In the high-tech world of today, it's all too easy to be left behind in the dust as the technological frontier moves on without you. Every day commercials on the television, radio, internet, and even cell phone bombard you with advertisements about countless new products. (Numerous of which seem to do the exact same thing the exact same way) So, to keep your head above water, here's a list of the first five things you should know before making that purchase:
1. What it Actually Does
This may seem blatantly obvious, but you may be surprised how many people go shopping with only a rough idea of what they're looking for. Decide ahead of time what it is you want your next purchase to do. If you want to play games and download plenty of apps, then a tablet is for you. If you want nothing more than to read all day from an immense library of books to choose from, then go the e-reader route. Or if you'd like to do both then get a tablet/e-reader hybrid such as the Nook Tablet or Kindle Fire. This will keep you from regretting your purchases and wasting your hard earned cash.
2. The Manufacturer
Not all gadgets and tech are created equally. Not all small brands are bad quality, however they are typically cheap for a reason. Even if the device itself works fine, a low price and unheard of brand could be a clear sign that it will have a short lifespan, meaning the company will support it with updates for only so long before dropping it to the wayside. Everyone likes saving money, so by no means should you automatically splurge for the most high-end toy you find. Just take a few minutes to research the brand and peruse both critic and customer reviews to ensure you'll get your money's worth in the long run.
If you need a device to replace your computer while you're out and about, then you need some serious processing power under the hood for it to carry out all your intensive tasks. This typically comes with a higher price tag but will be worth it in the end if you truly need it. That being said, if you just want something to play around with in your spare time, then you needn't spend the extra cash as the power will be wasted. Compare processors and RAM of the devices you're interested in regardless of need. Even cell phones should be thoroughly screened in this manner. Be aware that devices with high-powered options may have lower battery lives dependent upon settings, so make sure you know what you have.
4. The Time of Year
Big companies such as Samsung and Apple tend to unleash their newest lineup annually. Meaning if you can be patient and wait just a few months or weeks until their unveiling, you can get the last generation for a lower price as they seek to empty their stores of the old to make room for the new. Varying from company to company, the new releases are most commonly timed in the Spring and in the Fall, giving you plenty of opportunities to score some sweet deals.
5. The Cost
Yet another tip that should be blatantly obvious to anyone reading this list, and yet another that may surprise you. Too often do consumers see a commercial for a high-end device, such as the iPad, and instantly become hooked. They have to have it and rush to their nearest retailer only to be appalled by the price tag. Despite this, some will decide to buy it anyway and spend money they shouldn't have or will buy something cheaper only to be disappointed. To avoid this, once again, simply research the product online when you find your interest piqued. This way you will have a good idea of the price and may even find somewhere who has it on sale, or a similar device within your budget.