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Amazon Prime Day 2024: Expert tips for best deals

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Amazon Prime Day 2024: Expert tips for best deals

Amazon Prime Day’s 48-hour sales event starts at 3 a.m. ET/12 a.m. PT on Tuesday, July 16, and ends on Wednesday, July 17. This is Amazon’s 10th Prime Day event. While the company has not revealed exactly how many items will be available for sale, millions of items have been up for grabs with great deals that average 40% off in past years.

Amazon starts with early deals on its products, and several early Prime Day deals can be shopped for now. The number of categories that will have deals available has not yet been announced either; however, you can likely expect deals from a wide number of categories during the main Prime Day event, including major TV brands, Smart Home devices, Fashion, Beauty & Wellness, Furniture, Pet Supplies, Tools, Fitness equipment and more.

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A woman shopping on the Amazon app (Kurt “CyberGuy” Knutsson)

How to work the deals. Be fast!

Prime Day deals can expire in minutes, and some deals conclude when inventory is gone. Inside the Prime Day event are three different promotions:

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1) Spotlight Deals: These are typically larger, more expensive items that are available for a limited time.

2) Gold Box Deals of the Day: These are smaller, less expensive items that are available for a limited time.

3) Lighting Deals: These are the most popular type of Prime Day deal. They’re typically on very limited quantities of products and only last for a few minutes.

I rank these in order from least urgent to most urgent. The Lighting Deals almost always offer the best prices and last for a short time or when sold out, sometimes even just minutes. Even though it may look like a deal is gone, a tip below could provide an easy workaround to getting the deal anyway.

KURT’S BEST AMAZON PRIME DAY DEALS

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Amazon Prime Day 2024: Expert tips for best deals

Prime membership ad (Amazon) (Kurt “CyberGuy” Knutsson)

5 SECRETS TO SHOPPING SMARTER ON AMAZON

How to get a cheap Amazon Prime membership

You can still participate in Prime Day even if you’ve never had a Prime membership before. See below for all the available discounts.

Get a 30-day free Amazon Prime trial

Take advantage of a free 30-day trial of Amazon Prime to access Prime Day deals and free shipping. Just remember to cancel the subscription if you decide not to continue after the trial period.

Students: Get 6 months of Amazon Prime free

Students are eligible for a six-month free trial of Amazon Prime. To sign up, students must verify their status with a .edu email address.

Medicaid or EBT: Cheaper Amazon Prime

If you’ve got a Medicaid or EBT card, you can sign up for an Amazon Prime membership for $6.99, which is almost half the cost of a typical membership. 

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9 BEST FEATURES OF AMAZON PRIME YOU MAY NOT KNOW ABOUT

How to share an Amazon Prime Membership

You can share your Amazon Prime membership with another adult in your Amazon Household. You and your invitee must both be adults and agree to link your accounts through Amazon Household and agree to share payment methods. This means that you will have access to each other’s payment methods, so you should only share your Prime membership with someone you trust. The person you share your Prime membership with will get the same Amazon Prime benefits as you for no additional cost. Both adults will keep their own personal accounts while sharing Prime benefits. To do this, once you’re logged in, add that person to your Amazon Household by following these steps.

How to add a person to your Amazon Household

  • Log into your Prime account by clicking here
  • Click Add Adult
  • Give their name and email address and follow the onscreen instructions from there

KURT’S BEST AMAZON PRIME DAY DEALS

My 6 Prime Day battle plan tips

Amazon Prime Day 2024: Expert tips for best deals

Prime Day ad (Amazon) (Kurt “CyberGuy” Knutsson)

1) Create a Wishlist on Amazon: Put everything you buy regularly throughout the year, like dog food, light bulbs, staple goods, etc. Add upcoming birthdays and big-ticket items you have been holding off on buying, and get your holiday list done for Christmas gifts way ahead of time while saving huge.

2) “Join Waitlist” on sold-out products you want and missed: Think it’s sold out? Maybe not. Items sitting in another shopper’s cart expire if not purchased within 15 minutes. If you are on a waitlist, you could get notified that the deal is yours.

3) Download the Amazon smartphone or tablet app to see deals first: The app shows deals coming first and allows you to create a “Watch this deal” list to get notified when a deal is going live.

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4) Say “Alexa, what are your deals?” for exclusive offers: You can power through this audio form of deals by saying “Alexa, next” as they are being described to advance to the next deal. Voice shopping is a complete hassle, and Amazon knows it. That’s why they are tempting us to try it with even better deals that you can find on the site.

5) Compare prices at other retailers: Look at prices for brands like BestBuy, Walmart, Kohl’s and Target, since so many other sources are taking advantage of the Prime Day excitement.

6) Shop safely online: Ensure your internet connection is secure and be wary of phishing attempts. Always shop directly through Amazon’s official site or app. The best way to protect yourself from clicking malicious links that install malware that may get access to your private information is to have strong antivirus protection installed on all your devices. This can also alert you of any phishing emails or ransomware scams. Get my picks for the best 2024 antivirus protection winners for your Windows, Mac, Android and iOS devices.

FOR MORE OF MY SECURITY ALERTS, SUBSCRIBE TO MY FREE CYBERGUY REPORT NEWSLETTER HERE

Watch out for these losing Prime Day mishaps

  • Avoid Unknown Brands that can often disappoint
  • Avoid Fake Reviews by using fakespot.com. Instead of adding their browser extension, just link to the search field to copy and paste an Amazon product listing. Fakespot will analyze the results to show a letter grade and explanation. The goal is to weed out fake reviews and identify troubled listings.
  • Avoid overpaying by checking the lowest price history at camelcamelcamel.com. A price history of almost every Amazon item is recorded here to show if you are getting the lowest price.
  • Avoid the Amazon Assistant browser plug-in for privacy concerns. While Amazon’s browser plug-in can make comparing items and tracking deals convenient, it also comes at a cost to your privacy in the way it can track your web browsing activity.

KURT’S BEST AMAZON PRIME DAY DEALS

How to find the best Amazon Prime Day deals

Amazon also offers early Prime Day deals before the real Prime Day if you wish to get a head start. Check out my picks here.

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Kurt’s key takeaways

As Amazon Prime Day approaches, the anticipation builds for a whirlwind 48 hours of exclusive deals and savings. While the exact offerings remain shrouded in mystery, the past gives us a glimpse of the potential for significant discounts across a diverse range of products. Remember, the key to conquering Prime Day is speed and strategy. With limited-time offers and lightning deals that vanish in the blink of an eye, being prepared is important. So, set your alarms, create your wishlists and stay vigilant. Prime Day is not just a chance to snag a deal, it’s an opportunity to outsmart the rush and emerge with the best for less.

Do you feel like you’re saving more this year versus last year? What items would you like to see get discounted during Prime Day? Let us know by writing us at Cyberguy.com/Contact.

For more of my tech tips and security alerts, subscribe to my free CyberGuy Report Newsletter by heading to Cyberguy.com/Newsletter.

Ask Kurt a question or let us know what stories you’d like us to cover.

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Technology

Suunto’s new headphones finally made me appreciate bone conduction

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Suunto’s new headphones finally made me appreciate bone conduction

As a city runner, I never thought too hard about wearing noise-canceling earbuds. I’d dabbled with open-ear buds in the past but mostly ran in well-lit parks where my biggest danger was dodging goose poop. It’s different in the suburbs. Recently, I was nearly pancaked by a Range Rover going at least 10 over the speed limit. I never heard it coming, even though my headphones were in ambient mode.

Which is why I’ve spent the last two months testing the $199 Suunto Wing and $149 Suunto Sonic.

Both the Wing and Sonic are bone conduction headphones — a category that’s long been dominated by Shokz (formerly AfterShokz). The Sonic is the more basic, entry-level device, while the Wing adds a few more flourishes — namely, LED lighting, a portable power bank, and head motion controls. The Wing also has slightly better IP67 water and dust resistance compared to the Sonic’s IP55 rating.

Bone conduction headphones vibrate sound waves into your skull. It helps you stay more aware of your surroundings.

Bone conduction works by sending sound vibrations through your cheekbones instead of traveling through the air and into your ear canal. Some athletes swear by bone conduction because it keeps your ears open, meaning you’ll stay more clued into your surroundings compared to any transparency mode. (As a bonus, it can help people with hearing loss listen to audio.)

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I’ve known all that for ages, but I’ll admit — I’ve never cared much for bone conduction in the past. My old AfterShokz headphones weren’t comfortable at all, but the real problem was that I rely on bass-heavy running playlists. And bone conduction? It’s not the best at bass. Even so, almost getting flattened by a speeding Range Rover was as a good reason as any to give bone conduction another go.

I generally don’t love wraparound headbands, but this was more comfortable than I expected.

On that first point, I was pleasantly surprised that the Sonic and Wing were both comfy to wear. My old AfterShokz headphones had a wraparound neckband that dug into my skin, hurt my smallish ears, and never sat quite right. These headphones also have a wraparound design, but I felt no discomfort. The headphones were stable and secure during my runs and walks. Plus, the part that sits over the ear was thin enough that it didn’t cause issues when wearing glasses or headbands — a problem I’ve had with other open-ear headphones like the chunky Bose Sport Open Earbuds.

Bass still isn’t amazing, but I was stunned at how much better it sounded on the Wing and Sonic compared to my first foray into bone conduction headphones. The rumbly intro on Stray Kids’ “Megaverse” didn’t sound nearly as cool as it would’ve on my Beats Fit Pro, but it was good enough to keep me pumped. After a few weeks, I stopped noticing the difference. (It helps that Suunto offers various sound profiles, including an outside mode that boosts bass a bit.)

The powerbank holds an extra 20 hours of charge. Kylo Ren would wear these if they could fit under his helmet.
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But while the audio was better than I expected, these are still bone conduction headphones, which means they’re not great in loud environments. I was hoping these would double as passable everyday, commuter headphones, but unfortunately, listening to audiobooks or podcasts while on a loud subway or walking past honking taxis wasn’t a great experience. I had to crank up the volume, which, in turn, cranked up the vibrations until the front pieces were buzzing on my face. These wouldn’t be the first headphones I reach for if I were to run a race with cheering crowds, either. That’s a bit of a bummer, given that Suunto’s headphones are on the pricier side at $149 and $199. For reference, Shokz’s headphones range from $80–$180.

Price is also partly why, of the two, I reached for the cheaper Sonic more often. Not only is sound quality the same, but I wasn’t sold on the Wing’s extra features. The LED lights are neat, but I felt they were hard to see against my hair. (Plus, I didn’t love the Wing’s gamer Kylo Ren vibes.) As for the Wing’s head motion controls, I could never get them to work reliably. You’re supposed to be able to answer or dismiss calls, as well as skip tracks, by either nodding or shaking your head. Instead, people looked at me funny when I’d run past, furiously shaking my head because I wanted to skip to the next song.

$200

The Suunto Wing are bone conduction headphones that have 10 hours of battery life, an extra power bank, head motion controls, and LED lighting.

$149

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Suunto’s entry-level bone conduction headphones. They have IP55, 10 hours of charge, and pretty decent sound quality.

The Wing didn’t win me over with battery life, either. Both devices have an estimated 10 hours, but the Wing also has a power bank that holds an extra 20 hours of charge. It’s nice, but is it $50 extra nice? For me, not really. I mostly stick to 30–45 minute runs, three to four times a week. The Sonic lasts me around a month before needing a charge. As for water resistance, the Sonic’s IP55 is good enough for sweat and getting caught in the rain, but the Wing’s IP67 rating isn’t good enough for the pool. (Another bummer for swimmers — neither has onboard storage, and Bluetooth doesn’t work underwater.)

Ultimately, my personal hunt for a pair of open-ear workout headphones to replace my Beats Fit Pro continues. Don’t get me wrong — my time testing the Sonic and Wing has given me a greater appreciation for bone conduction headphones and why so many people go to bat for them (to the point where I called in the latest Shokz to give them another go, too). I’m just too addicted to the bass drop to say my search ends here.

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How to make it easier to use your phone one-handed

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How to make it easier to use your phone one-handed

There are going to be times when you’ve only got one hand free to use your phone. You may be walking the dog, carrying groceries, hanging on to a subway pole, or you just don’t have another hand available. But with just about every modern phone sporting a screen at least six inches corner to corner, using one hand to work your phone could be a difficult balancing act.

Luckily, both Android and iOS phones come with integrated features to make one-handed phone use less tricky. There are also some helpful options inside individual apps you can turn to. 

Methods for Android phones

One-handed mode

Android has a dedicated one-handed mode that lets you shrink any app down to the bottom half of the screen to make it easier to reach. The way to enable that mode can be slightly different, depending on the manufacturer.

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  • From Settings on a Pixel phone (or most other Android phones), go to System > Gestures > One-handed mode and enable the toggle switch.
  • From Settings on a Samsung Galaxy phone, tap Advanced features > One-handed mode and enable the toggle switch.

Either way, you can then simply swipe down on the screen to pull the top half of an app into reach. Make sure you swipe down close to the bottom of the screen, as otherwise, you’ll simply refresh the screen in whatever app you’re in. Tap anywhere above the app to go back to a full-screen view.

Android comes with a dedicated one-handed mode.
Screenshot: Google

You can adjust the Gboard keyboard to be more toward the side of the screen.
Screenshot: Google

Enable a one-handed keyboard

Whatever app you’re in, you can make sure Android’s default Gboard keyboard is easier to get to for one set of fingers and a thumb. With the keyboard on screen:

  • Tap the four-box icon above the keyboard to the left.
  • Choose One-handed from the pop-up menu.

The keyboard then pushes up against one side of the screen. Tap the arrow button to switch it to the other side or the expand button (four arrows) to go back to normal. (You don’t get this on the default Samsung keyboard on Galaxy phones, but you can always install Gboard on any Android phone.)

Make homescreen apps easier to access

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It helps if the app shortcuts you rely on most often are down towards the bottom of your home screen, rather than up at the top. You can organize this manually, but on Pixel phones you can also have a row of your most-used apps pop down to the bottom.

  • Open Settings then tap Apps > Default apps.
  • Tap the gear icon next to Pixel Launcher.
  • Tap Suggestions and enable Suggestions on Home screen.

Make browsing easier

If you’ve got a Samsung phone and you use the Samsung Internet Browser, you can move the web address and search bar down to the bottom of the screen as well. (Weirdly enough, Chrome for Android doesn’t currently let you do this, though Chrome for iOS does — go figure.) 

  • Tap the hamburger menu (bottom right) then Settings.
  • Choose Layout and menus.
  • Enable Show toolbar at bottom and Show address bar at bottom.

(Note: Some Android phones will not have the Show toolbar at bottom feature listed.)

You can find the same option inside Firefox for Android: tap the three dots (top right), then Settings > Customize and choose Bottom for the toolbar.

Methods for iPhones

If iOS is your mobile platform of choice, you can do many of the same tricks as you can on Android.

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One-handed mode

The one-handed mode that covers the whole of iOS is called Reachability. You can find it from Settings on your iPhone:

  • Tap Accessibility > Touch.
  • Turn on the Reachability toggle switch.

A downward swipe toward the bottom of the screen will then shrink down whatever app or system menu you have on screen, making it easier to get at with one hand. Tap the arrow at the top of the window to go back to normal.

You can place the address bar at the bottom in Safari on iOS.
Screenshot: Apple

The Reachability mode on the iPhone helps with one-handed operation.
Screenshot: Apple

One-handed keyboard

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The iOS keyboard has a one-handed mode as well. With the keyboard on screen:

  • Long -press on the icon in the lower left corner (it’ll show a globe or emoji symbol, depending on the keyboards you’ve got installed).
  • Tap on the left or right keyboard layout to pin the keyboard to that side.

You can use the white arrow that fills the space left by the keyboard to go back to the normal layout again.

Make browsing easier

As mentioned above, Chrome for iOS lets you move the address and search bar down to the bottom of the screen:

  • Tap the three dots (bottom right).
  • Choose Settings.
  • Tap Address bar, then (at the top of the screen) Bottom.

This is the layout Safari for iOS uses by default. If it’s been changed for whatever reason, you can reset it via Safari in iOS Settings, under the Tabs heading.

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The Gamma PS1 emulator for iOS now supports 4-player games

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The Gamma PS1 emulator for iOS now supports 4-player games

The Gamma PS1 emulator has gained a number of significant updates since it launched as one of the first console emulators for iPhones in May. Recent updates added a new “Enhance Audio” feature and better multiplayer support, joining other key updates over the last few weeks.

Developer Benjamin Stark (aka ZodTTD) told The Verge in an email that the Enhance Audio feature in his most recent update improves audio “using reverb and interpolation effects.” He also “added Multitap emulation” for games that used Sony’s adapter that expanded the PS1’s controller port count from two to four. (That was used for games like Crash Team Racing, NBA Jam: Tournament Edition, and more.)

In other recent updates, Stark added analog stick support for games that used the Sony Dual Shock controller and the ability to switch discs without going back to the main menu for multidisc games like Metal Gear Solid. He also introduced a new “Pro” upgrade for $4.99 that turns ads off entirely.

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