Bentonville, Ark. - Sam's Club and Sears touted both TV and web access in their March Madness promotions.
"This year, we anticipate a lot of viewers will watch the basketball tournament games from not only their HDTV, but smartphones, tablets and computers," said Joe Hartsig, the wholesale club's senior VP for technology, entertainment and office. "Therefore, we've made sure that we have expanded savings on many devices to better enjoy viewing the games."
The chain also cited a 2010 Unicast survey suggesting that 54 percent of March Madness fans will go online or use a mobile device to watch coverage of the games.
To that end, Sam's Club is offering discounts on a host of Hewlett-Packard PCs and peripherals this week, including:
Â· a DV6 15.6-inch LED notebook for $499 after a $100 instant discount;
Â· a DV7 17.3-inch LED notebook for $749 after a $100 instant discount;
Â· a 21.5-inch LED Slimline S5747 bundle for $539 after a $60 instant discount;
Â· an 18.5-inch LCD Slimline S5737 bundle for $437 after a $60 instant discount;
Â· a Photosmart Plus e-All-in-One wireless printer for $79.86 after a $15 instant discount; and
Â· a 564XL black inkjet cartridge two-pack for $59.87.
Vizio is the focus on the home theater side, where sale items include:
Â· a 47-inch full-array TruLED 3D HDTV with Vizio Internet apps for $1,398;
Â· a 55-inch edge-lit Razor LED HDTV with Vizio Internet apps for $1,298;
Â· a 47-inch edge-lit Razor LCD HDTV with Vizio Internet apps for $948;
Â· Vizio's HD soundbar with wireless subwoofer for $228.88; and
Â· an 8-foot ultra high-speed HDMI cable two-pack for $34.88.
Elsewhere, Sears similarly emphasized Internet access by offering deals last week on Samsung's 46-inch and 55-inch "smart" and LED 3DTVs featuring the retailer's Alphaline Entertainment digital delivery service. "For college basketball enthusiasts, this means easy access for browsing the web to check the latest game scores or even looking up your bracket picks to see how your scoring compared to your friends," the company said.
To sweeten the pot, the 55-inch, 240Hz model (sale price: $2,790) was bundled with a free Samsung 3D starter kit valued at $500, which includes two pairs of 3D active glasses; "Shrek," "Shrek 2," and "Shrek the Third" re-mastered Blu-ray 3D discs; and mail-in coupons for "Shrek Forever After" and "Megamind" Blu-ray 3D discs
Sears also offered special 36-month, no-interest financing on Samsung LEDs sized 46 inches and larger when using a qualifying Sears card.