Thursday, November 19, 2015

How the 8 days of Black Friday sales will work ... Long listing of examples of top deals ... Paperwhite 3 vs Paperwhite 1 photos ... New Handmade store ... Martha Stewart American Made store ...Isis: Inside the Army of Terror + an online article in 3 parts, based on an interview with an ISIS spy. Updated 11/20.

While watching the news this week, I heard CNN Contributor Michael Weiss on a panel discussing ISIS and the Paris attacks and found his flow of details about the middle east situation more informative than the usual and looked him up to find he co-authored the New York Times bestseller "Isis: Inside the Army of Terror," which gets good reviews.  The one complaint I saw was that there are a lot of acronyms involved and they're hard to remember when explained only once.

  I thought that was true also of his 3-part series online, "Confessions of an Isis Spy," based on days of interviews with a "man claiming to be a member of the so-called Islamic State’s security services" who provided details on the inner workings of the group.

  The Kindle book has the "X-Ray" feature enabled, which means that if you see an acronym on a page and want to remember what it represents, you can tap on 'X-Ray' (menu option), then tap on "Terms," to get a definition plus links to each time the word or acronym is mentioned, along with applicable text on those pages.  This is probably my favorite Kindle book feature when reading non-fiction.

  It's a terrible subject, but I want to try to understand it where that's possible, and I thought others might too.

Yes, it's that time of the year again...
8 Days of ~Black Friday~ begin Friday Jan. 20 (tomorrow)
Here are the Black Friday links again that were given earlier for the "Countdown" period:

  Black Friday pages for the US, UK, and Canada

  The sometimes confusing lineup of Kindles and how to decide
  which ones would work best for you

  Since some will be interested in the sales on Kindle e-Ink eReaders or Amazon's Fire tablets, here's a set of links that should help clarify the differences between models and allow easier comparison of features and prices:

  • Amazon's Tablet Comparison table
  • Amazon's Comparison table for the e-Ink Kindle eReaders
  • Paperwhite 3 vs Paperwhite 1: photos
  • Yr 2015 lineup: Details
  • Which Kindles Where? (Models available)

  IN THE MEANTIME, today (Nov 19), the Fire Tablet 10 (10.1" HD display, 16GB) is on sale "for a limited time" for $199.99 (normally $229.99).

I'll include, at the bottom of this blog article, Amazon's very long list of examples of specific products that will be on sale.

  SIDE NOTE: In addition, Amazon has launched its new HANDMADE products store.
  • Handmade at Amazon
  • Martha Stewart American Made

  That's right. Martha Stewart left EBay for Amazon, and her new store opens today.  Amazon's announcement explains that the new Handmade store
"spotlights local artisans that are personally selected by Martha Stewart and the editors of Martha Stewart Living.  On Handmade at Amazon, artisans selling in the Martha Stewart American Made store will be identified in their artisan profile page with the official Martha Stewart American Made badge.  To start, hundreds of unique handcrafted items are offered from artisans that have earned the Martha Stewart American Made distinction."

From Amazon's Black Friday week announcement:
' deals [will be] added as often as every five minutes for eight straight days" at the Black Friday page.
 " Customers will have access to 10 coveted Deals of the Day starting at midnight on Thanksgiving, and up to 10 more on Black Friday. Customers can also shop limited-time Lightning Deals on thousands of sought-after products per day throughout the eight days of deals.

Plus, Prime members will get 30-minutes early access to the majority of these Lightning Deals.
[This means some of the best deals could be gone before the non-Prime members get a look at them.

HOWEVER, Amazon will recognize 30 day Free Trials of Prime (UK prime here) during the 8 days of Black Friday, and there is the option to cancel the free trial after that.]
This year, Amazon will introduce more than 150 hand-picked Lightning Deals on everything from electronics to kitchen gadgets only through the Amazon Mobile Shopping App available on Android, iOS, and Fire OS.

  These deals can be found on the “App Only Deals” tab and will be released daily from 3 pm PT to 11 pm PT starting Thanksgiving through Wednesday, December 9. In addition, Prime members in 20 metro areas can use the dedicated Prime Now mobile app to enjoy free two-hour delivery on select Deals of the Day throughout the holiday season.

 . . . This year, [Amazon adds the feature]  “Watch A Deal” which allows holiday shoppers to pick the deals they’re most excited about and receive a notification to their mobile device when the deal is live. With this new feature, Amazon customers can effortlessly take advantage of deals throughout the day and while on-the-go.

Steve Shure, Vice President, Amazon Consumer Marketing [added]: “...with App Only Deals, customers will have plenty of options when it comes to scoring great deals from Amazon.”

Following are examples of some of the top deals that will be available at various times between November 20 and Black Friday at [Amazon's Black Friday page, U.S.].

Kindle Paperwhite, $99.99
$30 off Kindle and Kindle for Kids Bundle
Fire, $34.99
Fire Kids Edition, $84.99
$25 off Amazon Fire TV
$15 off Amazon Fire TV Stick and Amazon Fire TV Stick with Voice Remote
Up to 45% off select Samsung and LG TVs, including Samsung 32” 1080p LED TV for $177.99, LG 49” 1080p LED TV for less than $370, and Samsung 75” 1080p Smart LED TV for less than $2,000
Top-selling 60” 4K LED TV, $799.99
TCL 55” Roku Smart LED TV, $348
Hisense 55” 4K Smart LED TV, $448 (App Only Deal)
50” 1080p LED TV, $149.99 (App Only Deal)
40” 1080p LED TV, $145
TCL 32” Roku Smart LED TV, $125
32” LED TV, $75
Acer Home Theater Projector, $299.99
VIZIO 38” 2.1 Home Theater Sound Bar, $79.99
$49 off SONOS 2-Room Streaming Music Starter Set
Save 40% on Polk Audio Omni S2 Wireless Speaker
Up to 25% off Denon HEOS 1 Wireless Speakers
50% off Sony Extra Bass Bluetooth Headphones
Save more than 50% on Sennheiser HD 598 Special Edition Over-Ear Headphones in Black (Amazon Exclusive)
More than 50% off top-selling point-and-shoot camera
Jawbone UP3, $99
Save $100 on an Intel-Powered Dell 2-in-1 Laptop
ASUS 15” laptop, $129
Up to 40% off select Acer desktops, monitors, chromebooks, and tablets
Save more than 20% on select Samsung Galaxy Tablets
Save up to 70% on select SanDisk memory cards and USB flash drives
Top-selling mobile printer for less than $100&

Baby, Toys & Pets:
Save 30% or more on select Graco Car Seats and Strollers
Up to 60% off select Disney apparel, toys, and more
Save 50% on select best-selling wooden preschool toys
40% off select Fisher-Price Musical Instruments
Up to 50% off select toys from favorite brands like Barbie, Hot Wheels, Fisher-Price, and more
Save 50% on select construction toys from K’NEX, Lincoln Logs, and Tinkertoys
Up to 50% off select Lionel Train Sets, including Polar Express
50% off select wearable technology products and robotic toys for kids
45% off UDI R/C Falcon Drone with HD Camera
LEGO Star Wars Stormtrooper Figurine Alarm Clock, $15.99
Up to 60% off select Nylabone dog treats and chew toys
Save more than 50% on select Outward Hound dog toys
Up to 50% off select PetSafe pet products 

Home & Kitchen:
Save $50 on Samsung SmartThings Home Monitoring Kit
Save up to $200 on select Dyson vacuums
Save 40% on Silhouette Cameo Starter Bundle
$25 off with select DEWALT purchases of $100 or more
$20 off select orders of $100 or more in Porter-Cable tools
DEWALT 18-Volt Compact Drill/Driver Kit with Two Batteries, $89
More than 45% off Miracle-Gro AeroGarden Ultra LED Indoor Garden with Gourmet Herb Seed Kit
Up to 60% off select products from FoodSaver, Oster, Krups, Nespresso, T-fal, Wilton, and more
More than 55% off select Imprint Cumulus Comfort Mats
More than 50% off select Instant Pot Programmable Pressure Cookers
Save up to 40% on select cookware from Circulon and Rachael Ray
More than 40% off Rabbit 6-Piece Wine Tool Kit
Save 20% on Soma Sustainable Carafe and Plant-Based Water Filter, available through the new Amazon Launchpad program for startups 
Sports & Travel:
34% off Skywalker 15-Feet Jump N’ Dunk Trampolines
Insta-Bed Raised Air Mattress with Never Flat Pump - Queen, $87.99
BARSKA Starwatcher 400x70mm Refractor Telescope, $49.50
30% off Reebok Professional Deck Workout Bench
25% off Nautilus T614 Treadmill
STIGA Triumph Table Tennis Table, $299.99
25% off select Timbuk2 Command Messenger Bags
25% off select Under Armour fleece
adidas Originals Men’s Sport Essentials Tee, $19.99
Save up to 50% on select adidas footwear for men, women, and kids
Save 70% or more on Samsonite Two-Piece Spinner Sets
Up to 45% off RV and camping supplies, including select products from Camco and Valterra
Up to 55% off select Automotive D-I-Y items
Fashion & Beauty:
Up to 70% off select clothing, shoes, accessories, jewelry, and watches for men, women, and kids
30% off select clothing, shoes, accessories, jewelry, and watches with promotional code 30BLACKFRI
Up to 70% off select diamond jewelry gifts
Up to 50% off select luxury watches for women
Select Levi’s Jeans for men, $39.99 or less
45% off select New Balance shoes for men, women, and kids
50% off select Steve Madden shoes for men
50% off select Steve Madden and Madden Girl shoes for women and kids
50% off select Stride Rite shoes and more for kids
Select baby and kids’ coats, fleece, hats, and more, $14.99 or less
Save up to $30 on Oral Care, including Oral-B electric toothbrushes
Up to 25% off select skin care products, including Dove, Olay, and more

Books, Music & Video Games:
80% off Transformers: The Covenant of Primus
Save more than 50% on Deathstroke Volume 1 Book and Mask Set
Save on more than 10 autographed CDs, including Kenny Rogers, Megadeth, and more (Amazon Exclusive)
Save 15% or more on select vinyl records
Save $20 on Need for Speed
Save $30 on Rock Band 4 Wireless Guitar Bundle
$50 off Xbox One Consoles
$50 off PlayStation 4 Uncharted Bundle
$25 off Metal Gear Solid V
Hundreds of PC download deals up to 70% off

All prices available at select times and while supplies last.

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  1. Yesterday, I was in Walmart and realized why I don't like big-box and superstores. They're temples dedicated to unbridled consumerism. These Black Friday sales give me a similar feeling. Getting a deal becomes more important that asking "do I really need this?" The answer is often no. There are more important things in life than anything on the list above.

    I'm not Amish, but I am getting more Amish in my attitude toward devices. More and more, I'm asking myself if I really need a particular item. Will it make my life better on only add distractions and clutter? Often the answer is the latter.

    1. Inkling - you're right. I think, though, that some people and especially families, are on tight budgets and keep a look-out for sales for those reasons, and as it turns out, the Black Friday sales tend to have the best discounts - JUST to attract people to the store, whether online or offline.

      There's no doubt that others do it just to feed a desire to get something for a lot less even if they don't need it. But at least it's voluntary. I bought a couple of items Thursday afternoon. But once the big sale began, I haven't even looked because there's nothing I've been wanting specifically.

      Some have more money to spend than others, although I think that this percentage is decreasing. The problem I see is when people buy on credit just because something is on sale and they can't really afford it.

      What I really don't like are the pushy (usually greedy) mobs at physical stores where decent behavior is forgotten and it's sometimes somewhat dangerous to be in those situations. Sure not a pleasant way to spend the day (unless finding a bargain is one's main goal).

      I actually like Costco because there's so much choice, decent pricing but no pressure. But they often don't carry the specific item I want -- just the most popular ones. Have never been in Walmart because of their treatment of their everyday staff.

      As for devices, even though I do this blog and I used to buy the devices so that I could report on them or answer questions, I haven't bought a tablet since Sept. 2013 (very happy with the 8.9" HDX) and did buy the Paperwhite 3 after skipping Paperwhite 2 and do really like the relative speed (e-Ink is never fast) and the clarity of this model -- it's a pleasure to look at. It wasn't "needed" since the Paperwhite 1 still works, but for the $120 that it costs (at regular price), it's been one of my favorite buys. I now use the earlier devices as loaners or as backup.

  2. Your paperwhite comparisons are very helpful, Andrys. Thanks.

  3. I have a paperwhite and absolutely love it. I also enjoy the website There is a daily entry for a giveaway. A BIG negative is that it is always given by around 9:30 EST. I live on the West Coast. That is 6:30 am. I am not even up yet. Could it be on a day delay so that all of us might enjoy the giveaway.

    1. Wouldn't it be best to ask them ?? At least it's quite a good plug for the deserving Windwalker and Hamilton. Glad you're enjoying your Paperwhite. It's great for saving the eyes. Beautiful device.


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