BlackBerry is taking a big step back from the company it used to be, announcing today that it’s planning to stop designing and building its own devices, and will instead outsource that work to manufacturers. [More]
Report: New Samsung Galaxy Note 5 Owners Will No Longer Be In Danger Of Sticking Stylus In The Wrong Way
Fear not, Galaxy Note 5 owners, you’ll no longer need to rely simply on a warning sticker to keep from accidentally breaking your stuff: Samsung’s next generation of the devices will only allow the stylus to be inserted the correct way, thus avoiding the danger of damaging the entire thing. [More]
Consumerist reader Fred was strolling through his local Home Depot in Connecticut when he checked out this Belkin power strip, which says right on the front of the package that it is “ideal” for outdoor use. Apparently, “ideal” is Belkin-ese for “not advised.”
Earlier today, Black & Decker and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission announced a voluntary recall of 192,000 Black & Decker Random Orbit Sanders after several reports that the plastic disc that holds the sandpaper to the sander can fly off and hurt the hell out of you or anyone around you.
If you were planning on picking up a sturdy switchblade or gravity knife from one of the Home Depots in NYC for your next home improvement project, or because you wanted to stab someone, you should note that they’re no longer available. That’s because last week, the Manhattan District Attorney’s office persuaded that store and 13 other retailers to stop selling such knives. They’re generally illegal in New York, and the retailers have agreed to surrender their inventory and forfeit any profits they made from illegal knife sales over the past four years.
Tom wishes Amazon would use better packaging when it comes to shipping things like hard drives. Their “frustration-free packaging” is meant to save shoppers from dealing with blister packs and unnecessary boxes. For the Western Digital hard drive Tom was trying to buy, it meant bouncing around a half-empty box from the fulfillment facility to his doorstep, where it arrived broken. Twice.
Adam writes, “I was flying out of Logan Airport and I checked my XBOX 360 in my baggage. The agent assured me that there would be no problem with it. When I got home my I found that they had put a little ziploc bag on top of my things, and the bag was filled with tiny metal components that used to be in the XBOX. It’s broken now and they’re telling me tough luck. Any advice?”
Jon spent $250 on a Western Digital VelociRaptor but what he received from Best Buy was a Quantum Fireball, a discontinued hard drive that hasn’t been sold for nine years. Best Buy, of course, took no responsibility for the odd swap, and said that Western Digital must have accidentally sold a competitor’s discontinued drive. Western Digital, of course, said that a Best Buy employee stole Jon’s hard drive. We’ve seen this happen before with Best Buy, and Jon has made it clear that he knows how to bite back…
Those wily Xbox 360 gremlins are at it again, and this time they’re cracking Michael’s game discs in little spokes along the inner ring of each disc. His customer service call went nowhere, naturally, so someone on the Penny Arcade forum where he posted his story suggested an Executive Email Carpet Bomb. The only problem is, it keeps getting sent back as spam.
Verizon Breaks Your Router With An Unrequested Firmware Update, But Won't Replace It Because It's Out Of Warranty
They acknowledge the router got an upgraded firmware image automatically (forget the fact I had explicitly disabled that feature for this very reason), but I’m shit out of luck. Even though the fact my formerly perfectly working 6100 is now bricked because of something Verizon did without my approval or knowledge, they will not provide me with a new one for free because the router is out of warranty.
Looking to spruce up the ol’ nest? Home Depot announced a big sale today, with temporary pricecuts of 5-50%, with 400 items being announced each Thursday for the next three weeks.
Reader Dan thought we’d be interested in this sign he spotted in his local Home Depot. It reads: “Why pay cash even if you could?”
Reader Jason says that the self check out system at his local Lowe’s simply refuses to process his debit card transaction properly. After the third time, he’s finally given up and will be shopping at Home Depot. Aren’t self check out systems supposed to be convenient?
Here is a phone number and email address for reaching Lowe’s executive customer service:
What’s Apple’s replacement policy for hardware failure? Our intern is having ongoing problems with his MacBook, and thought that after three large hardware failures in a row, Apple replaced the laptop—but “some dude at the genius bar just told me that was absolutely not true.” Does anyone know the official Apple party line on this issue?
A Lowe’s worker says that at least at his store they’re marking down all open-box appliances 50% to try to get rid of them before the end of their fiscal year. This type of stuff varies by store, so your best bet is to grab a manager and see if they’re willing to bargain.
Save some money by re-using your existing strings of light this Christmas—even if they’re currently acting all wonky. Here are some handy guides on how to repair dark strings of Christmas lights, whether they’re LED or the classic incandescent type. They’re fairly detailed, with a sort of techy “how things work” vibe, but contain a lot of useful information. For example, just because a string of incandescents has an AC outlet at the end, that doesn’t make it an extension cord—the more power you pull through the cord, the greater the current and the higher the risk of shorting out bulbs.