I was cleaning out my gadget drawer and I found an old microSD card. It was one of the largest microSD cards around at the time. I bought it for my digital camera and remember being amazed at how much space it had. That SD card held a whopping 128 MB!
That’s right, only 128 MB.
That used to be plenty of space for my camera. I had to empty it out every once in a while, but that didn’t bother me in the slightest. I could hold 128 MB of data on my phone!
Nowadays, that 128 MB chip wouldn’t fly. I’d want at least a 128 GB chip, if not 256 GB. Minimum.
The Lifecycle of Tech Gadgets
As new technology is being released, it renders old technology useless a lot of the time. But when technology becomes obsolete, it doesn’t get pulled off the shelves immediately.
This means a lot of useless tech gadgets are still being valued by some people. Below, we have seven gadgets that you should never spend money on.
1. Don’t Buy Cables That Cost More Than $10-$15
Your cable breaks or you’re stuck in the middle of nowhere and you have to charge your phone. Your phone is about to die and you need it to give you directions back home.
You run into the nearest convenience store and grab a cable to keep it from dying. You make it to the checkout only to find that they are charging you $30 for the cable.
Is It Worth It?
The role of the cable is to transport power from the power source to the phone. It doesn’t play a part in the speed that your phone charger. The power source and the plug are responsible for the that.
For that reason, there is no logical way that you should spend more than $10-$15 on a cable. In fact, most cables that you find for $5 or less will be perfectly fine.
In most cases, what you are really paying for is extra marketing or packaging for the cable.
This doesn’t apply for just charging cables either. If you ever went shopping for an HDMI cable, you will know what I am talking about.
If you compare prices for HDMI cables, you will notice some are selling for $10 and others are upwards of $100.
They may advertise the expenses brands as higher performance options, but there is really no such thing. Just like phone charging cables, HDMI cables all offer virtually the same quality. They just do it at vastly different price points.
Are There Any Exceptions to This?
The only exception to this are cables that are designed for a specific type of device. Sometimes they don’t translate perfectly to other devices.
You may come across a lot of different third-party cables that are designed for specific brands. If you want to use it for multiple devices, these are the only cables that I would recommend staying away from.
2. Don’t Pay for Cable TV Anymore
The days of cable TV charging us a fortune are over. These days, we have so many choices that it doesn’t make sense to pay hundreds of dollars for traditional cable packages. Services like Hulu, Netflix, and Sling provide virtually anything that you could once to watch for a much lower price.
The beauty of these services is that they are a lot cheaper than what cable companies charge. Netflix, for example, costs $11.99 per month. When you compare this to the hundreds of dollars that DirecTV charges per month, they don’t stack up at all.
Free TV Options
Not many people know this, but you can watch certain HD channels for free using an antenna. These antennas mount on your wall right next to your TV.
They look aesthetically pleasing and they only cause a one-time fee of $15-$20 on average. You can watch channels like CBS, NBC, ABC and more with an antenna without the monthly fee.
No Long-Term Commitments
If you want to maximize your media selections without compromising your budget, the most effective strategy is to rent the services a few months at a time.
Subscribe to Netflix and go through their library of movies for a few months. Once you have watched everything that you want to see, cancel your membership and startup your Hulu subscription.
These services don’t make you commit to long-term contracts so you are free to add and drop them on a month to month basis. Most people are happy enough with the services that they keep them going year-round, however, this is a tip that will make it even easier on your wallet.
3. Never Fall for In-Game Purchases
Why are so many apps free? Because of the in-game purchases.
The road to riches in the app world revolves around in-game purchases. Develop a great app that gets the players hooked and offer it to them for free. Once they start playing, charge them extra for upgrades, levels, and additional features. Games even get away with charging for costumes for your personal avatar inside the game.
Small Fees Add Up
It doesn’t seem like much when you pay $.99 for a plot of land in Farmville, however, these small charges can easily add up. A few dollars here and a few dollars there can add up to hundreds of dollars over the course of the year.
The truth is – the real value in the game is the part that you have access to for free. The extra add-ons are completely unnecessary.
You can get just as much, if not more enjoyment by spending your time playing the next free game as opposed to shelling out your hard-earned money on in-game purchases.
4. The iPad Pro Is Not Good Value
While Apple has made a ton of amazing products over the years, the iPad Pro is not one of them. The real problem with the iPad Pro is that it is a huge tablet that is limited by its operating system.
It uses an operating system that was designed to work on the tiny iPhone screen. Some Apple users will enjoy the familiarity that the iPad Pro and its iOS provides, however, it leaves a lot to be desired.
The iPad Pro can’t handle Flash, which means there’s a lot you will be missing out on that any other tablet or laptop would be able to handle. This is just the tip of the iceberg with the limitations that the iPad Pro has.
5. Digital Cameras Are Useless Now
There was a time in the early 2000’s when digital cameras were the hottest gadgets on the market.
Now, thanks to the amazing advances in smartphone technology, digital cameras took a backseat.
Smartphone developers have been prioritizing the development of their camera technology ever since the camera phone was first released. It has got to the point where the latest iPhone can take down most digital cameras on the market when you compare them side-by-side.
If you have a smartphone, there is no reason to spend any extra money on a digital camera. You already have a high-quality camera sitting in your pocket. To the digital camera manufactures, I’m sorry. But it really is a pain in the ass to carry another heavy device around, when a smartphone slides right into my back pocket.
6. You Don’t Need a Car GPS or a Traffic Subscription
We have smartphones. There is no need for car GPS devices anymore, just like there isn’t a need for digital cameras. Our smartphones can handle real-time traffic updates and reroute you when a better route appears. Not only that, but your smartphone gives you more options than a car GPS does.
You can use Waze, a GPS app that allows users to input real-time traffic updates on a minute to minute basis, or you can stick to the traditional Google Maps app. There are tons of other traffic apps that you can use and they are all for free.
Traffic subscriptions are even worse. For one, their user base is small. This means there are fewer people to feed information into the app. These subscriptions are usually less developed than the popular free apps (Maps and Waze). This means they’re going to provide you with lower quality traffic details.
Why pay for a subscription like this when a better product is already available for free?
Stay Away from These Obsolete Gadgets
When it comes to these 6 gadgets, keep your budget tight. There’s no reason to overspend on them, and for some of them, there is no reason to spend at all. Don’t fall for expensive “high-end” brands because in most cases, you are only paying for the extra marketing and packaging that they use to sell you with.