If you’re like a lot of Komando.com readers, you’re that tech geek who everyone else turns to. “Which smartphone should I buy?”
“What the heck is 4K TV?” “Which one is the HDMI port?”
You’ve got the answers, right? You do your research – you read all the tech sites, you listen to the “Kim Komando Show” and a lot more.
However, even the most tech-savvy people tend to make mistakes when buying new technology. We’re talking about more than just overpaying – that’s a given, particularly if you buy gadgets like 8K TV long before they become popular.
Do you make these 5 mistakes? Don’t sweat it because, while these are critically important steps to make sure you’re buying the best tech, almost everyone makes at least one of these mistakes.
1. Shop Around
If you’re like me, you’re in a shopping rut. For instance, if you’ve had good experiences shopping on Amazon.com and at Walmart, those become your go-to stores for all your purchases.
When it comes to technology, though, you should shop around. There is no guarantee that you’re going to find the best brands or the best values at your go-to stores.
Today, there is no excuse not to shop around before you take out your credit card. Take a breath and take a moment before you check out.
First, do a little online shopping to see if you can find a better deal on the tech you’re buying. You can check out sites like the Komando Shop.
Second, be sure to use browser extensions such as the Camelizer and Keepa. They’ll alert you to lower prices on the web.
2. Get a Date
New technology is coming out all the time. This happens to all of us.
You stop by the Apple Store, Best Buy or you spend an afternoon window shopping online. The next thing you know, you shell out a few hundred dollars for a great, shiny new smartphone, tablet, TV or some other tech.
That’s fun, but you wouldn’t be the first person to kick yourself for buying a device too late. You might buy a Samsung smartphone only to find out that the newer model is coming out in a few weeks.
Here’s how to prevent that. Do a search on Komando.com or Google for the brand and model you’re buying. Make sure to click on “News” or scan for the most recent story about that product.
Look for news on upcoming products. You can also check the manufacturer’s website – if a new model is about to be released, it will be prominently featured there.
3. Check Compatibility
We’ve all made this mistake. You go shopping for new tech, perhaps a Christmas gift for a friend, only to discover that it doesn’t work with the devices they have at home.
Or maybe you’ve purchased tech only to find out that it doesn’t work with your smartphone, tablet or smart TV. For example, it would be easy to buy a streaming device like a Roku for your TV, but you go home and your TV doesn’t have an HDMI port. (Not that we’ve ever done that!)
Here’s what to do: Before you make your purchase, take a photo of your device’s make and model. When you’re at the store, or chatting online, ask a salesperson if the product you’re buying is compatible with it.
4. Do Your Prep Work
There aren’t many things more fun than bringing home something new, installing it and getting the most out of it. That may be a laptop, tablet, smart speaker or TV.
But did you get a good deal? Is it worth the price? Is there a better brand?
Make sure to check the product’s reviews before you buy it. Ask friends and family what they think.
You should also make sure that you have enough room at home for a large TV set, for instance. The point is, take some time to ensure that you’ll get the most value out of your new tech.
5. Spend More Money
Yes, at Komando.com, we love to help you save money. But the truth is, sometimes you need to pay more to get a better value.
Just think about it. You could spend $750 on a new standard high-definition TV set. But would spending $250 more on a 4K smart TV with built-in Roku with four times the pixel resolution be a better, long-lasting deal?
That’s true for many purchases, including pricey technology, cars and more. In the long run, you may be better off.
Common scams to take your money and how to avoid them
Yes! We just told you to spend money, but only sometimes on tech that you’ll enjoy for years to come.
But one of our goals here at Komando.com is to help you protect your money. We’re always telling you about the latest scams to avoid.