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(NewsUSA) - With the holidays upon us, trimming household expenses can free up extra cash to maximize your gift-giving budget. One place where you may not realize there are huge savings to be had is with your wireless bill.
Apple iPad Air
If the crowds at the mall seem a bit thinner this holiday season, it may be because more shoppers are at home, buying gifts on an iPad.
It’s already November, which means that the deadline to finish off holiday shopping lists is fast approaching. ShopSavvy almost always lands on lists of recommended apps for shopaholics, and that reputation is well deserved. Primarily a bar code-scanning app, ShopSavvy has become a secret weapon of sorts for bargain hunters, thanks to its extensive database of prices and sales. Plus, its mapping features can help shoppers weigh whether it’s worth it to run to another store. Combined with options that let you make personalized lists, get equally personal suggestions and share deals with friends, ShopSavvy is an app to add this holiday season. Free, for iOS, Android and Windows Phone devices.
Whether you’re trying to get ahead of a little holiday weight gain or just interested in keeping better track of what you’re eating, My Fitness Pal is an easy, yet robust app that should help you with your goals. It functions both as food diary and a source of advice — though, of course, you should speak with your physician before you embark on any major change to your diet and lifestyle. Its fairly complete database of food means you won’t have to spend a lot of time hunting around for nutritional information to input on your own. And its data not only show you how many calories you’ve consumed (and burned) throughout the day, but also give you information on how you’re doing on your intake of carbs, fat, protein and more. Users also can choose to share their progress with each other (because, sometimes, it’s not easy to go it alone). Finally, the app also works with several other popular fitness apps, including those for trackers such as Jawbone UP and Fitbit, to keep all your info in one easy-to-find place. Free, for iOS, Android, Windows Phone and BlackBerry devices.
Like it or not, the heaviest shopping season of the year is looming, and chances are you’ll need at least a little bit of help to get the best deals on items. BuyVia, a shopping and deal-tracking app, has recently expanded out of its core focus of finding the best tech deals to a range of different products including fashion and household goods. Users can find deals by telling the app what products they are most interested in and get emails or push notifications telling them about flash sales, price cuts or even sales on items they want at nearby stores. Signing up for a BuyVia account also enables you to synchronize your lists across devices, so you can move easily from PC to smartphone, to tablet and back. Free, for iOS and Android devices.
(BPT) - Despite parents’ best efforts, bedtime can be the most stressful time of the day. Many kids fight sleep and resist going to bed, and questions of “but why do I have to go to bed?” are often answered with an unsatisfying, “Because I said so!”
(BPT) - Have a holly, jolly, high-tech holiday – and in case you didn’t hear – it doesn’t have to cost you an arm and a leg. Some of the season’s hottest tech gifts are more affordable than ever this year.
(BPT) - The always on, always connected way of life has benefits and drawbacks – our to-do list never seems to stop growing while the time never seems to stop shrinking. Technology makes freedom possible, but balancing personal and professional responsibilities requires more than the ability to work from anywhere, it’s about what you are able to get done from where you are that matters.
(BPT) - The upcoming holiday season has parents and family members focused on finding the perfect gift for their loved ones. With this year’s release of the PlayStation 4 and the Xbox One joining the new Wii U, video games are bound to once again be at the top of wish lists. With a vast selection of titles and genres, there is something for every player. While choosing the right game may be perplexing to some parents, figuring out which games are suitable for your child doesn’t have to be. Remember to ask these important questions before giving video games and other interactive content as a gift:
SAN FRANCISCO — There’s no reason you need to know what a codec is. Unless you’ve tried to view or share video shot on one type of device, say an Android phone, on another, like an iPhone.
Looking for a quick getaway, but have limited time to research options? Consider Google’s Field Trip app, which runs in the background of your phone and highlights points of interest in your immediate area. The app’s not for everyone; people who get annoyed about push notifications, for example, or those not keen on sharing their location information with apps should skip this download. But for those who don’t mind sharing, Google offers everything from restaurant recommendations and pieces of local history to unexpected festivals and events you might enjoy. The app pulls from a number of content sources, including Zagat and Thrillist, for its unusual pieces of info, and lets users choose how frequently they want updates from any given source.
(BPT) - What do most people want for the holidays? Technology and home entertainment gifts are highly sought after, meaning gift-givers have plenty of opportunities to get an impressive present. If you think you need to spend a lot to get a great gift, think again. There are many great options for less than $100.
(NAPSI)—To help you stay in the know while on the go, today’s cars are equipped with all kinds of clever ways to keep you, the driver, informed and connected—and, more important, doing so in a much safer way. If your car isn’t already equipped to keep you connected, it’s actually easy to add a device that will transform your car into a “connected car.” For example, one of the most smartphone-friendly options for the car today is the latest smartphone-powered in-dash receiver, AppRadio 3, which replaces your current car stereo, and through the free AppRadio app (available in the Apple iTunes App Store and Google Play Store) control dozens of compatible apps ranging from entertainment to navigation. Using similar touch and motion gestures that you’re already accustomed to with your smartphone, you can more safely access these features on a high-resolution, 7-inch capacitive touchscreen. For additional safety and convenience, the receiver offers a variety of other important in-vehicle technologies:
SAN FRANCISCO — Here’s the most important feature of Amazon’s new Kindle Fire HDX color tablets: Operators are standing by.
This deceptively difficult game puts players in charge of a spinning wheel with red, yellow and blue sections under barrage from a never-ending stream of smaller primary-colored balls. The objective is to always catch an incoming ball with its corresponding section on the wheel. This is not as easy as it sounds.
There are dozens of to-do-list apps out there, but Any.do stands out for hitting the delicate balance between clean and robust so that it’s easy to set up lists organized the way you want without too much clutter.
Managing classes can be tricky, particularly in high school and college when students are juggling the notes, schedules and projects for many advanced courses. StudyBlue works with schools to let students organize their notes and make study guides for specific classes and even share materials such as syllabi with classmates.
CUPERTINO, Calif. — It’s still officially summer, yet major electronic companies have already announced a slew of holiday gift ideas: iPhones of different colors, video game players and a new category of wristwatches designed to mimic the functionality of smartphones. Much of the early attention has been on smartwatches.
1Weather is one of the best weather apps out for Android. Its clean layout and easy-to-access information have won it a lot of fans. The app has a seven-day forecast and lets users bookmark multiple cities. It also has animated radar, lunar charts and the ability to share weather conditions through email, text, Twitter and Facebook. It offers three attractive options for screen widgets so that you can consult the weather without opening the app. Free for Android devices. A version that removes ads is available for $1.99. One note: It’s called Weather on the Play Store, but 1Weather in description.
We’ve officially cleared mid-August, which means it’s time to start thinking about homework, after-school activities and weekend school commitments. Studious is a strong candidate to keep your academic life flowing smoothly. The app not only makes it easy to add appointments, but users can also add homework assignments, test schedules and notes to each appointment. Plus, Studious has one particularly nifty feature — the ability to set the ringer to silent, vibrate or airplane mode automatically once class starts. Now that’s service. Free, for Android devices.
New phones are continually coming out. Which should you buy? Here’s a summary of The Associated Press’ recent phone reviews, including Samsung’s Galaxy Mega phone, which recently made its debut in the U.S.
SEATTLE — Amazon.com has begun to update its Kindle e-reader business, offering some modest tweaks to its Kindle Paperwhite device to make it brighter and faster.
Scanning a document can be a real pain, particularly if you’re stuck in some sort of loop where you have to print it, sign it, scan it and send it back. CamScanner aims to take a little bit of friction out of that process by making your scanner something you probably have on you anyway: your smartphone.
Remember the sneaky trick played by software makers? Download a free program and somehow it would automatically install an unwanted “search toolbar” on your computer’s Internet browser.
The Citizens for Soldiers club will have its monthly meeting and workday from noon to 3:30 p.m. Monday at the Belton Senior Activity Center, 842 S. Mitchell St., Belton.