Black Friday Deals for Small Business: Don’t Wait Till After Thanksgiving

The holiday season is almost here! But what you may not realize is that with Thanksgiving falling so late in November this year, the holiday shopping season has already started, and that’s why you don’t want to wait to take advantage of Black Friday deals that can be helpful for small business.

Generally retailers use the time between Thanksgiving and Christmas to really push deals hard. In the past years we’ve seen more and more focus on Black Friday and Cyber Monday. But this year retailers have about one week less between Thanksgiving and Christmas to make their sales, so they’re starting early. There’s a reason it seems like Halloween just happened but Christmas decorations are already up in stores – I’m calling it Thanksmas!

blak friday deals starting early on amazon

Take Amazon for example. They’ve created a new “deals” promotion they’re calling “Countdown to Black Friday.”, one of my favorite online retailers, just held a “Color Week” sale (it’s the opposite of Black Friday, get it?). Many other retailers aren’t calling attention to the Black Friday part, but have already started offering special pricing deals. So if you’ve been waiting till after Thanksgiving to start shopping for tech deals for your small business, don’t wait — start looking now to see if there are deals on tech you’ve been meaning to invest in.

But remember: don’t buy tech just because you see a good price. Make sure it’s something you really need and more importantly have budgeted for! And if you’re not sure whether you need to upgrade now, ask yourself how long you think your current device will last, and whether the holiday “deal” price is worth pulling the trigger a little early: you may find that having the cash now is worth putting up with your device a little longer.

Have questions about buying tech during the holiday season? RSVP for my Holiday Help Desk – I’ll be answering your questions LIVE on December 4th. You can also submit your questions now in case you can’t make the live event: afterwards it will be available to watch whenever you have time!

It’s time to back up your iPhone and iPad: iOS 7 is almost here!

Later today, probably in just a few hours, Apple will begin rolling out the iOS 7 update for the iPhone and iPad. Arguably the most major software update to ever grace an Apple handheld device, iOS 7 brings a whole new look and feel to Apple’s line of smartphones and tablets, as well as tons of new functionality.

But before you upgrade your devices to iOS 7, there’s a crucial step you should take: back up your devices!

While most Apple upgrades are a smooth, simple process, there’s no guarantee that you won’t lose data when you decided to upgrade. Since we’re doing more than ever from our smartphones and tablets (and some even consider those devices more important than proper hygiene), the fallout from losing data on your device could be devastating.

So here’s how to back everything up before you upgrade to iOS 7. Read More

Ready for the new iPhone? Sell your old tech for cash or credit

Apple iPhone buyback offer
My iPhone buyback offer from Apple

Between last week’s new Kindle announcement, the new Nokia Lumia announcement, and this week’s new iPhone 5 announcement, you may be itching for some new tech. And if you’re upgrading old gadgets, you might want to sell your old tech to raise a little cash for a new purchase.

If you decide to sell your device, definitely do some comparison shopping! There’s a lot of competition in the used gadget buyback market, and some pros and cons to each competitor. But the idea is the same across the board: sell your old gadgets, get cash or credit. The basics about each site below, plus what they offered my for my 8GB iPhone 4. For each site I said that it was in fair to good condition, with no water damage or screen cracks, but that I wouldn’t be including the charger.
Classic. Gazelle is one of the originals in the gadget buyback game, and they still have one of the easiest consumer experiences. They buy all kinds of smartphones and cell phones, but as far as computers and tablets go they’re only interested in Mac products. Shipping your phone to Gazelle doesn’t cost anything, so you get to keep 100% of your payments (check, Amazon gift card or PayPal). My offer: $116.

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Been waiting to buy a new MacBook Pro? Today Could Be Your Day – Upgrades Across the Line

While no major changes have been made to Apple’s professional line of laptops, the MacBook Pro, Apple quietly upgraded the entire line of products today to introduce some small changes—bigger hard drives, faster processors and some better graphics cards. Minimum hard drive sizes are now 500 GB across the line, and processor speeds have been bumped up: you now get a 2.4GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 on the lowest-end 13″ model at $1,199, and 2.8GHz i7 on the upgraded model at $1,499. Graphics on the high-end 15″ and 17″ models have been bumped up from the AMD Radeon HD 6750M to the newer HD 6770M model, which should provide a nice boost to anyone doing heavy graphics and video work, or even those just looking to eke out a few more FPS in their favorite games.

As Apple’s laptop upgrade schedule is never a public matter, you never know when the laptop you just bought is going to become last year’s model. Which is why if you’ve been interested in a new Mac, now is the best time to buy a new MacBook Pro.