive air”, as well as “a dazzling picture, with crisp detail and truly cinematic visuals”. Aside from minor irritations – the lack of HDR10+, and a patchy Bluetooth connection – the E9 was and is a knockout television to watch.
The year before? We called the E8 OLED “arguably the ultimate expression of these OLED advances, thanks to its glamorous design, niftily integrated sound system and, best of all, mesmerizingly good pictures.”
Other LG TVs have similarly intriguing design choices – including the TV stand for the C9 OLED, which is slanted to funnel audio towards the viewer – but it’s frustrating to see successful examples of this not pursued further, limited to just one or two model generations.
So where did the E Series go?
Our senior home entertainment editor, Nick Pino, speculates that “the reason not to make one this year isn’t based on any pre-existing issues [with the E Series design], but rather that LG decided it couldn’t innovate enough to warrant a new model.”
It’s possible that LG backed itself into a corner with the glass panel design. The TV market demands iteration, and the unique design constraints of a glass display may have meant there was less room to alter or improve its shape going forward compared to other designs (the GX really feels like an iteration on the W Series, rather than a standalone model).
OLED panels are also infamous for often getting damaged during production – given their sensitive, organic materials – and we can’t imagine an all-glass display offsetting worries about breakages either.
The LG E9 OLED is still on sale for those wanting something different – costing roughly half what it did at launch this time last year – and we recommend you take a look if you aren’t sold on the new Gallery Series GX OLED, which offers the only notable divergence from LG’s existing models. Processing enhancements are likely to be minimal compared to the 2020 range too.
Chuwi’s UBook Pro is probably the best alternative to the Surface Go that Microsoft seems to have retired. All stocks of the diminutive tablet are currently out of stock and have been so for a while. You can still get it from third parties, often at a much higher price.
Gearbest sells the Chuwi UBook Pro for $ 399.99 (or £340/AU$ 670) when you use the coupon code GBCHUWI123. Exact prices after the discount in other territories will vary depending on the day’s exchange rate. Gearbest ships to most territories worldwide via expedited shipping although you may be levied additional charges and fees by customs.
Add the capacitive stylus pen and the original keyboard cover and the price creeps up to just under $ 470, which is still far lower than the 128GB version of the Surface Go (that comes without accessories).
What do you get for your money? A Gemini Lake-based Intel Celeron N4100 that is significantly faster than the Pentium 4415Y (based on CPUBenchmark numbers), 8GB of RAM, a 256GB SSD – that’s twice the storage capacity of the Surface Go, a 12.3-inch display with a full HD resolution.
The Surface Go has a smaller display size so, understandably, it is lighter and has a smaller footprint. The camera sensors on Microsoft’s tablet have a higher resolution but the UBook Pro has more connectors (including a useful HDMI one). This means you won’t mean any docking station to connect to a monitor.