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Consumer News Features Archives

Black Friday 2014 Store Hours: Macy's Will Open 2 Hours Earlier This Year

This year, Macy's has already announced that its doors will open at 6 pm on Thanksgiving Day, a full two hours earlier than last year. With other major retailers set to follow suit, it looks like "Black Friday Creep" is edging ever closer to absorbing Thanksgiving. But can you skip the Turkey Day shopping insanity and still score the best deals?

Let's Discuss: Are Black Friday Ad 'Leaks' Actual Leaks?

This week, a Black Friday deal leaked when a LEGO fanatic received an order that somehow included the Black Friday promotional item for next month. What a clumsy mistake... or was it? We look at the reality of Black Friday ad "leaks."

DrivePop's Double Cross: What to Do When an "Unlimited Deal" Expires

DrivePop's offer of "unlimited lifetime" cloud backup service for a fixed, up-front price turned out to be too good to be true. Can consumers do anything when a company cancels an unlimited deal?

Why Hotels Charge 20% to 30% Less for Stays on November 23

Are you planning one more quick getaway before the madness of the holiday season descends upon us? Our travel sleuths have a big tip for you: hotels are slashing prices for stays on November 23. In fact, most dates during the Thanksgiving week tend to be slightly lower, depending on the location of the hotel. We've gathered some of the best deals for these pre-holiday vacations.

Another iPad mini?! When to Get a Deal on Each Generation of the mini

By now, most consumers know that the iPad mini 3 and its predecessor are essentially the same tablet. But many don't know how retailers will react now that there are three generations of iPad mini tablets on the market simultaneously. We've analyzed the iPad mini landscape to let you know which mini tablet you should buy and at what price.

Americans Will Spend $2.2 Billion on Halloween Candy This Year

Boooooo! That's an expression of discontent for a holiday without any numbers to define the consumer trends. But there's no need to get your Superman tights in a bunch. We've been stirring the cauldron night and day to deliver the digits to delight the demon shopper in us all.

10 Exercise Essentials From Nike's Columbus Day Sale to Keep You on Track

As the cold, grey winter approaches, it can be hard to stay motivated to keep up your exercise routine. Nike takes up to 50% off as part of its Columbus Day Sale, so we've chosen some items that might help knock out your excuses, or even get you excited to work out.

8 Commercials With Weirdly Inappropriate Music Choices

Macaroni Grill recently released a commercial with Sir Mix-A-Lot's classic "Baby Got Back" to declare that they like "big crusts." So we dug into the internet archives to find more examples of commercial music choices that were just wrong, wrong, wrong.

The Floodgates Are Open: The First Black Friday Ad is Here

Ready or not, Black Friday ads are here. To kick off the holiday season, we have our first sales circular leak courtesy of Black Friday veteran Harbor Freight. So now that the holiday seal is broken, here's what else you can expect from retailers in the coming weeks.

Thanksgiving Will Top Black Friday for the Best Deals

One of the biggest myths about Black Friday is that the best deals will be on Friday itself. But if Black Friday is no longer the starting point, when should shoppers be looking? And is Cyber Monday as good as it seems?

Stampedes, Stocks, and Savings: 16 Black Friday Myths Busted

For seasoned shoppers, Black Friday offers an endless array of best-of-year sales. However, not all the deals are good, and for the uninitiated, Black Friday can be overwhelming. Plus, with so many conflicting views on the holiday, it can be easy for a shopper to "do it wrong." So we're here to dispel the Black Friday myths from reality so you can shop smartly this year.

Rumor Roundup: A Price-Drop On Apple Beats Music? FF War? More?

Are you tired of reading rumors about the latest technology? Sick of hearing insane hearsay about Apple, Amazon, The Fantastic Four, and more? Well, neither are we! Hooray! That's why we put all the latest biz-buzz from the internet into one place, the Rumor Roundup!

Fine Print Nightmare: 5 Services That Profit From Confusing You

Some business have excessively complicated pricing structures or billing procedures, which result in them pocketing extra cash when customers don't (or can't) make the smartest shopping decisions. So what's a savvy shopper to do? We've rounded up five commonly confusing services and talked about how you can save despite the obstacles.

Let's Discuss: Why Can't Dead TV Shows Rest in Peace?

Why can't we just let TV shows and movies die, without having to bring them back later? Are we doing ourselves a disservice by rehashing old ideas? Or does it lead to enough great new things that we should keep at it? Tell us your thoughts, inside!

'But Wait, There's More!': Reviews of 8 'As Seen on TV' Products

The product choices on late night infomercials are as copious as the number of cable channels these days, whether they claim to keep you warm on the couch or get your shoes on and off with ease. Here we present a roundup of eight products that live up to all the pitched promises — or don't! And if you're moved to buy something yourself, rest assured: satisfaction is guaranteed (so we've been told).

Rumor Roundup: Will There Be a Golden iPad? Stan Lee Watches?

Are you tired of reading rumors about the latest technology? Sick of hearing insane hearsay about Apple iPads, Stan "The Man" Lee, Windows 10, and more? Well, neither are we! Hooray! That's why we put all the latest biz-buzz from the internet into one place, the Rumor Roundup!

Epic Retail Freakouts: 10 Shoppers Who Just Can't Right Now

People have probably had meltdowns since humans started exchanging goods and services. Today, thanks to security cameras, smartphones, and the Internet, when store customers completely lose it, we can sometimes watch the drama unfold. Here are 10 of the best retail freakouts that can serve as reminders to keep your cool — and maybe to shop online when possible.

13 Ways Black Friday 2014 Will Be Different

Yes, it's only the first week of October, but it's time to start talking about Black Friday. After all, preparation is the best way to manage your expectations and get the best deals possible once the big day is upon us. In that spirit, here's our annual list of the ways in which Black Friday will be different this year!

VIDEO: Can Ello (or Anything at All) Replace Facebook?

People are saying Ello, a new ad-free social media platform, might be the successor to Facebook! We got our hands on some invites and gave it a whirl; in this video, we discuss if Ello — or anything at all — can replace Facebook.

5 Hotel Deals in Myrtle Beach, TripAdvisor's #1 Destination for 2014

When you think of Myrtle Beach, your mind probably conjures up an image of miles and miles of pristine coastline lapped by the Atlantic Ocean, and that's precisely why the town has become the number one 2014 destination on TripAdvisor. Inside, we listed our top five Myrtle Beach hotel deals that will save you money while making sure you stay oceanfront and comfortable.

Bring on the App-etizers: Top 10 Apps for Drink and Dining Deals

A great meal never goes out of style, so we're back with another list of the top smartphone apps for finding food and drink deals. From Happy Hour and food truck trackers, to an app that finds deals at the best local restaurant options, here are our top picks.

Rumor Roundup: Giant iPads? Captain Kirk? And more!

Are you tired of reading rumors about the latest technology? Sick of hearing insane hearsay about Apple Watch, iPads, Captain Kirk, and more? Well, neither are we! Hooray! That's why we put all the latest biz-buzz from the internet into one place, the Rumor Roundup!

Let's Make Fun of the Toys That Kids Will Want for the Holidays This Year!

Toys "R" Us just released its list of the most anticipated toys for the holidays. (And yes, it is only October.) If you have a kid in your life, you'd better familiarize yourself with this selection of playthings. To make it a tad easier, we've cherry-picked our favorite five toys.

VIDEO: Do You Still Need a Tablet if You Own a Phablet?

With the astounding sales of the iPhone 6 and 6 plus (over 10 million units sold), it's clear that people really like larger phones. Our experts discuss if phablets and tablets are mutually exclusive technology, or is there's room in our hearts for both.

Spirit Airlines Will Raise Checked Baggage Fee for the Holidays

Spirit Airlines has made something of a hobby of courting public ill will. But its recent move to increase baggage charges during the holidays leaves the airline looking more like Ebenezer Scrooge than ever.

Click and Sip: The Pros and Cons to the Top Online Wine Stores

Once the domain just of the knowledgeable and wealthy, wine-buying is being disrupted by the internet (just like everything else). Ready to stock your cellar or impress dinner party guests? There are plenty of online wine shops out there, so we've put together a guide to some of the most popular and interesting options.

Would You Sell Your Personal Data for Profit?

Retailers have long been paying top dollar to search engines and others to get a peek at your browsing habits, and you can see the evidence in the ads that pop up later on. But Personal BlackBox is developing a way for consumers to bottle their online and retail activity to sell.

Et Tu, Home Depot? What to Do if You Are the Victim of Credit Card Fraud

Are you a recent victim of credit card fraud, like the just-announced hack at Home Depot? Have you noticed suspicious charging activity on your statement? Credit card fraud can be stressful, but we've come up with a few tips to help you prevent identity theft from taking a toll on your credit history.

Bigger Isn't Always Better: 10 Products Worth Skimping On

America is a land of bigness: we're the home of the Grand Canyon, the Cadillac Escalade, and the Big Gulp. But there are a few products where you're actually better off "skimping" and getting the smaller, less expensive option. From perishable goods to things that are expensive to maintain or store, bigger isn't always better.

Check Yo' Self: 5 Great Personal Finance Apps, Sites, and Tools

When it comes to managing your money in the digital age, you have a lot of options. Older software mainstays have been joined by web and mobile applications, all promising to be the only tool you need for getting – and keeping – your finances in order. We rounded up the best, most affordable choices for different financial objectives and styles.

More People Will Buy Apple's Pricier iPhablet Than the iPhone 6

With better features, the iPhone 6 Plus is obviously a high-end phone, but it also comes at a higher starting price: the iPhone 6 is $199 with a 2-year contract, while the Plus starts at $299. Thus, we were curious to know just how many people are actually interested in the pricier model. As it turns out, quite a lot of you.

10 Ways a Smartwatch Could Make Your Life Better

Smartwatches are the hottest new gadget in the tech world — but they're still pricey, and most need a smartphone to function. Is it worth the investment? Read on to see a few of the top ways a smartwatch could improve your daily activities.