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Apple's Black Friday deals deliver gift cards in US and Canada

For its Black Friday deals in the U.S. and Canada, Apple will be handing out Apple Store gift cards instead of discounts on qualifying purchases, which include everything from Macs and iPads to accessories.

In a change from its past Black Friday deals, Apple will be offering gift cards (via Electronista) to U.S. and Canadian customers instead of product discounts.

Apple's gift card initiative first kicked off in Australia and New Zealand, but the company chose to stick with direct discounts for some European markets, including the UK and Germany. With the gift card strategy in effect for North America, customers will be able to find better deals at ongoing sales from the company's authorized resellers like MacMall, B&H Photo, Best Buy, Amazon and Target.

As for Apple's Black Friday deals, the company is giving $75 Apple Store gift cards to iPad Air buyers and $50 gift cards for non-Retina iPad mini or iPad 2 customers. Those looking to buy a Mac can expect $150 cards for MacBook Pros, MacBook Airs and iMacs. Finally, iPod touch purchases will rate a $50, while the iPod nano and Apple TV will net a $25 card. The iPhone does not qualify for the gift card program.

Apple's switch away from direct discounts is likely motivated to help preserve the company's high profit margins, but the move makes Black Friday deals from its authorized resellers look even more enticing, especially on Macs, all of which are detailed in our Price Guides at