Picks

An Instant Pot, iPad, and AncestryDNA Kit: Wirecutter’s Best Deals of the Week

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9.7-inch iPad (6th Generation, 32GB) ($250)

Back down to $250 in Space Gray and Gold, this is a great price, matching the lowest we’ve seen so far, on this recommended tablet. The 6th Gen iPad has a faster processor versus the 5th gen and also offers Apple Pencil support, a nice add on for tablet artists or notetakers. This matches the lowest price we’ve seen for the 6th gen and the price we saw on and off during Black Friday and Cyber Monday Sales. REDcard holders save an additional 5 percent.

The 9.7-inch iPad (6th Generation) is the top pick in our guide to the best tablet. Nick Guy wrote, “The things that have made all iPads great tablets—an unbeatable selection of outstanding apps, stellar hardware quality, long battery life, and unrivaled customer support—continue to make them the best tablets on the market. The 6th-generation iPad’s price is significantly lower than previous models’ prices, making it even more appealing and simplifying the decision between it and other iPad models. Although the iPad Pro and iPad mini models will be better for some people, the 6th-generation iPad is the best all-around value.”

9.7-inch iPad (6th Generation, 32GB).

Instant Pot Ultra Mini 3-Quart ($60)

If you want the extra functionality and cooking control of the Instant Pot Ultra series but have counter space limitations, the Instant Pot Ultra Mini 3-Quart is an excellent option—especially at this reduced price. At $60, this is the lowest price we’ve seen for this option, and while we’ve seen the non-Ultra version even cheaper in recent days, this is a great way to get a little extra functionality on the cheap. Be warned, the 3-Quart models, while great for cooking for one or a couple, can’t cook more than a cup of dried beans and are too small for making stock or cooking a whole chicken like some other models in the line.

The Instant Pot Ultra Mini 3-Quart is the extra features for small spaces pick in our guide to the best electric pressure cooker. Of the Ultra line, Lesley Stockton wrote, “The Ultra has an all-digital interface with a streamlined single-knob control. It also offers a pressure indicator that’s more visible when engaged, and a steam-release button separate from the float valve so there’s less of a chance of mild steam burns when you’re quickly releasing pressure from the pot. And the Ultra cooks foods as quickly and reliably as the Duo, with some extra functions like custom temperature control and an altitude-adjust function.”

Instant Pot Ultra Mini 3-Quart.

AncestryDNA Test Kit ($59)

Although not quite matching the low price we saw during Black Friday, this is still a solid deal and one of the better prices we’ve seen for this recommended DNA test kit. With a street price of $80, this is a great time to grab it if you missed out on holiday pricing and it could make a great gift for the genealogy buff in your life.

The AncestryDNA Test Kit is the top pick in our guide to the best DNA ancestry test. Amadou Diallo wrote, “AncestryDNA is the service we recommend for most people who want to learn about their ethnic heritage and/or connect with unknown relatives. It’s one of the most affordable services we evaluated, and our testers ranked it among the top in offering useful information in an easy-to-understand presentation. The company also has the largest reported database of DNA customers we’ve seen, providing significantly higher odds of a successful search for contemporary relatives than its competitors.”

AncestryDNA Test Kit.

Bissell PowerFresh Steam Mop 1940 ($57)

Down to $57 from recent street pricing around $80, the Bissell PowerFresh Steam Mop in white/blue is nicely discounted to a new low as a deal of the day. While we recommend this mop primarily for those with glazed tile or sealed stone flooring in their homes, for those individuals this is a nice addition for cleaning prior to holiday visitors. This is the best price we’ve seen by over $10.

The Bissell PowerFresh Steam Mop 1940 is the top pick in our guide to the best steam mop. Kevin Purdy wrote, “If you have to buy a steam mop for one or two small rooms worth of glazed tile or sealed stone, you should buy the Bissell PowerFresh Steam Mop 1940. It was the easiest mop to push around, get into corners, or tilt under sinks, tables, or other low surfaces. The PowerFresh’s removable water tank is far easier to remove, fill, and replace than the competitors. It offers continuous steam, which is more convenient and comfortable than pump handles or triggers, with three levels of intensity. It doesn’t weigh more than others, looks inoffensive, and can stand on its own while most steam mops cannot. The PowerFresh has thousands of positive reviews from owners, its pads are relatively easy to remove and clean, and it sells for less than many other steam mops we found (which were not worth the price).”

Bissell PowerFresh Steam Mop 1940.

GE JES1072SHSS Microwave

Whether you’re a city-dweller or just have a kitchen that’s on the smaller side, the GE JES1072SHSS is an ideal option for those with limited counter space. This matches the lowest price we’ve seen on this microwave. We’ve seen the price hover around $90 since August, so this is a solid additional savings of $20.

The GE JES1072SHSS is the little machine, big value pick in our guide to the best microwave. Michael Sullivan, Tim Heffernan, Ganda Suthivarakom, and Jessie Kissinger wrote, “For those looking to save space and money, we recommend the GE JES1072SHSS. This tiny 0.7-cubic-foot unit is about the size of a small toaster oven, but its turntable is only ¼ inch smaller in diameter than the 0.9-cubic-foot Toshiba microwave. That means it hogs less counter space but can still fit a 10¾-inch dinner plate or 9-inch square casserole dish. Like the small Toshiba, it has a user-friendly interface, express cooking controls from 1 to 6 minutes, and a mute button. It also has express cooking functions for popcorn, beverages, and potatoes, but not for other things like vegetables and pizza (functions our other picks include). At 700 watts, it doesn’t heat as quickly as our other picks, but it’s the best microwave we’ve tested in this size category.”

GE JES1072SHSS Microwave.

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