True story: I recently wrote about the Samsung Galaxy Fit, a popular fitness band that was for sale at $ 69 at Amazon. The saving of $ 30 made for a pretty good deal. But then I saw the PriceBlink bar at the top of my browser ̵
If I had actually shopped for the Galaxy Fit, I would have saved $ 18. Not too shabby considering my total effort was zero. That's why I installed PriceBlink in the first place: it follows me on the interwebs and warns me about better deals elsewhere. It is definitely a useful Amazon hack, but it also works at around 4,000 other online stores.
PriceBlink is a browser plug-in and compatible with the desktop versions of Chrome and Firefox. I know: I say the words & # 39; browser plug-in & # 39 ;, you say, & # 39; smell you later! & # 39; That's weird, because it's not the nineties. But I think the potential benefits outweigh any light performance hit (and I have not noticed one to talk about it).
Once it is installed, you just shop as you would normally. For each product you view, PriceBlink indicates whether there is a better deal somewhere else or, if not, the next best price. You can also click on the Compare Prices drop-down list to see what other stores charge, including sales tax and shipping.
Do you want to add a product to your wish list? Click on the heart icon in the toolbar. You can also view the price history of a product (very valuable information to have) by clicking on the line graph icon.
The other magic trick of PriceBlink is finding coupon codes, although these do not automatically apply to you like other coupon tools. In fact, you often have to open one or two extra tabs to get a code, which is annoying.
Concerned about privacy? According to the FAQ page of the tool, "the PriceBlink add-on sends a request to our servers that contains information about the product you visit. PriceBlink does not collect or store any personally identifiable information."
A few caveats
I think that's fine, but I recommend being cautious when trusting this or another price control tool. First, make sure that when you click on a PriceBlink link, you are looking at exactly the same product in the next store. For example, with TV & # 39; s there can be quite a few different models within the same series. There is also the chance that it will send you to a used or refurbished version instead of a new one, which happened to me a few times.
You also want to make sure that you end up with a reputable seller. While I was watching the AirPods ($ 130 at Amazon) Pro at Best Buy, PriceBlink pointed me to an eBay seller who offered the earplugs for $ 50 less. Amazing, right? Upon closer inspection, this seller had zero ratings and the estimated shipping window (from China) was between three and 12 weeks – two large red flags. Pass.
But as long as you are careful, PriceBlink can really save you money. Otherwise it can save you time: you don't have to visit one store after the other to see which one has the best price.
Cheapskate from CNET searches the internet for great offers for technical products and much more. Follow the Cheapskate on Facebook and Twitter for the latest offers and updates. Find more great purchases on the CNET Deals page and view our CNET Coupons page for the latest promotional codes from Best Buy, Walmart, Amazon and more. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Find the answers on our .