The near-clone of the iPhone called the iPod Touch is hot stuff.
Al Fasoldt's reviews and commentaries, continuously available online since 1983
T e c h n o f i l e
Cheapskate's holiday guide to iPods, HDTVs and GPS devices
Nov. 30, 2008
This is Part 2 of a 2-part Cheapskate's Buying Guide.
By Al Fasoldt
Copyright © 2008, Al Fasoldt
Copyright © 2008, The Post-Standard
The three hottest
holiday gifts this year? My guess is that iPods, HDTVs and GPS receivers will top the list. At a time when money is tight, I've got good news: You
don't have to spend a lot to get what you want.
iPods: The near-clone of the iPhone called the iPod Touch is hot stuff. You can do your e-mail on it, read anything on the Web,
watch movies and listen to Beethoven -- oh, 'scuse me, I meant the Jonas Brothers -- but you can't make phone calls. So it's much cheaper than the
iPhone since there are no monthly charges.
That makes the iPod Touch my No. 1 Hot Gift. Prices start at less than $150. Try www.buy.com or www.macmall.com.
If you don't need to do your e-mail on the run and want a tiny movie-playing-iPod with the sharpest imaginable screen, aim your
desires toward the iPod nano, my No. 2 Hot Gift. Shop the discounters (especially www.Amazon.com) and you'll find a 4th generation (4G) nano for about
The little guy of the bunch is the iPod shuffle, which I'm a little cautious about because it's so tiny you could swallow it and
not realize you ate a music player instead of a Pez. But editorial (and parental) advice never stopped teens before, so if you're looking for my No. 3
Hot Gift, try www.Amazon.com and expect to pay about $48. But watch what you put in your mouth.
What about those cute little iPod earbuds? Apple forgot to provide a way to keep them from falling out when you're about to ask
for a raise. Get the world's best iPod earbud replacements, made by Sentry. They sound fantastic and stick to your ears like a kiss. The model number
is HO229. You'll find this No. 4 Hot Gift at Big Lots and the Christmas Tree Shops. Expect to pay a whopping $4.99.
HDTV sets: Here comes Hot Gift No. 5 -- an HDTV from Polaroid with a gorgeous 46-inch LCD screen and a price that can't be beat
-- $1,099.00 -- at Walmart stores around the country. Once you have one of these, you won't be able to keep the neighbors from dropping by just as
"Survivor" is about to start.
But why not a smaller -- and of course cheaper -- HDTV? Because the one thing HDTVs do best is show an incredibly BIG picture.
Small HD sets aren't worth the money.
Besides, your computer can show over-the-air HDTV pictures nicely while you continue to act like a cheapskate. Just choose Hot
Gift No. 6, the Pinnacle PCTV HD Pro Stick for Windows or TV for Mac HD mini Stick. Try www.Amazon.com for the best price -- less than $100 for the Windows version and $20 more for the Mac model. (It comes with more features standard.)
GPS receivers: How are you going to find your way to grandmother's house now that she's moved? With a GPS, of course. Global
positioning systems are much better than they were a few years ago, and that means (because of the miracle of competition) they're much cheaper now,
So navigate to your favorite discounter for Hot Gift No. 7, the Tom Tom Model One GPS. Tom Tom talks to you to tell you where to
turn, gives you a choice of voices (we like "Richard" because he's a no-nonsense guy) and costs $150 or less.