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The Top 5 Failed Gifts to Return after Christmas

by Tim Attwood on January 4, 2012

Change a FAIL into a WIN with the Samsung Galaxy TabIn addition to returning your collectible Justin Bieber wig and your Kim Kardashian wedding photo album, don’t hesitate to return technological gadgets that provide insufficient quality for your buck. Sure, your family meant well when they gave you that cheap Android tablet, but you especially know that you can do better. By returning some of the lowest quality gifts of the season, you will have the chance to obtain better gadgets that will make your life easier.

1. Android Tablets

Return: Low Quality Android Tablets — Lousy Android tablets like the PanDigital 72-70FW 7-inch tablets will be buggy and slow. In addition, they will run a version of Android that may never be updated. Better to put the money toward an Android tablet that you will actually be using five years from now.

Buy Instead: Exchange now for the Samsung Galaxy Tab, or wait just a little while for the ASUS Transformer Prime to come out. If you’re getting the Samsung, then go with the Galaxy 10.1 or 8.9. If you’re waiting for the ASUS, then just be aware that the Wi-Fi was having issues right before shipment. Some ASUS models were delayed until after Christmas so that the Wi-Fi issue could be ironed out.

2. LCD eBook Readers

Return: LCD eBook Readers — LCD eBook readers combine the functionality of an eBook reader with the advantages of a tablet. Unfortunately, the eBook tablet is a jack of all trades and a master of none.

Buy Instead: If you want an eBook reader, then choose an e-ink display like the Nook Simple Touch reader or the ever popular Kindle. If you want a tablet, then choose an Apple iPad 2, Samsung Galaxy Tab or wait for the ASUS Transformer Prime.

3. Digital Photo Frame

Return: Digital Photo Frame — These gadgets looked neat on Star Trek 20 years ago, but digital photo frames have become obsolete.

Buy Instead: Replace your digital photo frame with a tablet on your kitchen table or a slide show on your television provided by a media center or a game console.

4. Point-and-Shoot Digital Camera

Return: Low-End Digital Camera — Digital cameras that function on their own can easily be exchanged for a smartphone that already has a camera included. You’ll carry one less piece of equipment while enjoying the multiple advantages of a smart phone.

Buy Instead: The Samsung Galaxy S2 is one of the best Android smart phones on the market today. In addition to superior camera and video shooting technology, you’ll get an intuitive user interface and the best that the Android Market has to offer. The Apple iPhone 4S also touts an impressive camera which can put any low-end point and shoot unitasker to shame.

5. Apple iPod Touch

Return: iPod Touch — The iPod Touch is a great device, but a newer and better design is just around the corner.

Buy Instead: Wait for the next version of the iPod Touch or for the iPhone 5. The iPhone 5 promises NFC technology, which will help to transport you into the future of convenient payments and the latest in user-focused content. Also, expect an even better camera and a cleaner design.


FieldODreams January 5, 2012 at 7:36 AM

Well, I’m glad I’m not the only one who thought a digital photo frame was redundant. I’m keeping the Bieber wig, though.

HC5 January 5, 2012 at 7:38 AM

Yeah, I crossed the iPod Touch off my wish list at the last minute, when I read about the iPhone 5. I think the iPhone 5 will be the most exciting product of the year.

TeamTimmy January 6, 2012 at 7:22 AM

Your discussion of Android tablets made me wonder: which would you rather have, the Asus Transformer Prime or the Samsung Galaxy Tab? That’s a hard one, and it probably comes down to personal preferences.

KevinAFD January 6, 2012 at 7:25 AM

I am addicted to my ereader. And you’re right: you can’t beat the Nook and the Kindle when it comes to display and quality.

CocoaB January 9, 2012 at 7:52 AM

I can’t wait for the iPhone 5 and its NFC capabilities. It may be as revolutionary as the original iPhone was.

BigTimeHockeyMom January 9, 2012 at 7:55 AM

This article makes me thankful for receipts! I’m especially glad I saved the receipt for the digital photo frame I bought my husband. And I thought that’d be a great gift, too.

Brett3 January 19, 2012 at 7:06 AM

You’re right that point and shoot digital cameras have a long way to go before they can compete with the Samsung Galaxy S2 and iPhone 4S cameras. Still, I like using point and shoot cameras: I hope new ones are introduced to the market that will be worth their price tags.

sam45 January 19, 2012 at 7:09 AM

it’s mid-january and i still have returns to make. ahh! one question, though: do you think the reading experience on a tablet is as good as the reading experience on a nook or a kindle?

bangun rumah January 20, 2012 at 7:05 AM

i prefer to have samsung galaxy tab…my favourite

jreinsch May 21, 2012 at 8:19 PM

But battery life on point-and-shoot camera is MUCHHHHH better than cr@ppy battery life of a smartphone. So when you grab it to snap a photo, you aren’t constrained by the low battery paranoia we smartphone users have essentially bought into.

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