The first question is, what do you want from your hi-fi? Do you want to play LPs, CDs, or an occasional movie? Next, where will you put the speakers, and how large or small do they need to be? I'm writing this blog post for folks trying to put together the best-sounding hi-fi they can on a fixed budget. That's why I won't be covering wireless systems, because dollar for dollar, the better wired speakers always sound better than wireless models.
According to a recent survey, if you're looking to buy something online, you're most likely to be pleased with the outcome if you make the purchase on Amazon.com.
The world's largest Web retailer tops the list of online vendors in ForeSee's Holiday E-Retail Satisfaction Index with a rating of 88 on a scale of 1 to 100. This marks the eighth consecutive year Amazon has finished atop ForeSee's annual holiday survey of online shoppers; the results of this year's survey were released on December 27, 2012.
Overall customer satisfaction with Web retailers has … Read more
Here's a tip: When it comes to business expenses, "free" is usually the better option. But free accounting; that's the best. Noguska's NolaPro Cloud Accounting leverages the power of cloud-based data hosting and free tools like the Apache database software to give small and medium businesses a comprehensive business suite rivaling expensive solutions like Quickbooks. A browser-based interface gives NolaPro a familiar feel for the broadest range of users, and it makes accessing Cloud-based resources that much easier, too. Recent updates include Windows 8 compatibility.
NolaPro's setup wizard installed and accessed the Apache database, … Read more
LAS VEGAS--Software usually isn't the flashiest category to show at CES, but FaceCake's 3D virtual dressing room might be an exception.
CNET previously covered FaceCake's Swivel product back in February 2011, when the company first introduced the idea of adding virtual dressing rooms to online retail sites. Now, the Swivel product is carried in select Bloomingdale's department stores. To be clear, augmented reality, the technology behind Swivel, is not exactly new, but FaceCake's implementation of it, both online and in brick-and-mortar stores, is certainly noteworthy.
Here at CES, we got a chance to try out … Read more
I'm often asked if there's a particular time of year that's best to buy certain tech items, like tablets or TVs, or laptops.
My typical response is that it rarely makes sense to delay your purchase in hopes of scoring a better deal, because you can end up waiting forever. The TV you buy today will almost certainly cost less six months down the road -- but that's true of just about everything.
It this era of immediacy, it can be hard to remember the days when people would shoot a roll of film on a camera and then wait to get it developed before they even saw the photos. In a sense, before digital photography, the only instant pictures that existed were Polaroids.
Now, Polaroid is looking to change up the game again. It's opening several retail shops called Fotobars where people can bring in digital photos they have stored on their mobile devices -- including those in apps like Facebook, Picasa and Instagram -- and get them printed.
"There … Read more
2012 was hellish in a lot of ways, but it was a good year for saving money.
Of course, some of the best money-saving advice applies all year round, not just on a particular day. With that in mind, I've rounded up some of my favorite thrifty tips from 2012. (It probably goes without saying that most of them will work just as well in 2013.)
Following suit with other major holiday shopping days, Christmas Day also saw a jump in online traffic this year.
According to marketing firm Experian, the top 500 U.S. retail sites had 27 percent more online traffic on this year's Christmas Day compared with last year. A total of 115.5 million people in the U.S. visited sites like Target, BestBuy, Sears, and Apple's online store.
Looking at the past seven-week period, online retail traffic went up 10 percent over 2011, and each major shopping holiday had traffic increases this year, according to Experian. Thanksgiving had a … Read more
Before there was Pinterest, there was Polyvore.
The commerce site, which lets users curate and share virtual fashion and beauty collections, released some new numbers today, boasting a record year for revenue and user growth.
The site, which is about three years older than Pinterest, said today that it has 20 million users, roughly five million shy of Pinterest's last reported user base. But, while Pinterest was making headlines gaining users at lightning speed this year, Polyvore been bolstering its brand among the fashionistas and, the company said today, pulling in big retail dollars.
Polyvore users create visual collections, … Read more
Talk about good timing!
From now through Dec. 31, you can get a free 1-year membership to ShopRunner -- the service that affords, among other things, free 2-day shipping from dozens of big-name stores. (Use offer code runner when filling out the registration form.) That may come in awfully handy for you last-minute gift shoppers.
Before I go any further, and to help prevent another SiriusXM Internet Radio-style debacle, I must point out that this offer is ostensibly for American Express Platinum Card members only. Consequently, it could disappear at any time, and it's even possible that ShopRunner will … Read more