New Website Decide Helps You Avoid Gadget-Buyer's Remorse

Q: Sometimes I'm afraid to buy a new laptop or phone because of how quickly technology is changing. If I don't purchase something the day it comes out, I fear a new one is just around the corner. How can I avoid this?


A: Apple fanatics have a hard time keeping up with the latest gadgets to be released by the company. Sometimes it seems like, the week after you upgrade your phone, another iteration of the iPhone is on its way. Same, too, with the MacBook. But imagine what it's like for those people who just want a new phone -- or a new laptop or a new camera or a new.... During the two years it was in stealth mode and gathering millions in pre-launch venture capital, Decide did some research that shows an average of six new laptops are released on the market every day and a new television and new camera are released every other day.

This has led to a big problem in the consumer tech world: buyer's remorse, which is exactly what your question refers to. Mike Fridgen, the CEO of Decide, an e-commerce destination that launched earlier this week, thinks of it as the problem. So he set out to solve it.

Using two simple commands -- wait and buy -- Decide helps you determine whether right now, this minute, is a good time for you to purchase a new gadget. Visit the site and type in the product you're thinking of buying and let Decide do the work for you.

A quick Decide search for an Apple MacBook Air, for example, tells me to wait for a new model. But that's not all; Decide explains why it made that decision. It tells me that an upgrade to the product is rumored to be coming in July, 2011, (and provides a link out to the source) while providing a timeline of prices for the MacBook Air over the last few months. "Prediction," the site reads, "Prices will drop or hold steady ($29 on avg.) 90% Confidence."

It's fun to play around the site and get a sense of what products have already become outdated. But if you're actually looking to make a purchase, Decide is worth a look. Even if you're not interested in replacing your digital camera this afternoon, you can create an account and sign up for email alerts when a specific product you've got your eye on is upgraded from wait to buy.

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Image: Decide.

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Nicholas Jackson is a former associate editor at The Atlantic.

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