As Published In
Oracle Magazine
November/December 2013



Mash Up

News • Views • Trends • Tools


Comparison Shopping Apps


Rather than being forced into a state of perpetual distraction . . . we can approach information technologies in a way that is mindful and nearly effortless and that contributes to our ability to focus, be creative, and be happy.
Alex Soojung-Kim Pang,
author of The Distraction Addiction (Little, Brown and Company, 2013)
Nearly 6 in 10 smartphone owners comparison-shop using a mobile device while in a physical store, according to Parago.1 If you’re holiday shopping, these apps can help.


The Find
In addition to scanning barcodes and comparing prices from major online and physical retailers, this app lets you set price alerts, provides coupons, and locates nearby stores offering your products. Free (iOS).

Nextag Shopping
Search for products from thousands of merchants, then sort results by price (including tax and shipping), ratings, and more. The app also includes product reviews and can send price-drop alerts. Free (Android, iPhone, iPad, Windows Phone)

This companion app to claims to find the lowest price on millions of products from thousands of stores. It includes product and merchant reviews and calculates taxes and shipping. Free (Android, iPhone, iPad).

RedLaser Barcode & QR Scanner
Created by eBay, this app compares prices from thousands of retailers, including local stores in the US. It also offers coupons and integrates your credit cards and loyalty cards. Free (Android, iOS, Windows Phone).

1 Source: Dynamic Pricing in a Smartphone World: A Shopper Showrooming Study


Scan in 3-D 

Need to get a realistic printout of your desktop gnome or corporate mascot? The MakerBot Digitizer Desktop 3D Scanner uses a camera and two lasers to create a standard-format 3-D digital file of any physical object up to 8 inches in diameter, 8 inches tall, and 6.6 pounds in weight. That file can then be printed on a desktop 3-D printer or shared with the growing online 3-D printing community. 3-D modeling or CAD experience is not required. US$1,400 (without gnome).


Big Data on the List

Nearly 50 percent of marketers surveyed say that data is the most underutilized asset in their organization. Less than 10 percent currently use the data they have in a systematic way, and just 18 percent have a single, integrated view of customer action. However, 71 percent plan to implement a big data analytics solution in the next two years. More than 2,200 marketers worldwide were surveyed.

Source: Teradata Data-Driven Marketing Survey 2013


Cloud Services Continue to Grow

Use of all types of cloud services steadily increased from 2012 to 2013. Results from a survey of nearly 150 people in June 2013—mostly attendees of Cloud Computing Expo—were compared with results from the same survey conducted a year earlier.


Source: TwinStrata   

Get Fit in Style

While personal activity trackers are nearly ubiquitous, the new Misfit Shine adds a stylish touch. Like competing fitness trackers, Shine monitors walking, biking, and sleep, and syncs with a smartphone or computer via Bluetooth. But its polished aluminum finish, and ability to be worn as a wristband, lapel pin, or necklace, lets you take it from marathon to black-tie cocktail party with ease. It even doubles as a wristwatch and uses a standard replaceable battery. Shine is also water resistant. US$119.95.



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