Tag Archives: technology

Disney Story Central FREE book!

It’s been a busy week-end here. We’ve traveled to the mainland for a cheer competition and our girls did amazing! After a busy day at the venue, we needed to have a little down time. There is no better way to relax than with a great book! Disney Story Central is offering “Walt Disney’s Grandpa Bunny” for Free from April 1 through April 7, 2017!

Use code BUNNY2017 to download your free copy of “Grandpa Bunny”.

If you aren’t familiar with Disney Story Central down the app from iTunes or the Google Play Store. Go to Menu and click “Redeem Code”. Enter BUNNY2017 and start reading your book! It’s as easy as that!

 

Kids Email

This year for Christmas we purchased new laptops for our children. They love to be online, but I’m often worried about their safety, especially now that they can read and write on their own. How does a mom keep her child safe while online? One way is “Kids Email” an email program designed to keep kids safer while online!

I’ve reviewed this program in the past and loved it then, and love it even more now.  When I did my last review, my daughter had only started pre-school so my needs were different than they are now.  Now she can read and write on her own and wants the independence to send and receive her own emails and I want to keep some control over what she is accessing while online.

“Kids Email” is a full fledged email system with your child’s safety in mind. It is a subscription based email system that allows you, the parent, to have control over what your child can send and receive.  You can subscribe monthly and receive 4 email accounts, or yearly and receive 6 email accounts. You can try a 30 day free trial to discover if “Kids Email” is for you!

Getting started is easy. The first thing you need to do is to create a parent account, from there you can create and manage each child’s account.  There are several areas that you can manage for each account – Safety Settings, Manage Contacts, Modify Look & Feel, Child Account Settings, Ground Child, Time Restrictions, Blocked Senders, Mail Queue and Activity Logs.

The safety settings allow you secure your child’s account based on your needs. You can allow your child to send and receive emails from a contact list that you set up, send yourself copies of incoming and outgoing emails. You can also block links, attachments and images in emails and so much more. You can save these settings for all children or set customize them for each child.

Under the parental controls you can create individualized or globalized contacts for each account. I love that you can add images so that your child can associate a face with a name on their list, making it easier for them to send emails. Messages that fail your child’s safety settings can be sent to a queue so that you, the parent, can have the opportunity see what mail was rejected and from whom. The mail in the queue can be rejected or allowed through to your child’s account.  You can also have all mail sent to this queue for your approval before your child see’s it.

There is an Activity log so that you can see what each child is doing with their email account. This is a great way to find out if your child is accessing email during school hours or other times when they should focusing on other things. If the need arises you can ground your child from using “Kids Mail”, or restrict the times that your child can access their mail, like during school hours.

You can also adjust the account settings for your child – Very Simple, Standard Kids Email or Kids Email for Teens.  The very simple settings allows you to set a simplified layout for your child, removing some menu items and making it easier for your little one to use. The Standard Kids email is a general account that is set by default. The Kids Email for Teens has a look and feel tailored to older children.

The customer service is amazing. I contacted them via their web chat and my questions were answered quickly and more importantly kindly. I felt truly valued as a customer, which is something that is often lacking in today’s society.

It’s still important to monitor what your child is doing online, but “Kids Email” adds layer of safety to what your child does online kids while giving them their freedom. Check back Tuesday January 10th, 2017 to discover what the child’s side of “Kids Email” is like!

Connect with “Kids Email” on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or their Website.

The great folks at “Kids Email” are offering two of my readers a chance to win a free account valued at $38.95 each! Giveaway starts January 8, 2017 and closes January 29, 2017 and is open to US and Canadian residents. VOID where prohibited by law.

*Disclosure: I received a complimentary subscription to “Kids Email” in exchange for me review. All opinions are 100% my own.

How to Save Money While Shopping for a Laptop

Although most people have tablet computers these days, there are still certain reasons you would want to buy a laptop. With a laptop you can do anything you can do on a computer, while a tablet computer is much more limited. The price of laptop computers has fallen quite a lot over the last couple of years. Even so, there are some simple tips you can use to save even more money. Read this guide to discover how to save money while shopping for a laptop.

 

Shop the Offers

Don’t buy the first laptop that you see, you don’t know whether or not it’s a good price. Shop around and spend time comparing all of the different deals available. Compare on the specification rather than the brand. This is much easier when buying a windows based laptop since there are many more models to chose from. When buying an apple laptop you are much more restricted in your choices. It’s also much harder to find a discounted apple laptop computer. Laptops can be very expensive and often people are not able to pay out large amounts of money straight away. More and more retailers are offering laptops on credit. This is great because it means you are able to spread the cost of the laptop you are purchasing. To top it off , some retailers are offering interest free periods if the money is paid before a certain time.

Don’t just Look Online

Online prices were almost always better than the in store prices, but things are now changing. Many stores including PC World, Argos and Curry’s are becoming increasingly competitive. Make sure you check out the websites for all the major stores to see whether or not they have a good deal. When buying from a large high street store you also get the added advantage of being able to walk away with your new laptop on the day.

When buying from some stores like Argos and PC World it’s possible to spread the cost out over several months. This can be done by buying on credit. By doing this you can save some money and make it easier to buy the laptop you desperately need.

Look for Coupons

Look around for coupon codes online. These can either be printed out and used in store, or a code can be entered into the website for a discount. These coupons are a great way of saving that bit of extra money when buying a new laptop.

Use Cashback Sites

One final way to get a bit of money back is to use cashback sites. These will allow you to get a certain amount of money back on your purchase. Just remember that the cashback isn’t guaranteed, so don’t let it sway your decision. Instead, use it as an extra bonus.

*Disclosure: This post was submitted on behalf of PennyMindingMom.com.

Three Technological Strategies That Can Make Your Company More Successful

If you’re serious about making your company as successful as possible, it’s important to utilize technological strategies to keep your brand growing. Below you will find just three of many such strategies you can implement to see the growth you want:
1. Update Your Broadband Equipment.

One great technological strategy you can use to make your company more successful is updating your broadband equipment. This equipment plays an integral role in enabling you to communicate with prospective customers and business partners, so you want it to be functioning optimally at all times. To ensure that it does, you can attain a new hybrid coupler and other broadband equipment from companies like Werlatone. When you begin looking for the ideal product provider, make sure the company has been successfully operating for at least 10 years.

2. Hire A Digital Marketing Firm.

In addition to updating your broadband equipment, make sure that you hire a digital marketing firm. The professionals of these firms are skilled in providing clients with diverse advertising services that empower them to move their brand forward. Some of the brand-building services provided by digital marketing firms include web design and development, online reputation management, content marketing, search engine optimization, and social media optimization. Make sure that the team of digital professionals you select have extensive experience in helping business owners within your particular sector.

3. Start Using Cloud Services.

One final technological technique you can appropriate to keep your company moving forward is using cloud services. These services enable you to keep documents in a central, online place so that employees can reference the information and projects they need at any time. It also enables employees to work on documents from a remote location given that the documents will be available in any sphere where there is internet access.

Conclusion

If you’re serious about moving your company forward this season, you should get serious about the use of technological services and products. Three technological strategies you can implement to get your company going and growing now include updating your broadband equipment, hiring a digital marketing firm, and using cloud services. When you implement these technological strategies continuously and in conjunction, you’ll likely witness a substantive increase in your conversion rates and dimension of industry authority.

 

This is a compensated post and has been contributed on behalf of pennymindingmom.com.

August Bluetooth Stereo Speakers MS515

August SpeakersI’m sure you’ve all heard the saying “two heads are better than one”. Well, today we test if the same is true for portable speakers in our review of August’s MS515 Bluetooth Stereo Speakers.

Audio Cables & Connectivity:

These speakers support both Bluetooth v4.0 (up to 10m / 32 ft) and the standard 3.5mm audio-in jack as input from your device. Bluetooth setup was quick and painless, and well documented in the manual. August also includes a 1m /40in audio cable in case you don’t already have one.

AugustSpeakers2The two speakers connect to each other via one of two included audio cables (1.2 m / 4 ft and 3 m / 9.8 ft). The connector cables both have a red rim around the top of the outer sheathing so you don’t mistake the audio-in cable for one of them. You’ll also notice that they have one more black ring on the pin than the audio-in cable. I was very pleased to find such a long cable included for connecting the two speakers. It gives you so much more versatility with speaker placement, and saves you the hassle of tracking one down and ordering it separately on it’s own.

Battery:

Each of the speakers has it’s own 1600mAh Lithium battery. The charging cable will actually charge both simultaneously, it has two microUSB ends and a single normal USB end. Charging time takes about 3.5 hours and play time is listed at 15 hours, but in my experience I’ve gotten more than 15 hours of play time between charges.

Portability:

Nearly all of today’s mobile devices have a built in media player of some sort, which is great, but to keep their size down sacrifices need to be made. Sound quality is one of them. Some devices are better than others, but you’ll never get the quality of sound (with today’s technology) in a tiny phone/tablet speaker as that from a larger speaker(s).

The MS515’s are portable, but due to the fact that they are 2 speakers (stereo) instead of 1 like many other portable bluetooth speakers, they do take up some extra space. Each of the two speakers measure 106.5 x 74 x 69.4 mm (4.2 x 2.9 x 2.73 in for you imperial folk), and weight 260g (9.17 oz). Compared to my other name brand BT speaker at 125 x 53 x 61 mm (4.92 x 2.09 x 2.4 in) and 295g (10.4 oz), that’s around double the space/weight. Not a big deal to me personally, but If you’re tight on bag space this may be something to keep in mind.

Sound quality:

Although slightly larger than the typical single speaker setup, the MS515 has the advantage of clear, crisp, well balanced stereo sound at a fraction of the cost. Each of the speakers are 5w, and were more than sufficiently loud for any of my indoor uses (which included folding laundry in the furnace room while the furnace+washer+dryer were all running).

Conclusion:

The August MS515 are attractive with a solid build quality. They come with adequate documentation and above average length of cables (and a shorter cable option as well in case you don’t want the extra length to tie up). Although slightly larger than single speaker options, the sound quality is comparable but with a lower price tag.

For more information on the “August Bluetooth Stereo Speakers MS515” please visit the August International website.

 

*Disclosure: I was give a complimentary pair of “August Bluetooth Stereo Speakers MS515” to facilitate my review.  All opinions are 100% my own.

August Noise Cancelling Earphones – Model EP715

AugustHeadphonesNoiseCancelIt’s that time again! Tonight is our second review of an August product, the “August Noise Cancelling Earphones – Model EP715”. So without further delay, let us proceed.

These earphones use active noise cancellation. Basically, they use a microphone to pick up external sound waves and then produce a sound wave through the earphones that matches the amplitude but with an inverted phase. The waves combine to form a new wave and effectively cancel each other out.  Because the microphone is listening for sound waves and then trying to match the amplitude after the fact, the technology works best for steady constant noise. Lower frequencies work best (like the droning from an engine). James May did a great 3 minute explanation on Brit Lab’s youTube channel for anyone who may be interested.

With how the technology works in mind, I used the noise from a bathroom fan to test how well the noise cancellation feature works. Maybe it was because I was skeptical of how well this technology worked until I tried them, but I was very surprised by how much of the fan’s noise was eliminated as soon as I turned the noise cancellation feature on. I’m really looking forward to being able to use these in the summer while I’m cutting grass, or on my next flight. The difference is amazing.

The sound from these headphones is quite reasonable. I’ve read from multiple sources that generally headphones with the noise cancellation feature are not quite as good as their normall headphone bretheren. I, however, am not an audiophile. I thought they sounded fine, and left them on for an hour to keep listening to my music after my initial test. The recipients of my test phone calls also had no complaints with the quality of the microphone.

The noise cancellation feature of these earphones comes at a price. First, this technology requires an additional power source to work. The EP715 comes with a small battery pack that uses a AAA battery (connected via microUSB). It’s quite light, but it does add some weight. If your device has OTG capabilities and a microUSB (or lightning cable) slot close to the headphone slot, you don’t need to use the additional battery (although it is recommended in the instructions).

The people who would most likely be looking for these particular earphones, are those who want them specifically for the noise cancellation feature. And at their price point, they fulfill that requirement well. If you’re looking for earphones for everyday use, with lots of controls, you’re probably better off with something like the August bluetooth headset we reviewed yesterday.

For more information on the “August Noise Cancelling Earphones – Model EP715” or to purchase please visit the “August International Website“, Amazon.com or Amazon.ca.

*Disclosure: I was give a complimentary pair of “August Noise Cancelling Earphones – Model EP715” to facilitate my review.  All opinions are 100% my own.

*This post contains affiliate links.

August bluetooth sports headphones, model EP614B

AugustHeadphonesWelcome to another review from PennyMindingMom.com. Today we’re checking out the “August bluetooth sports headphones, model EP614B”. There are three different colors of this model, with the last character of the model number signifying the colour (B=black, W=white, R=red).

I’ve been using earbuds for quite some time now, but have yet to pick up bluetooth headset. Now that I have, I think I would have a hard time going back. It’s so much more convenient to work without the hindrance of a cable dangling in front of you. Although they’re marketed as “sports” headphones, I’ve also been using them while doing chores around the house and I’m loving the freedom.

Let me say how light these earphones are. Weighing in at 17g, you hardly notice they’re there. They come with three sets of earbuds (sm/med/lg) and the stem that holds them comes off of the driver unit at a slight angle that makes these buds fit quite comfortably in the ear for extended periods of time. The over-ear hooks are made of soft rubber and hold the earbuds in place nicely as well. The arm that connects the earbuds to the ear hooks is adjustable to fit various sizes, and the cable connecting the two ear pieces is approx 61cm (24 inches) in length.

August International

August International

You’ll notice there aren’t a ton of controls on this unit, just three buttons. One marked with a picture of a phone, one with a “+” symbol, and another with a “-” symbol. Each of these buttons serve multiple purposes, depending on how long you hold them down. I won’t go into the details of each function (the manual covers it quite well, and rather simply), but I will mention that there is an led that flashes different colors, and some beeps, to help indicate which function is currently being presented.

The sound produced by these headphones is quite nice, especially when you consider the price point. The mid and highs were clear, and the bass was reasonable. I don’t like cranking the volume when I’m using headphones anyway, so it was perfect for me. There’s no mention of noise cancellation in the documentation, but even on low volume it drowned out the noise of my 4 and 6 year old bickering over a toy (two thumbs up for that!). The only thing that took me a few minutes to get used to was the very slight white noise like sound that was present when no sound was being sent from my device to the headphones. This sound disappears quickly as the headphones appear to go dormant after a few seconds of inactivity (likely to aid with power consumption). As for the mic, the recipients of my test phone calls had no issues hearing or understanding me over the phone.

Now for the tech specs. This is a bluetooth 4, class 2 device (good up to approx 10m/33ft). I tested it through a wall at approx 30ft and still had a signal, although at that distance it would occasionally cut out briefly as I moved around that room. Within the same room I had no issues. The manual states the battery is 60mAh and is said to last for 3.5 hours (approx 1.5h to charge). I’ve used them for about 1.5 hours listening to music so far with maybe another 15-20 minutes of talk time, but no signs of the battery fading yet. The headphones’ frequency response is 20Hz-20KHz, and the speaker output is 2 x 9.5mW.

Overall I’m super happy with the headphones and continue to use them. If you don’t want to take my word for it, check out some of the amazon (.com and .ca) reviews and compare. Goodbye until next time!

For more information on the “August bluetooth sports headphones, model EP614B” or to purchase please visit the “August International Website“.

 

*Disclosure: I was give a complimentary pair of “August bluetooth sports headphones, model EP614B” to facilitate my review.  All opinions are 100% my own.

*This post contains affiliate links.

IntelliGym 2015

USA Hockey - IntelliGym Review

USA Hockey - IntelliGym Review Every player experiences highs and lows, hills and valleys, slumps and hot streaks. I’m not a goal scorer, but even as a “stay at home” D-man I still need to be able to move the puck up to our forwards quickly and efficiently. Sometimes slumps are not the result of lack of on ice practice or conditioning, but how you aree approaching the game. A couple of bad games can get your head and cause you to tense up. When you tense up, your reaction time slows down. The IntelliGym is all about improving your on ice perception and reaction time.

While nursing some injuries, I took some time off from the IntelliGym. Once I started playing again, i was out of the habit of training regularly. Lately I’ve been having trouble making smart plays, so I started using the IntelliGym again. Within 2-3 sessions, I noticed I was more quickly able to find an open forward to hand the puck. It almost feels like the game slows down around you, and you have more time to make your move. I’m even sneaking into scoring zones once or twice a game and getting some chances to put the puck in the net. Two years in, and I still notice benefits when I use the product.

For more information visit:

USA Hockey IntelliGym:
http://www.usahockeyintelligym.com/

**UPDATE 2012:
USA Hockey The Hockey IntelliGym: UPDATE 1 YEAR LATER

**Update 1.5 Years Later:
USA Hockey The Hockey IntelliGym: UPDATE 1.5 YEARS LATER

**Update 2 Years Later:
USA Hockey – The Hockey IntelliGym 2 Years Later

**Update 3 Years Later:
http://www.pennymindingmom.com/2015/01/intelligym-2015/

I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

How to get a Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 7 inch (wifi) for $100

tabletChristmas is coming up, and we weren’t sure what to get for our daughter. All we knew is that we wanted to pick up something sooner than later (last minute Christmas shopping can be so stressful). We had toyed around with the idea of getting her a tablet, since she loves to play with ours so much, but we wanted to limit our spending to around $100.  We were able to find lesser known name brand tablets for that price, but I was concerned with support issues. That’s when I received an email from PayPal regarding a promotion they were running in conjunction with SHOP.CA:

 

“We’re working with SHOP.CA to give you an exclusive limited time offer when you pay with PayPal online at SHOP.CA. We have given you $25 towards your purchase of $75 or more at SHOP.CA. For an additional $25 off, sign up for free at SHOP.CA. and spend a total of $100 or more. Terms apply.”

 

$50 off of a $100 purchase isn’t too bad of a deal in and of itself, but why stop there? If you sign up for an Ebates account, you can currently get %20 (yes, 20…not 2….20!!) cash back on purchases from SHOP.CA. Also, if you do some searching, there are many promo codes you can use when you checkout to get an extra $15 back. Did I also mention that SHOP.CA has their Galaxy  Tabs (7, 8, and 10 inch versions) on sale at the moment as well? The Galaxy Tab 3 7 is $175. Here are the details of our purchase, and links to sign up for your accounts:

 

Accounts  you’ll need:

SHOP.CA – http://www.shop.ca?plcktb=YwNzXW8H0

Ebates – http://www.ebates.ca/referrer?referrerid=XI%2BUjdRzPbo%3D

PayPal – https://www.paypal.com/ca/webapps/mpp/home  (Be sure to sign up for their mailings with your account to get the $25 promo email).

 

Steps:

– After you’ve signed up for your accounts and received your promo mail from PayPal. Log in to Ebates, search for shop.ca, and click on the “Shop Now” button to link you to SHOP.CA. This step is very important or you won’t get your cash back.

– Find the item you’d like to purchase, for me it was the Galaxy Tab 3 7 and add it to your cart. Click on “checkout now” if you’re ready to checkout. You’ll be prompted to login.

– In the promo code box, enter “SAVE15” and apply the promo. This will knock $15 off your purchase (I forget the minimum purchase for this one). This code can only be used once per account.

– Your rewards balance should show as $25 if you’re a new user. In the box next to “Use your rewards on this purchase:”, enter 25 and click on “Apply Rewards”. This will knock another $25 off your purchase.

– Just fyi. The total used to calculate the %20 cash back is after any promo codes + rewards balance has been removed, and after taxes. My total was $157.39, which gave me $30.80 cash back from Ebates.

– Select the bullet “Pay by PayPal” and then click on “Continue to PayPal”. When you go to pay your bill, it will show the total before the $25 PayPal bonus is removed. If you log into PayPal and check on the details of the transaction afterwards, you will notice that they charge your bank/credit card $25 less than what was on the bill. I paid $132.39.

– Ebates pays out every 3 months. Their next payout is due on November 15th. I have my account set up to pay out to my PayPal account. I have $30.80 in my balance from the tablet purchase.

 

When it’s all said and done, I will have paid about $102 for the tablet. If you’re comfortable with the Hipstreet tablets. You can get one for even less. Hope this helps someone else save a few $$$ for Christmas!

 

 

** This post contains affiliate links.

Unlocked Google Nexus 4 35% off!

lg-nexus-4-300x231It was approximately one year ago when I posted my thoughts on how to save a few dollars on your cell phone bill by switching to prepaid. Since then I’ve been spending $12 a month on my cell bill by using mostly text messaging and a low cost text package. I’ve also managed to get my parents off of their $35 per month plan and onto a pay as you go plan where they’re spending between $12 to $15 per month.

If any of you are looking to buy a phone but not be locked into any particular carrier or package, Google recently dropped the price of the Nexus 4 on the play store from $309 down to $199. That’s a phenomenal price for a full feature phone with no commitments.