Where Tech Geeks Go Before Deciding to Buy the Latest Gadget


(Image by Ian Muttoo)

Your friends call you gear-head, gadget fiend, and sometimes just refer to you as the geek. And it’s true, you do love your gadgets.

Trouble is, rushing out and buying the latest and greatest new consumer electronic on the market is hit or miss. Sometimes you get something awesome, but other times it’s a waste of money. How do you know which is which?

Tell your friends that before they open their wallets and break their budget, they need to do research like you do. Then tell them about the three websites they need to read through before making any decision to purchase, or pass by, any shiny new gadget.

1. Engadget

Ask around and check out lists for top gadget sites and you’ll find that topping the charts at #1 is almost always Engadget.com. With monthly unique visitors reaching approximately 11.5 million, this tech site was deemed one of the best blogs of 2010 by Time magazine – it’s popular for a good reason. Part of its tagline reads, “obsessive daily coverage of everything new in gadgets and consumer electronics.” Its writers are considered among the best in the breed.Categories on the site include news coverage as well as hubs sub-divided into products, events and topics. Whether you’re a fan of perusing videos, listening to podcasts or poring over reviews, Engadget is comprehensive in its options. Oh, and if that isn’t enough, it’s available in several languages and offers an Engadget app for your phone.

2. Gizmodo

Just trailing Engadget in popularity, Gizmodo is another site that is oft on the tips of everyone’s tongues. A little more sassy attitude than Engadget (What else would you expect from one of Nick Denton’s sites?), it gets about 8.9 million unique visitors a month. The site includes open forums set up by approved users. Contributors provide updated information on consumer electronics as well as on a wider array of topics, such as science and architecture. In addition to a deal of the day, the site offers a “Gadget Guide” into which readers can either search a topic or browse through archives regarding gadgets, the tech world, rumors, new products and expected release dates. If you’re interested in the daily dose of info, you can sign up for daily emails so you never miss something mind-blowing …  like the advent of chocolate-theme cell phones.

3. Wired.com’s “Gadget Lab”

Particularly if you’re already a fan of Wired magazine, check out the magazine’s digital home – though the content is not identical, this internet-based technology news website offers related news and a blog that make it a site worth checking before you go out to buy the latest gadget. The aptly named Gadget Lab is one of Wired.com’s blogs with the tagline “Hardware That Rocks Your World” – enough said.  Chances are good that the writers here have already reviewed a product you’re looking for. Head to the gadgets page for a chronological listing of articles and download its widget for the Wired Gadgets of the Week, which, the site explains, showcases every new gadget “from revolutionary devices to cutting-edge tech toys.”

Remember, those thousands of reviews, professional opinions and user opinions will give you the honest second and third opinions you crave while acting as your reminder that there’s more than just one new toy on the market. Even though you may feel deflated over poor reviews for the item you’ve been super amped about, information about a newer, more exciting product is just a few clicks away – and you can save your money and keep from throwing it away on a gadget that wasn’t worth the expense after all.

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Published April 6, 2012 Updated: December 27, 2012
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