By Rebekah Samuel - November 22, 2018

Hello holiday shoppers!

I was thinking this week about all the tech that has been purchased in previous years and thought how helpful it might be to quickly throw together some of my own recommendations regarding the latest tech before you end up with purchases you aren't happy with.

Here is a list of some of the best specs on the market to look for assuming you want something that will last and what "Black Friday deals" to avoid:


You may be very tempted to purchase that cheap under $200 or sometimes even $300 laptop but check these specs first!

  • 500GB-1 TB hard drive
  • SSD or HD? SSD will be faster if you're looking for speed.
  • RAM higher than 4GB. Typically the fastest performing laptops are running 16GB and up. But 8 is decent.
  • Processor i5 or i7? i5 is decent if you have a good SSD and RAM built into it. If not, then go for the i7 if the price is right.
  • Make sure it has a good graphics card and the screen is true color.
  • Windows 10 Operating System
  • Check battery lasting time. This can vary depending on the model.
  • A good 1-2 year warranty.

Do some research on reviews on the model and the max upgrades it can have with RAM. An upgradeable model will give you more life out of it. 

For laptops: $350+ in value will be good to look for. HP and Dell I have found are decent models. DO NOT BUY HP STREAM. I have personally had problems with this model when working on client's computers. Sometimes Toshiba. Just check reviews before you purchase!


The latest craze is the newest Macbook Pro. However when dropping your hard earned money on these bad boys, keep in mind these things about Apple products:

  • Apple tends to cause their models to go obsolete or slow down when they produce new models. This has been more prevalent in recent years. 
  • The RAM in more recent models is soldered to the motherboard which makes it impossible to upgrade unless you are a whiz at soldering. :D Most likely that isn't the case, so be aware that what you buy you are stuck with. 
  • 16GB and above for RAM is best for the latest OS High Sierra. 
  • Look for 500GB and up for the HD. You can also buy SSD drives on these.  
  • i7 processor will be your fastest model. 


  • Look for 1TB-2TB for regular drive backups. If you have heavy files like photos and videos, consider a larger amount.
  • Seagate brand is the best brand I have found on the market and Staples and Walmart run these for double the space deeply discounted.


  • It is most likely that earlier models will be going on sale for Black Friday, so watch again for RAM size, HD size, and consider the size of the operating system and how much space it takes up.
  • Look at warranty and be prepared to work with cloud based services in these smaller capacity machines.


You really can't go wrong with most of the smartphones on the market right now. They have vastly improved from where they used to be. Still there can be hangups and bad deals to fall into. Keep in mind these things:

  • A good camera. It's very popular these days to have a good smartphone camera and video. The higher the pixels, the better the quality.
  • Beware of deals with your phone company. They like to lock you into a deal with them, offering you a supposedly free phone. However there always is a catch and in the future they will end up getting their piece of the pie. Also any deals of pay monthly can end up costing you more in the long run depending on the length of contract.
  • RAM space. The basic 8GB just isn't cutting it anymore. With OS on phones increasing in space, you will find you run out of space for apps, photos, and videos quicker than ever. Look for 32GB and above. 
  • Some popular and good brands, Samsung Galaxy newer series, Google Pixel, the newest iphone models (just be aware Apple is becoming exclusive with their repairing).

There is so much more tech out there to explore, but these are some of the top purchases that happen on Black Friday/Cyber Monday that I wanted to cover. 

Some shopping tips. 
Check Ebay and Amazon first! Alot of times there are lightly used products being sold.
Be safe when purchasing on ebay:

  • Establish communication with the seller prior to purchase
  • Check the seller's reviews
  • Look at return policy
  • Check for any warranty
To boost the savings here are my favorite rebate sites to work with. Click each one to sign up with my referral code and earn extra just for signing up and making your first purchases. :)

(Now up to 10% on many stores 
for Black Friday/Cyber Monday)

(Sometimes this has higher percentages 
than Ebates!)

(This is a chrome browser add on that
finds deals and codes for you all over the internet
whenever you visit sites. I have saved a ton using this!)

If you're shopping for groceries or stocking up 
on every day essentials I use these apps:

Fetch Rewards (A receipt app in exchange for points
that go to gift cards)
Put in my referral code: "V2JTY" when you sign up!

I hope this information was helpful to you. Please share this post with your friends to pass on the savings by clicking one of the sharing methods below:

Follow and like my page on FB for tech tips, scam alerts, internet security, and more by clicking below!

Disclaimer: All of these specs and products are by my own recommendation 
based on my own experience and knowledge. I am not responsible for any purchases made 
that turn out to be negative experiences or defective products. 

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