Costco Black Friday 2019 Laptop Deals Revealed
CR evaluates the warehouse club's holiday sales
Costco’s Black Friday laptop deals are arriving early this year.
The big box retailer’s sales ad leaked on Wednesday, showing deep discounts on everything from Christmas trees to Greek yogurt to potato chips. Of course, there are plenty of deals on electronics products, too.
It’s a lot to sift through—which is where we come in.
We’ve scoured the ad looking for the best laptop deals. (Expect a separate article on television deals shortly.) Among the standout offers are a high-end Apple MacBook Pro for $1,200, Dell’s own high-end XPS 13 for $1,400, and an HP Pavilion that’s a good all-arounder for $480. Consumers on an even tighter budget will also find a Samsung Chromebook for $300.
The following offers are available Nov. 7 to 21. Click on each model name to see CR's full test results.
HP Pavilion 15.6, $480
This is a 15.6-inch notebook usually available for around $600. It’s a midrange laptop that should serve everyday consumers well, given the Intel Core i5 processor, 8 gigabytes of memory, and 256GB of solid state storage. As long as you don’t plan to edit lots of high-resolution videos or play high-end games, those are nice specs. Our testers awarded the model mostly high scores—with the exception of the display, which has a narrower viewing angle than other laptop screens, making it harder to watch, say, YouTube clips when you’re not seated directly behind it.
Apple MacBook Pro, $1,200
This is the 13.3-inch model usually available for just under $1,500. (Apple makes a 15-inch version, too.) The laptop in this online-only deal appears to be a 2018 MacBook Pro, which is plenty powerful. It has an Intel Core i5 processor, 8GB of memory, 256GB of solid state storage, and a battery that provides you with around 16 hours of web browsing. As long as you’re not planning to play high-end video games (Macs aren’t ideal for that anyway) and edit lots of high-res videos, this laptop will do just about anything you ask of it.
Black Friday Deals
These offers are available from Nov. 22 to Dec. 2. Click on each model name to see CR's full test results.
Samsung Chromebook Plus V2, $300
This is a 12.2-inch, 2-in-1 convertible Chromebook usually available for $520. Because it’s a Chromebook, it uses Google’s Chrome OS operating system, which is different from Windows and macOS but fairly easy to master for anyone familiar with the Chrome web browser. And because it’s a convertible laptop, you can bend the display behind the keyboard and hold the device like a tablet—which is handy because Chrome OS allows you to work with Android productivity apps. Just keep in mind that Chromebooks are mostly intended for light tasks, such as browsing the web, watching streaming video on, say, YouTube, and using simple apps, such as Google Docs. So even though the core specs—an Intel Celeron processor, 4GB of memory, and 64GB of solid state storage—don’t scream “high end,” this model will do all the things Chromebooks do. In addition to noting that the 7.25-hour battery life could be a little better, our testers give it mostly good marks.
Microsoft Surface Go, $400
This is the smallest laptop in Microsoft’s popular line of Surface devices. It’s a 10-inch 2-in-1 detachable, which means you can physically separate the display from the keyboard to make it easier to use like a tablet. You usually have to buy the keyboard cover separately (for a total cost of $550), but this Costco deal, which is online only, includes the keyboard as part of a bundle, so you’re saving quite a bit here. And while the specs might not sound terribly impressive—an Intel Pentium processor, 4GB of memory, and 128GB of solid state storage—this is still a good, highly portable laptop, considering how small it is. Our testers say the battery lasts some 11 hours on a single charge, and at 1.7 pounds, the device can be carried inside a bag without too much hassle.
LG Gram 17, $1,100
This is a 17-inch traditional notebook that usually goes for around $1,500. It’s also among the best-scoring laptops in our ratings, impressing our testers with its strong performance, battery life (15.25 hours), and light weight (2.9 pounds). Under the hood, you’ll find an Intel Core 7 processor, 16GB of memory, and 256GB of solid state storage. Outside of tasks that truly require a dedicated graphics card (such as high-end gaming), this laptop is more than powerful enough to get the job done.
Dell XPS 13, $1,400
The most powerful laptop featured in this roundup, this 13-inch XPS model (Dell also makes a 15-inch version) usually goes for around $1,850. It has an Intel Core i7 processor, 16GB of memory, and a voluminous 1 terabyte of solid state storage—rare for a laptop. Our testers had mostly good things to say about the model, giving it high marks for performance and portability. This is an online deal only.
Bonus Tablet: Samsung Galaxy Tab A, $200
Costco also has a few tablets on sale for Black Friday, and this 10.1-inch model is available for a good price. (It usually goes for $300.) It’s among the best-rated Android tablets in our ratings, with our testers giving it high marks for battery life (11.1 hours) and just about everything else but photo and video quality—so you might not want to use it for vacation photos. (You’re better off going with one of our top-rated smartphone cameras.)