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By Maura Hernandez from The Other Side of The Tortilla

Though my specialty is home-cooked Mexican cuisine, I love lots of other international foods. As a result, I’m always trying something new in my kitchen. If …

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Adventure In Retail: Find “Black Friday” iPhone Apps That Rise Above The Crowd

Submitted by tomyoung on 11/23/2010 – 10:27 am2 Comments

Don’t Be A Shopping Statistic

The annual “Black Friday” post-Thanksgiving shopping rush lost some of its luster two years ago when a customer was trampled to death, and bricks and mortar retailers are being advised again to take precautions.

Iphone App developers have been working to spare you from the crowd while enlarging your bargain target area. But make a self and product assessment before you take the plunge.  What do you really want, and how many hoops are you willing to jump through to get it?  Lifehacker has a good list of  resources for checking whats out there before you look around.

To the phones!

Black Friday [brace yourself, the names will get repetitive] seems one of the best out there. It  has an easy to find and use search function.  You would think that would be standard, but you would be mistaken. 

Black Friday also has social network tools which make it easy to hook up Twitter and Facebook to the app’s finds and pump them out to the greater universe.

Black Friday Wish demonstrates the need to start out with a goal.   The store search is largely limited to standard big box stores, but if you find what you want the app makes it painless to spread the word via Twitter and Facebook.  But the stand alone “Tell A Friend” function is email only.  No scans of deal ads.

Black Friday 2010 -  the name alone makes the competition seem so yesterday!

The app’s  ”Top Deals” are varied and include Groupon offerings, and its  compilation of store ads is fairly vast and easy to access, if a little eye-straining. 

But there’s no snappy means of sharing the love via social networks.

TGI-Black Friday has a very detailed category list ["Blank Media," anyone?], and while it has no Twitter or Facebook capabilities the app allows easy emailing of your search finds.  It has a vast list of shops but below that a puzzling ghost list of stores with no deals. Look upon the greyed-out Apple store and be sad [Dollar General is there too for contrast].  

Black Friday Ads does best at that, providing scads of scans of store ads and promotions. 

The app has some trouble keeping up though.  A number of stores listed in its list of most recent ads lead to dead ends.    

No Twitter, Facebook or even email functions. opens with a news page, which might give you ideas about where to target. 

The app has an electronic-heavy category list, and for individual items it lets you see how many views each item has had, giving you a rough notion of how likely something might be to sell out.  You can email item pages, but not via Facebook or Twitter.

If you decide to get out and actually brave the crowds you needn’t go unarmed. With the  pic2shop app you point your iPhone camera [any iPhone, not just 4G] at a barcode and the app gives you on the fly cost comparisons so you can buy or walk.

I used it on a children’s book and got useful information : 

But the eBay copy had better be signed by the author.

Where do you go to find deals?

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