Posts Tagged ‘amazon’

Cards Against Humanity’s Black Friday "Sale": Everything Costs $5 More

November 29, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

With pre-”Black Friday” sales starting well in advance of Thanksgiving, and some carrying all the way through to the Monday after, online holiday sales are already a joke. But the makers of the popular card game Cards Against Humanity are really driving the point home today. “We’re participating in the tradition of ‘Black Friday,’ an American holiday celebrating a time when the Wampanoag tribe saved the settlers of Plymouth Colony with incredible deals,” the game’s website reads. Their “once-in-a-lifetime” Black Friday sale: Everything costs $5 more than normal . And talk about commitment to the joke: CAH’s listings on Amazon and Shopify (Canada) have actually had their prices hiked for the day. For the uninitiated: Cards Against Humanity is a party game played like Apples to Apples. Players take turns reading off fill-in-the-blank clues, and the other players compete to submit the best answer. However, almost every card is politically incorrect, disgusting or offensive. It’s a hoot. This isn’t the first time the CAH team has monkeyed with prices. After raising more than $15,000 on Kickstarter way, way back in 2011, the game was frequently sold out due to high demand. So its creators put it all up for free online under a Creative Commons license, along with instructions for printing out the free version at home. The effect of this, of course, was that more copies of the then-unknown game were out in the wild in “pirated” form, and trotting those copies out at parties increased demand even more. These days, the $25 $30 game and its four $10 $15 expansion packs are much more reliably in-stock online, but the main game is still available to download (the expansion packs are not).

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Either Ugly Sweaters Are Still In, or Amazon Is Very Late to the Party

November 27, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

The author in his ugly sweater, circa 2009. The last time I went to a so-called “ugly sweater” holiday party, the year was 2009. And even then, the party theme already seemed old (though you couldn’t tell by the look on my face). But, alas, either ugly sweaters are making a comeback, or their (dare I call it) popularity never really faded at all. This year’s example: Amazon.com has created an Ugly Christmas Sweater page within its Clothing category, marking the first time the Seattle-based retailer has done so, according to spokesman Scott Stanzel. The e-commerce marketplace has also bought up a bunch of keyword ads on Google for terms such as “ugly sweaters,” “ugly Christmas sweaters” and “ugly holiday sweaters.” Target.com has also paid to have its own ugly sweaters show up in the paid-ad box on Google alongside Amazon — also a first, according to spokesman Eddie Baeb. Even British online retailer ASOS is trying to get in on the action, snagging some ads atop certain related search queries. It seems, then, that perhaps I’ve just gotten too old to appreciate a good fad, especially if you trust this comment from a retail analyst Reuters spoke to . “This is going to be a Christmas of ugly sweaters,” she told Reuters.

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Walmart.com Matches Amazon’s $35 Free Shipping Minimum for the Holidays

November 22, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

Walmart said on Wednesday that it is lowering its free-shipping minimum at Walmart.com from $50 to $35 for the holiday season, effective on Thursday. The announcement comes a month after Amazon raised its own minimum for the first time in a decade, from $25 to the same $35 threshold.

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5 Digital Shows Created by Grown-Ups

November 21, 2013  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Silicon Valley has a lot of things going for it: advancing technology, an attractive environment for whiz kids, a (weak) stab at meritocracy among its residents, gobs and gobs of cash. But as anybody who's ever worked in the arts will tell you, money cannot buy taste. Frequently it buys whatever the opposite of taste is . Thus, the learning curve has been incredibly steep for video companies desperate to produce the elusive "premium content" that will command the kind of money that TV advertising moves every season, or, in the case of subscriber-only services, the kind of buzz that generates subscribers to pay-TV networks. At first, video services seemed to believe that "premium" meant "not cat videos," but after wave after wave of unbearable vanity projects

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5 Digital Shows Created by Grown-Ups

November 21, 2013  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Silicon Valley has a lot of things going for it: advancing technology, an attractive environment for whiz kids, a (weak) stab at meritocracy among its residents, gobs and gobs of cash. But as anybody who's ever worked in the arts will tell you, money cannot buy taste. Frequently it buys whatever the opposite of taste is . Thus, the learning curve has been incredibly steep for video companies desperate to produce the elusive "premium content" that will command the kind of money that TV advertising moves every season, or, in the case of subscriber-only services, the kind of buzz that generates subscribers to pay-TV networks. At first, video services seemed to believe that "premium" meant "not cat videos," but after wave after wave of unbearable vanity projects

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10 Brands That Changed the World [Video]

November 20, 2013  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

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E-Reader vs. iPad

November 20, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

Q: My wife started reading e-books downloaded from the library on her iPad 2. Indoors the print is very readable, but it loses some of the sharpness in bright light. Some of her friends suggested the Kindle Paperwhite as a better reader in all types of light. What is your opinion? A: All current color tablets use a screen technology that washes out in sunlight and can become almost unreadable in direct, bright sunlight. The Kindle monochrome e-readers, including the Paperwhite, use a different technology that does well in all kinds of light. However, I have never noticed any degradation of screen readability on iPads or other quality color tablets in bright indoor light. Q: Is it fair to say that the iPad Air, like its predecessors, is designed more for content consumption than content creation, and that someone who really needs a computer but also wants a tablet (and can’t afford both) would do better with something like the new Surface? A: The iPad can be a fine productivity and creativity tool, with or without an accessory keyboard, depending on the app you are using. Business email and calendars, or the editing of office documents, work fine on the iPad, as do many drawing applications.

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iPad Mini’s Color Range Still a Shade Shy of the Best

November 18, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

Anandtech With the next-generation iPad mini with Retina display, Apple managed to create a device identical to its sibling, the iPad Air, in most ways, save size. The two tablets run the same A7 chip and use the same cameras — front and back. They feature the same design, and they are nearly equivalent in performance and battery life. But they do differ in one important area: Color accuracy. Two new analyses of the Retina iPad mini display reveal that the device has the same color gamut as the now year-old standard iPad mini. That means its color range is narrower than that of not just the iPad Air, but rival tablets like the Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire HDX 8.9. According to Anandtech’s tests of the Retina mini , the device’s Delta-E — a measurement that represents the “distance” between the color a display is told to reproduce and the color it actually shows — is much higher than that of the iPad Air. The Retina mini scored an average Delta-E of 6.5, compared to 2.4 for the iPad Air (and 3.3 for Google’s Nexus 7). This isn’t a huge deficit; the Retina mini’s display still looks great, but as Anandtech observes, it lacks the same visual punch you get from the iPad Air (compare the reds in the Retina mini and iPad Air above). Anandtech DisplayMate reached a similar conclusion in its analysis of mini tablet displays . The firm ranked the Retina mini last in a display shootout with the Nexus 7 and Amazon’s Kindle Fire HDX 7, and criticized Apple for leaving it with the same small color gamut as the original iPad mini and even older iPad 2. “That is inexcusable for a current generation premium tablet,” DisplayMate President Ray Soneira said. “The big differences in color gamut between the Kindle Fire HDX 7 and Nexus 7 and the much smaller 63 percent gamut in the iPad mini Retina display were quite obvious and easy to see in the side-by-side viewing tests.

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Google Continues to Fill Out iOS App Catalog With Music App

November 15, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

“A couple weeks from now we will launch Google Play Music All Access for iOS,” said Google Apps head Sundar Pichai at our D11 conference in May. A couple weeks … five months … what’s the difference? The app actually launched today . “It just took us a little longer than we thought to bring it up to the level of polish,” product manager Brandon Bilinski told the Verge . The app has many of the features of its Android equivalent, but lacks a crucial one: The ability to buy songs. But that’s normal these days — the Kindle app for iOS doesn’t let users buy books, either. Neither Amazon nor Google wants to pay Apple the 30 percent commission it commands on in-app purchases.

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LivingSocial to Run Discount Promotions in Wake of 40-Hour Outage

November 14, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

How low can LivingSocial’s prices go? In a bid to make amends for a rare 40-hour outage that crippled its website, apps and merchant center on Tuesday and Wednesday, LivingSocial is running promotions for U.S. and Canadian shoppers this weekend. On Friday, U.S. and Canadian customers can get 25 percent off local and travel deals by using the promo codes HEART25 and HEART25CA, respectively.

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