InvisibleHand Blog

Watch this space for the latest news about InvisibleHand project. We'll blog here about new retailers, new countries and new features.
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Vote for InvisibleHand for Best Add-On!

Fantastic news – InvisibleHand has been nominated for Best Add-On in About.com’s Readers’ Choice Awards 2012!!

If you agree we’re the Best Add-On, then express this agreement in the form of a quick and easy vote here.

You only have until Wednesday 21st March to vote – so quick get those fingers clicking!

The winner will be announced Friday 30th March and will have been voted for by ‘the people’ (readers of About.com).

 

We’re keeping out fingers crossed here :-)

Tablets to overtake PCs and laptops?

Speaking at a conference recently, Apple’s chief executive Tim Cook said he expects tablets to soon be more popular than PCs and laptops - coincidentally just before the rumoured iPad 3 launch in March. It’s an understandably confident statement to make considering the success of the iPad and iPad 2, but with decades of laptop and desktop development behind them, it’s hard to see why they would want to disregard their previous enormous success so quickly.

Or maybe they know something that we don’t (not for long!)

Can you see yourself ditching your chunky desktop or slow laptop for a slick tablet anytime soon? Would you be comfortable having all your documents/music/personal files on such a small and delicate device?

The touch screen keyboards take a while to get used to, but with extra accessories available including a wireless keyboard – it seems as though the tablet can try it’s best to be the slick and contemporary younger model, but it’s still trying to get back to the simple functionalities a laptop offers. Using a tablet is a pleasant vacation from the slow starting, heavy laptops you’re accustomed too, but once you’ve loaded all you need onto your tablet surely this will be the same slow paced device only on a smaller and more breakable screen.

We can see tablets becoming much more popular, especially if smaller lower priced models are introduced, but it’s hard to see them overtaking PCs and laptops in households as well as in the market.

But what do you think? Have you been leaning towards the tempting tablets? Or are they only something you’ll try if you can find a low priced one to trial?

Let us know what you think on here, email, Facebook or Twitter!

 

Industry News – Amazon to venture offline

We saw the launch of the Kindle Fire in the US last year, with similarities to Apple’s iPad, but now Amazon has gone one very large step further. Amazon has announced they plan to open a shop in Seattle, selling Kindles and Amazon-published books. But is this incredibly successful online retailer going backwards?

They plan to stock books which they usually stock online, and can’t be found in any other US bookstore. This will be a plus for convenience, quick transactions and reaching a different (potentially older) market – but what do you think?

Will you still be checking online for the best price? If other low price trusted retailers decided to go back to the high street and malls, would you turn your back on your laptop in favour of the shops? Perhaps there is a revival of the high street in the horizon, or perhaps it’s a case of ‘works for some’.

We think it’s an exciting development but we like to find the best price online, shopping in lots of places at the same time by sitting in one place!

InvisibleHand comes to Opera!

We’ve received many many emails over the past year from users who are waiting for InvisibleHand to come to Opera – well today is your lucky day!

InvisibleHand is delighted to announce our extensions is officially available to Opera!

Just feast your eyes on this beautiful picture below…

IH for Opera!

Enjoy and don’t forget to let us know what you think via email, Facebook or Twitter :-)

This just in…

A brand spanking new feature has just been added to InvisibleHand for all our US users on Chrome!

InvisibleHand now finds the latest hyper-relevant daily deals for users while they are searching online for a restaurant or service.

Try it out – go to Yelp in your Chrome browser and type in any category from “dentist” to “massage” in the area of your choice and your favourite InvisibleHand notification will discreetly appear when it has automatically found relevant deals to show you.

These deals come from well known sites such as Groupon and Living Social,  just like our well known retailers, so you can now also trust InvisibleHand to find you the best daily deal!

Just another genius idea from the InvisibleHand team ; -)

To see it work before your very eyes, simply uninstall the current InvisibleHand and download the newest version from our website (any issues with how to do this please let us know at info@getinvisiblehand.com).

In case it’s all too much to take in, we’ll clarify this for you: InvisibleHand can now automatically find US users the lowest priced products, flights, hotel bookings, car rentals and now Daily Deals (on Chrome in the US)!

What more could you ask for? (If you do have more to ask for – drop us an email!)

Will DVDs be ditched for unlimited online film access?

So the US anti pay-per-view phenomenon, Netflix, has finally crossed the pond to the UK this week – but what does this mean for the future of DVDs? Are they destined for the charity shops?

The introduction of the latest online multi-film channel with a monthly fee for unlimited content has got the InvisibleHand team’s brains ticking, we agree it is the future – for many a long awaited step forward – some are even happy to see the back of DVDs. Some say it’s much easier to store your film collection online, it’s portable, and does anyone watch a film more than twice? Is there a need to hold onto a DVD to watch it again when it can be conveniently found online at any time?

A big selling point for online film retailers is that the user can sign into their account on any device – your smart phones or your laptops – and watch the films anywhere they go. The ‘unlimited access to film and TV’ angle tips the scales in the favour of online film retailers too, the customer doesn’t have to travel anywhere to pick up or return a film, and they can get much more for their money – in these cash strapped times. Well known film rental chains are on the way out, with the US already seeing a major rental chain disappear from the high street, so surely online rental (by the month) is the next logical step? The rental now moves from one film to a catalogue of films, due to the increased appetite for online content consumers have now developed – and are used to, with the introduction of music software which offers unlimited access for a monthly fee.

It is now more common to buy DVDs online as they’re much cheaper, would it make a difference if the transaction was made shorter by the customer seeing the film as soon as it was found online? The television market is already ladened with “+1″ channels and TV on demand players for the major channels, this solution combines the already successful TV players with a match for films too. It’s a similar argument to the ongoing rivalry of mp3s vs CDs/vinyls – the physical disc over the mass storage of digital music.

Ultimately watching films over the Internet for such a low price, coupled with unlimited access, is a bargain that is hard to turn down. Most TVs being sold this year are smart TVs which will have the capacity for apps such as Lovefilm or Netflix to be downloaded, so by next year this could be a firm fixture in the majority of households.

Are you ready to move online? Or will you find it too hard to let go of your growing DVD collection?

 

Last minute Christmas delivery dates…

Uh-oh. It’s only three more working days until Christmas, and you’ve still got some presents to get – but no time to get to the shops (or sensibly you just don’t fancy getting crushed in the panicked mob).

Don’t worry!

We’ve pulled together a few online retailers who are still delivering before Christmas, you’ll have to make your mind up quick though!

Delivery deadlines for the US:

Buy.com

21st December, ‘next day air’ delivery if ordered before 12pm PST

The Home Depot

21st December, for express delivery

Newegg.com

21st December, two day delivery if ordered by 3.30pm

22nd December, next day delivery if ordered by 3.30pm

Overstock

21st December, for 2nd day shipping order by 1.59am EST

22nd December, for next day shipping order by 12pm EST

23rd December, for Saturday delivery order by 11am EST

Walmart

21st December, ‘Rush shipping’ cut off date

23rd December, last day for ‘pick up today’ if picked up by 6pm

Bestbuy.com

24th December, order by 3pm local time for store pickup

ToysRUs

24th December, order by 4pm to pick up at store

Delivery deadlines for the UK:

Marks & Spencers

21st December, for clothing, home, beauty, wine, gifts & entertainment

HMV

21st December, order by 12pm for express delivery

The Hut.com

21st December, for express delivery

John Lewis

22nd December, click and collect until 7pm

ToysRUs

22nd December, order by 4pm

Argos

22nd December, order small items by 1pm for delivery

Amazon.co.uk

24th December, for evening delivery at £7.48 per unit, order by 8.30am GMT)

 

HAPPY SHOPPING!

 


 

InvisibleHand’s Review of 2011!

Check out our fun infographic below to see what’s been happening in 2011 for InvisibleHand:

InvisibleHand Infographic

Brits rank UK hotels worst in Europe & US, with popular holiday destinations Turkey and Greece runners up…

Research from one of our recent surveys found that surprisingly a quarter of Brits didn’t think much of UK hotels – so little in fact that they came top in a poll of worst hotels!

Perhaps the stereotypical rainy weather in the UK literally put a dampener on the hotel experience, whereas hotels in Italy and Portugal had the sun on their side? One annoyance that was clear was dirty rooms and noisy neighbours – 94% asked were frustrated with dirty rooms and 84% with noisy rooms.

Portugal came out top, with only 1% voting the popular holiday hot spot as a source of hotel misery – the USA came third with only 3% disliking the hotels across the pond.

We know how important hotels are to your holiday, 6 in 10 of you echoed this by stating hotels can make or break your holiday! That’s why we added a new feature to our superb price finding extension. As well as automatically finding the lowest price for products you search for, InvisibleHand now automatically finds the lowest price for hotel rooms you search for too – anywhere!

Not only can you book the lowest priced hotel room with our real time price comparison, but you can also see the highlights from reviews in an easy to view summary, to double check the hotel meets your expectations before you get there!

Hotel Review

There is also a map showing the hotel you are viewing, plus alternative hotels and places of interest.

Hotel Local Area Map

What else could you need to know? (There are pictures too of course, we all know that’s most important after price!)

InvisibleHand adds Hotels and Car Rentals!

Just in time before the winter blues kick in, InvisibleHand has completed the price comparison holiday package by adding hotels and car rentals to our growing roster!

So, InvisibleHand will help you to automatically get the lowest price on products, flights, hotels and rental-cars. Now you can afford that much needed holiday, or treat yourself to another one!

The new features are just as easy to use and work in the same way as searching for anything else using InvisibleHand. When you’re using any of your favourite travel sites, InvisibleHand will automatically search for the best price on the hotel you want and check to see if there are better deals available at nearby hotels.

You can view all of your search results with pictures, reviews and prices in an easy to navigate layout.

Similarly, when searching any popular car rental site, InvisibleHand will look for a better deal on the dates and location you’ve already specified.

Our recent study comparing car rental giant Hertz and InvisibleHand, found that over a set period in October out of 20 popular cities InvisibleHand found the lowest prices for 18 of the cities. All savings were worth more than £10 and the average saving was £47.77, the largest saving £101.61 in Rome!

InvisibleHand covers most car rental companies and hotels, so we know we can provide the best price.

Why not try it out today and let us know what you think?