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Are you in love with gadgets? Don’t you think they are cool. Do you spent fortunes on gadgets? Because I used to. But I’ve learned my lesson and stopped wasting money on crap. Read my only 3 useful gadget tips and remember them every time before hitting the “purchase” button.
Concerning gifts, a useful gadget is one of the best gift suggestion for almost every occasion. Why? Because gifts are (or at least could be) handy, cool, trendy, innovative, and could please any taste and passion (like cooking, eating, gardening, music, reading, dancing, etc., etc.).
Don’t you believe me?
Well, trust me, I have a lot of experience. I’ve always been a fan of the gadgets. Especially those that help in the kitchen and household. And I would buy more and more …(although not having enough room anymore).
But luckily, I’ve reached the point, where I already consider easily whether a gadget really worth the money. Or it is the next useless crap.
During the years, I’ve come up with 3 helpful tips for choosing a truly useful gadget. And simply follow them. This way I avoid some goofy purchases and common problems with choosing, buying and living with the new “smart” device.
Since Christmas shopping is coming soon, I’ve decided to share these useful gadget tips with you.
** This following post contains some affiliate links. Despite that, the written in here is honest and based on my own opinion or/and experience, research and wish to share my findings with you!
TO HAVE OR FORGET
As I said before, I’ve tried many gadgets. Most of them are working with the kitchen and the household. Some of them are absolutely useless (I would even call them disastrous purchases), but some of them are crazy helpful.
The main purpose of the gadgets is to make our life better and save time. But is it always true? Because I have the feeling that sometimes they turn our life into a complicated mix of electricity, batteries and instructions.
I admit that most of the gadgets I use are not something that I can’t live without (well, with some techy exceptions). But those I use – or the best survivals – make my everyday life much easier.
Moreover, I doubt most of them save me time (again, with some huge exceptions) but I am truly happy to have smart things around that helps me with the household tasks, with raising my child and making better stuff in the kitchen.
Having in mind that most of the great inventions live on light and battery, it is always good to know the actual consequences of having a new useful gadget. And even more important – especially if you decide to buy a gadget for a gift.
The Main Problem with The Gadgets
It’s obvious – there are lots of absolutely goofy gadgets that probably will be in use for 1 to 5 times. I can’t really find a sensible reason for buying them, but who knows? Gadgets are a strange thing. They seduce us in a way that nobody can predict, they make us feel trendy, they have an impact on our perception of their necessity.
So confess – the main problem with the gadgets is to distinguish the necessary gadgets from the unnecessary ones. They are all cool – but do we actually need all of them?
My answer is NO.
What Does A Useful Gadget Mean – Truly Lazy or Pretty Cool?
Here are my simple rules, that I strictly follow and help me reckon whether or not to buy the next contraption on the market.
№1 Do your research
The competition on the gadgets market is endless. The number of gadgets that come every day is seriously high. Different brands, different specifications. Thus, the best way to be sure that you are going to choose the best & useful gadget is to do your homework.
There’s nothing much easier than search and read some reviews about the new useful gadget you’re wondering whether to buy. Probably it seems perfectly working on the TV ads or in the description, but there are people who might have something more to say, for sure. Honestly, as customers. Does the item arrive in proper condition, does the quality correspond to the expectation, does it need some additional stuff to buy (like cables, AC adapter, case, extra batteries – for the tech gadgets, you know), what are the exact sizes and weight, does it have a proper warranty…
Comparing the specs of desired items is the best way to go, although taking some decent amount of your efforts.
Just take your time and choose wisely. The time you spend in decision-making is not wasted time. It actually could assure your future happiness.
№ 2 If you wonder too much, delay the purchase a few more days
I know I said that it’s good to take a time to research, BUT if you can’t make any decision for more than couple of days, maybe that’s not really your next thing to buy.
Sometimes we (as customers) spend time in reading and estimating only because we (subconsciously) want to find the indisputable proof that we don’t need this item and it’s not good enough for our needs.
Listen to your inner voice and calm down for a day or two. The fact that you’ve just saw that massive discount on a cool kitchen gadget doesn’t mean you do actually need it and use it more than once a lifetime. If you forget about the item, that means you don’t (and would probably never) need it.
If you honestly can’t sleep well thinking about it and planning how will use it, then just go back to the Rule # 1 or immediately make a purchase. Voila!
№ 3 Do some simple evaluation
Try to figure out how often you are going to use the new gadget, and probably for how many years ahead. Will it save you some efforts on doing something? Or make you feel more comfortable while using it? Deliver pleasure as a whole? Is its price pretty reasonable ( for the approximate times you’ll use it)? Would you need it more than once?
For example, I did a really huge wonder whether to buy a baby-cooker. I was thinking – how actually our mom prepared our food when our generation were babies? Would this gadget make me lazy? Because I am not!
I also tried to estimate how often I would use it per week and would $ 120 worth paying? So I did some simple valuation, concerning needs and utility of the product. What I needed was to cook easily healthy-prepared food for my baby everyday for like 6 months, without spending fortune. After a few days of quick researches I’ve reckon that this baby-cooker gadget will
- cook delicious baby food in a healthy way in no more than 15 min. using every desired fresh or frozen product
- spend my time – I used to cook for hours with my steamer basket, then blending everything into fine puree, mixing, washing.. I hate freezing food so this procedure was repeating again like for 3 times a day. Imagine how time-consuming;
- save electricity costs (for the same reason above – the baby-cooker needs only 15-20 minutes of working);
- save free space on the kitchen plot – because of its satisfactory measures;
- easy to use – with only 2-3 buttons
- quickly cleaned and washed
- be in use really every day!
- be in use for other stuff then baby’s food (like any mashed vegetables esp. potatoes and tomatoes for my Bolognese).
Does the baby-cooker worth the money? Yes, definitely worth every single cent. So my final decision – BUYING IT! Even if I have to spend more money.
It should be the same evaluation process when wondering about buying a gadget gift for someone else. Because it’s not only about giving something you think it is cool. But if it’s going to be almost the next knickknack – then what’s the point?
Side note: Fortunately, I received the baby-cooker as a gift (one of the best ever baby gifts received). I know it’s a kitchen appliance but to me it was life-changing and top of the top non-toy baby gifts! (read more about this another money-saving topic here)
№ 4 Knowing your limits
Buying some gadget only because it’s on sale doesn’t make it more useful, right? Don’t fall into the marketing traps. Most advertisers will keep telling you how incredible their product is, how great impact their gadget has on the entire human living.
But don’t forget to focus on the big picture. Does this thing actually fit into your life (or the person’s you’re buying it for). Does this thing actually do what you want it to do?
Is this A-REALLY-USEFUL-GADGET?
Of course, it’s important to know your budget limits especially if talking about techies (such as plasma TVs, PDAs, large projections, etc.) and gifts. And I am not talking about the space only, but for the financial matter. You know what I mean – can you afford this new cool gadget (and the maintenance) just to say you have it?
When I follow my rules, I always feel pretty sure about my purchases, and later on – happy with them. And this is the main reason for shopping – to feel happy and satisfied with the new convenience.
Oh, one more thing – especially when buying useful gadget for a gift.
Consider the difficulty of the gadget usage, maintenance and necessary accessories (like how many batteries, how long cable, what extra tool for better working, est.) Nobody wants to receive something that CANT BE ACTUALLY USED RIGHT AWAY. Or should give money to arrange everything to work properly. Or buy 4 batteries every 2 weeks for working with the gadget from now on. Also, there are people who hate complex stuff with long instructions, a sea of buttons and options (a complex gadget is definitely one of the best Libra zodiac sign gifts if it’s not on their gift list) You may love the gadget, but think about the gift-receiver. It’s damn important.
Extra helpful tips on how to choose better gadgets
Only because I love gadgets and I want to be sure you’ll be also making the right choice and feel happy with your new useful gadget, I will share with you extra 3 tips:
1) Buy from reliable and authorized dealers
You wouldn’t want to buy a gadget (especially techy gadget) from black market vendors. The chances to be satisfied with your purchase are rather poor. It will probably have some problems after a week or even few days. It’s better to buy gadgets from brands that have efficient customer support and guarantee certificate. And don’t forget about Rule 1 – always research! The brand should be able to offer you an immediate solution in case the gadget suddenly stops working or it malfunctions.
2) Read the user’s guide
If the manufacturer tells you to do something to prolong a device’s life, it’s probably a good idea to do so. Manufacturers usually tell you what to use when you clean; and what operations to avoid in order to use your gadget more efficiently. Make it a habit of taking their advice and overlooking the instructions. The time spent on reading them is not wasted – I m sure that there’s always something useful to learn from the manuals.
3) Problems don’t fix themselves
Yes, that’s for sure. If your gadget arrives not working or soon stop working (usually within the first 48 hours), then try to call the support or write to the help-desk. Don’t be afraid to call: almost every device has a help number on the warranty card for this cases. If no warranty, ask how you can replace what isn’t working or the whole item for new working one.
Remember – if it’s broken, it’s broken. It definitely won’t suddenly begin working in the future for some magic reason. Meaning – contact the vendor immediately (mind your deadline) and ASK for support before leaving any bad reviews of disappointment.
So, in case you follow my simple rules and you’re not unlucky enough to get a dud in the first place, you will own a reasonably priced, perfectly working, wonderful and useful gadget that will hopefully provide you with years of pleasure and happiness. It took me time to understand how to choose the right gadget, but now I know and I’m happy to share my experience with you.
What was the “dummiest” but still useful gadget you have ever bought? Share in comments or leave a message.
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