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Best Selling Products for Saturday, Oct 12, 2019

Katrina Reyes
October 12th, 2019 · 82 min read

Toys & Games

Calico Critters Baby Nursery Set

Calico Critters Baby Nursery Set

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Description

Style:Calico Critters Baby Nursery Set The Baby Nursery Set is a perfect furniture set to add to your Calico Critters house. The set comes with a cot, high chair, and slide for a cute nursery room. The mobile can be attached to the cot. Accessories such as a bottle, plate, and toys are also included. Cot, mobile (post, pivot, arms, crab toy, fish toy, chicken toy, butterfly toy), slide, high chair, mattress, bed cover, cushion, photo album, ball, plush toy, rattle, mug, plate, spoon (total 20 pieces).

Notes from the Community

Cute calico critters as always. Functionality/quality, questionable as usual. Some accessories are just flimsy cardboard/cardstock. One of the outfits had the shoulder strap rip off when trying to put it on one of the calico critters baby bunnies within the first 5 minutes of opening. That was disappointing. Other than that setback, and not even bothering to use the flimsy cardboard/cardstock accessories, its a nice set. Some pieces are really tiny (as with most calico critters sets), so be careful or they will be easily lost/sucked up into the vacuum. My 6 year old adores this little set, even with all of the tiny play pieces put away until shes a little older and wont lose them. There really are a lot of pieces that come with this set, and they are each individually adorable and clever, and well made! I wont lie, Ive been pretty much obsessed with Calico Critters since I was a kid in the 80s. It makes me so happy to share them with my little one today!!😊 Really cute set. I purchased as a Christmas gift for my daughter. With most holidays gifts her interest wains after a couple of days, not so with this toy. She has spent many hours playing with it. Warning: this set doesnt come with a critter. I knew this when I purchased, and my daughter already had baby critters. However, I felt it was important to highlight this fact for those considering this toy. Also, this set has has very small pieces, which is great for older children who want lots of realistic details, but it could be a concern for homes with babys and toddlers. Love all the products by this company, I just wish that they were a little stronger! It seems like all the chair or table legs are pretty brittle and break very easily. Your child has to be pretty careful, and in the excitement of a game that can be hard to remember. Otherwise, we love them and have many sets! The attention to detail is great! I think I am more obsessed with Calico Critters than my kids. They are so stinkin cute. My only problem is that so many of the accessories are so small. You are buying a set and then in a week you end up losing half of the set not because it was misplaced or broken but because they are so small they get lost. Anything - this is a cute set. Its simple and small and just an add on. We use it for the house and school that are already have. Calico Critters is well build, dont tend to break but like I said just small! Great for my 7 year old twins and 5 year old. I made my grandkids a dollhouse out of an old bookshelf and have started filling it with Calico Critters furniture. I cant believe how cute and well made these sets are for the price. SUPER GLAD I got these and will continue until the house is completely furnished. Thanks for the great products! My 9 years old daughter loves Calico Critters and spent loads of time playing with her friends and by herself. Very well designed in every single detail. A bit pricey, though. Adorable as always. Unfortunately weve already lost two of the tiny pieces, but such is life with Calico Critters! I bought it here fir $7 less than our toy store. Im all about supporting local, but that is a steep mark up. Anyway, Im super into these things…and so is my daughter!


Hasbro Connect 4 Game

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Description

Configuration:Connect 4 Product Description Challenge a friend to disc dropping fun with the classic game of Connect 4! Drop your red or yellow discs in the grid and be the first to get 4 in a row to win. If your opponent is getting too close to 4 in a row, block them with your own disc! Whoever wins can pull out the slider bar to release all the discs and start the fun all over again! Connect 4 and all related characters are trademarks of Hasbro. Brand Story By See all Product description

Notes from the Community

Hasbro Connect 4 Game was one of our daughters absolute favorite games to play, growing up. In fact, she and her dad played a game of it almost every night as part of her bedtime routine. Our daughter now has kids of her own and it is time to continue the tradition of playing this game. We ordered it at Christmastime and have been looking forward to playing it with the grandchildren. It got set aside, but has now been noticed again by our grandson and he is very excited to play it. Got it out and put it together, ready for his next visit. Looks about the same as it did back then. There is some fun to be had here. Looking forward to many years of making new and fabulous memories of Connect 4 with the grandchildren. We absolutely love this game! The sad part is that the world has become accustomed to cheaply made products. Unfortunately, this is just a price we have to pay if we want affordable products. Hasbro has done a wonderful job ensuring that Connect 4 continues to be a part of our lives, but if youre looking for the sturdy game you had when you were a kid, this one falls a little short. The rack is flimsy and made of thin plastic, and the discs lack that heavy checker weight, BUT they totally work. Just mentioning it for the people who are nostalgic, this game just feels a little different. Our kids dont know the difference and it certainly doesnt matter when you measure the memories that were making with them, but it is nice to remember some of the differences from when we were kids. I really loved Connect 4 when I was a kid. Then I bought this for my 3 year old and 1 year old. Although they are not playing by the rules, putting the discs into the slot keeps them busy. Its also a good tool to teach colors and counting as well as learn about taking turns. A+ plus in my book. Anyone can play it. Its ready to go out of the box. You can play for minutes or an hour. Losing a disc somewhere under the couch isnt the end of the world. Kids different ages can still play with each other. This is an essential go to the toy closet sort of item. I was afraid a new one like this might be cheaper feeling or flimsier than the older ones, but was pleased to see that while it wont survive really rough handling the toy is durable enough for normal little kid play. This is the same classic game that I played when I was a kid, and now I can play it with my children! The goal is the same—to get four colors in a row. At first my children struggles with predicting where a player might go next, but after playing with it for a while, theyve really started to get the knack for it. It has helped them to develop critical thinking skills. We got the game at Christmas, and its now eight months later and they still pull it out to play all the time. I think this one will be a keeper. OK, This one was the biggest hit of all. Of course, she beat the pants off of me but had a great time doing it. Grandparents beware - your little grandchildren love playing games and they are good at it. My 7-yr-old granddaughter can play me like a fiddle and beat my butt on Connect 4. Finally after beating me time after time, she admitted that one of her pre-school teachers had taught her game strategy on winning in this game and she took pity and tried to teach me some of her tricks. :) Gotta love the little children. I bought this to relive my childhood memories back in elementary school, but also to teach my nephews how to play Connect 4. Its so fun and easy to learn. I am a cynical uncle by making my nephews eat the Beanboozle Jellybeans if they lose (which is 98% of the time). Other than that, very quick, easy, entertaining, and builds strategies for young children where their brains are still developing via the Connect 4 game (probably not the jellybeans part). The classic game, just like I remember from my childhood. (Or is it? I remember the pieces being red and black, not red and yellow, but maybe Im confused…)Introducing it to my daughter, shes loving it.For classic gameplay, this does the trick. However, this original design only allows classic gameplay, due to an all-or-nothing mechanism to remove pieces from the bottom. Apparently other versions of this game exist that allow you to remove pieces one at a time, which allows additional variations of gameplay. Check out the Wikipedia article on this game for descriptions of those variations, if interested.So, 5 stars for the classic game, minus one star for the lack of the more advanced one-at-a-time removal mechanism.


Jenga Classic Game

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Description

Size:Classic Product Description Its the classic block stacking, stack crashing game of Jenga. How will you stack up against the law of gravity? Stack the wooden blocks in a sturdy tower, then take turns pulling out blocks one by one until the whole stack crashes down. Is your hand steady enough to pull out the last block before the tower collapses?. Brand Story By See all Product description

Notes from the Community

We love Jenga! Weve played it for years - at home, on vacation, at friends houses - its a great game and everyone we know loves it, and this giant Jenga has kicked it up a notch. First off, let me say that this isnt Giant as much as it is Large. Giant makes me think of Jenga pieces so big that it takes two hands to pick them up, and there are companies that make yard-sized Jenga knock-offs with pieces that are three feet across. This is not that. Its Jenga x2: the pieces are exactly twice as big as the original Jenga pieces. 6 compared to 3 - so everything is doubled. So, its large, but still manageable. You can still play it on a coffee table or dining room table, you dont need to clear a place on the floor. You do have to be careful though because when the tower comes down those big pieces fly! Its no more or less fun than the original, but it is a lot easier for guys with big hands to play… we have friends who alway find the original Jenga frustrating because their fingers are too big to delicately remove the small pieces. They love this one though! Jenga is a great game and this is an excellent addition to the Jenga family.PS - Writing reviews has become an accidental hobby for me, and it always makes my day to know that people find my reviews helpful (and if not, why.) Also, if you have any questions, clarifications, or comments please feel free to leave a comment below. I usually respond pretty quickly and almost always within 24 hours. Our family grew up together in some sort of Jenga haze where at every get together this was dragged out and we played for hours.Fast forward 15 years and I got this for my 3 year old (yeah, yeah, he doesnt have the manual dexterity or patience…Stop interrupting me) to pass that haze onto the next generation.Guess what, he loves Jenga!! Just not in the ultra competitive, beer fueled way. He views them as blocks, so we spend an hour or so each episode building stuff and knocking it down.Eventually we will start actually playing Jenga, but for now, his journey towards the haze of my youth is wonderful.Peace, No BS Guy If somebody doesnt know what Jenga is about: it is a game where you build a tower out of wooden blocks (3 pieces per floor), and players are taking turns to remove blocks out of the tower. If the tower falls apart on your turn, you will lose the game. It is very simple and fun game.If youre looking for a game as described above, then you cant go wrong with this product. Amazon delivered it in timely fashion as usual, and the product is exactly what you would expecta bunch of wooden blocks that you can use to build a tower. Also, this comes with game instructions and some kind of stacking aid made out of carton. I tossed the stacking aid to trash, since I find it to be much faster to build the tower by hand without the aid.In my opinion, the game is at its best when played with two people, but theres no limit of how many people can participate in the game. I would recommend using a stable table to play the game on, but a dangling Ikea table (or equivalent) surely adds some challenge.In a good company this game is much more fun than any video game on the market, making it a bargain at less than $10. This game will also work anywhere with decent gravityas long as you are able to find a stable surface. In conclusion, I would recommend Jenga to anyone living on a planet that has a sufficient gravitational force to hold the tower together on the surface, which includes all the areas to which Amazon.com delivers. The classic Jenga set brings back great memories growing up and playing with it as a youngster. But I also remember back in the day of a sturdy clear plastic stacking sleeve. Just hope the current sleeve, which obviously didnt meet my expectations, will last…the reason for mid 3-star rating. I bought the classic to pair it with my recent purchase of the colored wooden blocks of animal cartoons by Sun Top (Top Bright?) since the childrens set didnt come with a stacking sleeve. Nevertheless, Im truly having fun with my grandkids and they love it as well and now I have a game to introduce to my senior friends. Why not offer a sturdier plastic stacking sleeve as an upgrade/accessory item? This set of blocks had a bit of a smell when they first arrived (like pressure-treated wood). At this point, I dont know if it will prove to be more durable than the other blocks game we purchased at the same time or less so.For the kids, this was the perfect size. Not so big that it could really hurt the little kids, so long as an adult was there to watch the fall and to keep exposed body parts (e.g., tootsies) away from the impact zone.The storage for this is the box it came in. Not a big deal, but Im sure it will fall apart some day. Well find something else to put the pieces in by then, Im sure.The other set we purchased:1. came with a bag (not super robust, but strong enough).2. is much larger and more suitable for adults to play3. didnt have the same smell the Jenga pieces did. They just smell like whatever wood they were cut fromConclusion: this set is pretty great, with only a few inconsistently-sized blocks (smaller).I like our larger knock-off set better, but theyre both 5-star products…so far This is a really good game. It actually improves the focus of kids, because if you will lose the focus you may lose the game. The best part about it is, you can plaiit alone or with more players so you are not bound by number of players. I buyed it for my 8 years old son because he liked it so much. We have to actually remove each block at a time on your turn and make sure the tower should not loose the balance. Overall I like this game because you can spend hours playing this without getting bored as well you can finish it early if you have limited time. Overall worth its price and good game.


Electronics

Fire TV Stick 4K with Alexa Voice Remote, streaming media player

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Description

Notes from the Community

I received the Fire TV Stick 4K on launch day. I own the previous model and this is a much better experience. First off the remote is a huge improvement. The power button on the remote can turn on my tv, my receiver, fire stick, and switch the inputs automatically so the fire stick is on screen and ready to go with just one click of the power button. Its really nice. This is how it should have been all along. It gets even better though… lets say my TV is already on, and my receiver is set to a different input such as my FIOS tv box? All you do is click the home button on the remote and the remote switches the receiver to the correct hdmi input on the receiver for the fire stick! One remote to rule them all, and yes it controls volume on the receiver too! This is excellent. Its highly configurable. The setup is quite nice. You can define which inputs get picked when hitting the power and home button. You can define which device the volume buttons control. Amazon has done a great job with the Fire Stick 4K.Its faster than previous fire sticks. No more menu lag. Things are smoother and faster overall. Ive used Roku, Chromecast Ultra and Fire Stick… I like them all for different reasons. I also dislike chromecast because 5.1 audio will not work on my receiver because chromecast refuses to support Dolby Digital or DTS 5.1. Fire stick has no problem handling DD5.1. This makes my plex and netflix experience much more enjoyable. The remote is better than not having a remote (chromecast). Rokus are very nice as well. All 3 of these options are great in their own way and frankly I had thought fire stick was the least desirable but recently Ive come to realize I prefer Fire stick so I pre-ordered the 4K fire stick and I could not be happier with it. Amazon needs to keep up the good work. The 4K stick is a solid product and an excellent upgrade from the previous model Let me tell you, I was super excited for the launch of the new FireTV Stick with its leading edge technology and processing power. Well, its got that but theres a couple bug, game breaking problems I have with this thing.1) The Amazon platform is basically retooled Android, which is a crap interface. Its cluttered, redundant, and Amazon being Amazon wants you to use all their services over everyone elses so not only does their menu get in the way but the top third of the home screen is promotions for whatever they want to push.2) Also because its Amazon they want you to use THEIR streaming services to rent movies so much so that there is no Vudu or Google Play app available to install. If Prime Video had a decent selection of rentals (it doesnt) or a halfway usable interface (it doesnt) I would have less of a problem.3) Our FireTV Stick has issues with flickering and sound dropout. Tech support immediately supplied a series of less than helpful troubleshooting tips. Did you try a different TV? Did you try a different HDMI port? Despite my Roku working just fine. I elected to return this since I was already fed up with the closed interface and terrible menus.Slightly less of an issue but still annoying is the inability to completely turn off HDR. Its either always on or adaptive meaning the content dictates HDR which is a problem especially with Netflix (which is calibrated too dark on some TVs)For now Im happier with my Roku Stick despite less robust HDR support.Edit: updated my review for the following:- Amazon reached out immediately after my review to get additional feedback and to offer more support. That actually means something these days. Ill continue to monitor for problems- I upgraded to a new TV and this makes the HDR issue better since it actually looks good on this TV. Problem still stands of not being able to disable HDR entirely if needed- The smart controls feature is nice. I can use Alexa to change TV inputs now.- Less flickering on new tv but still have sound dropoutsHowever my issue with not having a way to watch VUDU/UV movies is a huge issue. On top is that, MoviesAnywhere doesnt tell you which movies were transferred over in 4K. So while the titles may sync, in cases of certain films (eg Deadpool 2) you only get the HD version and not the UHD/HDR one you paid for. Until this is fixed Ill leave my review at 3 stars. Our main streaming service is DirecTV Now, and this stick doesnt run it right. The app seems to works and then just freezes. When I go to run a speed test, the connection is super low, and then ramps up over time back up to full speed. Its as though the app crashes the stick. Other things seem to work fine, but not the app we use the most. Will return and continue to use gen 2 and gen 3 devices. Too bad.UPDATE: So, I deleted DirecTV Now and did a fresh install. For the past three days, things actually worked well and considered revising my rating. Then I tried to watch a little Sunday football. CBS froze over and over again and caused the app to continually crash. Thought maybe it was the local CBS stream because other channels worked fine. Then I tried the Roku I have in my kids room, DirecTV Now worked fine. Figured Id give it another go for the second game, same result. Watched Rams/Seahawks in my kids room with no issue on the Roku device. Again, other apps seem to work fine (I think) on Fire, but this stick isnt right just yet. Id wait for problems to work itself out.


Fire TV Stick with Alexa Voice Remote, streaming media player

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Description

Notes from the Community

Although there are already 9,000 plus reviews and no one will ever read this, I think its worth noting how easy it is to setup the remote to power on not only the television but accessories as well. Remember those code books from days gone by where you had to enter a number of codes to get a remote to work with a receiver, or a sound bar? This thing does the work for you. It EASILY sets up to work both my TV and my SOUND BAR. The fact that my TV is one brand and my sound bar is another is no problem. I love not having to fish for 3 different remote controls whenever I want to watch Amazon Prime or Netflix. WARNING! I didnt realize that when you buy any Amazon device like this one (or a tablet, etc) it comes preloaded with your info. Thats great.But if you gift it to someone else it has all your info, and they can buy & install apps, make in app purchases and so on. You then have to rely on them to figure out how to switch it to their Amazon account…if they even have one.EASY FIX. I guess I just needed to mark the This is a gift or the This order contains a gift box available on the Cart page. High speed internet, wi-fi, etc., did not get to my neck of the woods until very recently so my experience with these devices was limited. The first was chrome cast which was good except I had to bring the laptop into the living room (I dont care to watch on a small screen) to be able to cast to the TV. I know, a not a real big problem, but still awkward. Also, it was a bit tricky for me to set up. I finally took the plunge and purchased the fire stick. I have read some reviews that are quite technical and way above my pay grade. I will keep this simple. The fire stick has been very, very, good for me. Set up was a snap. I dont have a smart TV, just a fairly new, cheap, HD. The picture is great and so is the sound. If there are technical glitches I havent noticed them. I still need practice negotiating the screens, but that will come with time. I am getting used to talking to a machine, but still say please when addressing Alexa. I have already spent a couple of snow days catching up on two seasons of The Blacklist and have almost gotten through Bosch . I still havent had time for the movies. There is so much available it boggles the mind. I guess all of this identifies me as an old person. Well, I certainly am and for me the fire stick is the best thing to come along since the VCR. I would highly recommend it for my fellow oldies who may be a bit leery about trying something out of their comfort zone. This isnt a review, but it is more of a statement… I just got my firestick a week ago and so far I am so unhappy with it. the setup and everything went fine its just that on many of the movies I choose I have audio but no video, another issue is many of the basic channels that I thought were basic like lifetime and CBS and certain other ones I have to pay for to see. I thought they were many more free channels. Another thing, is the buffering. Most everything that I have tried to watch just keeps buffering and I can watch the same movie on my phone or my tablet which is the same Wi-Fi connection that I use for my TV and I can watch the whole movie before I can see anything on my TV. Im about to send this back I dont understand what the big deal is with this item. and I tried to get local channels I can only get one local channel and then I cant even see it live. It just shows me what the latest headlines were on that news show. Please tell me something I dont know or that it will get better somehow. I dislike the fact that I had to pry the remote open with a pair of my scissors. I wish there was a simpler way to open it. Maybe I did not possess the strength to push it open. Also my firestick restarts itself randomly. Support helped me and I thought it fixed it but it did not. Its overheating!! Ive had these issues before but not straight out the box. Really upsetting. We owned the initial firestick and had used it regularly for years. A remote issue forced us to replace the unit, and Im so glad we did! The responsiveness and speed of the new version is amazing! No more lagging or double click. The new remote is also a huge upgrade with the voice control option. Its a must have! This is an upgrade from my original firestick. The installation was so easy, Amazon is really good with their step by step instructions. It works perfectly but the thing I like even more than the voice control is the size of the remote. That original remote was ridiculously small and easy to loose.


Echo Dot (3rd Gen) - Smart speaker with Alexa - Charcoal

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Description

Notes from the Community

Sound quality is the best Ive heard on a speaker of this size!!! Definitely worth paying a little extra for this one over the 2nd generation model. Im not going to discuss the functionality as theres tons of info already out there. One important note: If you set up the Alexa app on your phone, IT WILL IMPORT ALL OF YOUR PHONE CONTACTS. I didnt think I gave it permission to do so but Alexa did indeed import my contacts! You may have read stories how, WITHOUT YOUR KNOWLEDGE, Alexa can record whats being said in your home and then send it to ANY or ALL of those contacts! Yikes! And, I wont want any of my kids to accidentally send messages to or call people on my contact list. So, if you want to keep your contacts from Alexa and prevent that from happening heres how I did it:Before installiing the Alexa app on your phone, export your contacts to a file and save it for later. Then, go back to the phone and delete those contacts (dont worry, youll import them back in later). Now, install the Alexa app on your phone and go through the set up process. At some point, youll have the option to allow Alexa to automatically import any additions to your contacts. Please disable that option. After youre done with the installation, youll notice there are no contacts in your Alexa app! Now, you can import your contacts back into your phonebook using the file that you initially created and youre good to go!If you already installed the app but want to delete your contacts from Alexa, its not too late. Simply export your phone contacts to a file and save for later. Then, delete the contacts from your phone. Now, open the Alexa app and click Contacts. On the Contacts page, click on Import Contacts and enable it by moving the button to the right side. This will cause Alexa to replace your existing contacts with the now empty phonebook. After a few minutes, your Alexa contacts will be gone. Go back and disable Import Contacts to prevent Alexa from importing them in the future. You can now import the contact file that you created back into your phone.Of course there may be some contacts you do want to use with Alexa. I simply added them manually by clicking Add Contact.I hope this info is helpful as I wasnt able to find an easy way to manage Alexa contacts. Ive been a happy owner of a 2nd generation Echo and three 2nd generation Echo Dots for a year now, and I was glad to add this to the arsenal. After using it for a few days I am generally pleased with it, but it does have limitations, especially when it comes to sound quality (no surprise there!). I will start by summarizing whats new about the 3rd Generation Dot, then Ill describe the device in more detail, and finally Ill add some thoughts about how to choose which Echo device may be best for you.The most obvious update to the Dot is the new look: its as if someone took a 2nd generation Dot, inflated it with an air pump, and wrapped the edge in fabric. And its not bad!Whats different/updated in the 3rd Generation Dot:1) It is slightly larger than the 2nd generation device, measuring 3.9 wide x 1.7 tall (2nd gen was 3.3 wide x 1.3 tall), and the top and bottom edges are more rounded. It is also substantially heavier at nearly twice the weight of the 2nd generation model.2) The 2nd generation Dot came in two color options (black and white), each of which had a shiny plastic exterior that I personally thought looked a little cheap. The 3rd generation Dot has a fabric exterior which gives it a classier appearance, and its available in three colors: heather grey, sandstone, and charcoal. The fabric and rounded edges give the 3rd generation Dot a much softer look than its predecessor.4) The 3rd generation Dot has a larger speaker (1.6, versus 1.1 on the 2nd gen), which is paired with a larger driver as well. Ill talk below about the effect this has on audio quality.5) The placement of the microphones is slightly different: while the 2nd generation had seven small far-field microphones on its top surface; the 3rd generation has four microphones.---------------------------Overall appearance---------------------------I purchased the sandstone version. The cloth is a polyester woven fabric made up of lighter and darker shades which gives it more visual interest than if it were just a solid, uniform gray. The neutral color blends in with nearly any decor, and the cloth gives the unit a softer look which is great for areas of your house where you dont want something that screams Im a device!Aside from its larger size and slight convex bulge, the top of the device is nearly identical to that of the 2nd generation Dot: it has four buttons (volume up, volume down, microphone off, and an action button) and a multi-colored light ring around the top edge that tells you about the Echos status. The side of the device has an input for the power cable and a 3.5-mm output jack.One notable improvement is the shape of the power cable, which sits flatter against the wall than the 2nd generation Dots cable (see my photo to see them side by side). This may sound like an insignificant change, but it makes a huge difference if you want to plug the cable into an outlet that is behind a piece of furniture.-------------Setup-------------Setting up the Dot couldnt be easier. You simply plug in the power cable, then use the Alexa app on your phone to connect the Dot to your WiFi network. The app leads you through everything, and the whole process takes less than a minute. Boom.----------------Audio----------------I did a side-by-side audio comparison of the 2nd and 3rd Generation Echo Dots, first with music (orchestral, a jazz combo, and some AC/DC) and then with a few newscasts. Everything does sound better on the 3rd generation Dot, but to be honest, the sound is still pretty anemic. Compared with the 2nd generation Dot, the sound is slightly fuller, not as annoyingly tinny, and has a small amount of bass presence (not much, but the 2nd generation had none). Newscasts and other spoken texts benefit from the fuller sound as well, but the difference is more pronounced with music. Just for fun, I also compared the 3rd generation Dot with my 2nd generation Echo, and THATS where I noticed a big difference. Yes, the new Dot sounds a bit better than its predecessor, but they both sound weak compared to the full-sized Echo. (To its credit, Amazon doesnt claim that the Dot has room-filling sound.)Ill be blunt: I really like the Dot, but I dont use it to listen to music. At all. With so many other speaker options out there, theres just no reason to use this as your primary music device.-------------------------Voice recognition-------------------------As I mentioned above, the number of microphones on the top surface has dropped from seven to four. Im not sure what the rationale for this was, but after testing the Dots ability to pick up my voice from different distances and angles, I didnt notice a substantial difference in the overall microphone sensitivity compared to the 2nd generation Dot. Like the other Echo devices, though, it seems to have more difficulty detecting voices that come from below it (which happens if I talk to it while Im on the floor playing with my daughter).-------------------Functionality-------------------The bottom line is that the overall functionality — what the 3rd generation Dot does — is nearly identical to that of the previous generations (and of other Echo devices, or at least the ones without screens). This is largely because the Alexa assistant software on which all Echos operate is run on Amazons cloud, not your individual device. This means that as Amazon adds new features and updates to Alexa they automatically become available on all Echo devices. So, you can use any of them to:- Stream music via WiFi from multiple sources- Control smart home devices with your voice- Make hands-free calls to other Echo devices or phone numbers in North America- Make purchases from your Amazon Prime account- Listen to news feeds, podcasts, etc.- Do anything else in Alexas ever-growing skill set, such as make shopping lists, set timers/alarms/reminders, play games, tell you your daily schedule, and any other skills Amazon dreams up for Alexa in the future.If you dont want to use the Dots built-in speaker, you can connect it to your own speakers via Bluetooth or by using the 3.5-mm output jack.One new feature for the 3rd generation Dot is a little puzzling to me: You can pair two Echo Dots in a stereo mode, giving you essentially left and right speakers. I tried this briefly and the results were pretty much what I expected: yes, its stereo, but its still weak sound! You can also pair an Echo Sub with the Dots, creating a little 2.1 sound system. Frankly, Im not sure why you would do this; if I were setting up for stereo sound, I would want speakers that are designed for decent audio performance, not two Echo Dots.Alexas skill set is enormous and always growing. In fact, part of the fun of owning an Echo device is seeing what new skills Amazon comes up with (even if many new skills are just silly or entertaining). Ill mention two of my favorite skills here: the Flash Briefing and the drop-in feature. The flash briefing is fully customizable daily digest of news and other information which you can hear any time by asking Whats my flash briefing? There is a huge list of content you can add to your briefing including news updates, weather forecasts, sports and traffic updates, and educational snippets along with many that are just humorous or entertaining. Using the Alexa phone app or your Echo account page you can select exactly what content you want in your briefing and in what order you want to hear it. For example, I configured mine with news feeds from NPR, BBC, and Reuters. I love having an on-demand synopsis of the latest news from my favorite sources.My other favorite feature, drop in, essentially opens a two-way communication channel between any two Echo devices, sort of like an intercom. Simply ask Alexa to drop in on [the living room, the kitchen…] and you are instantly connected. My wife and I use this feature to communicate from opposite ends of the house. You can turn drop-in capability on or off for each of your Echo devices individually, and you can also choose whether each device can drop in with ANY Echo device or only those in your own home.[Note that the drop-in feature is NOT the same thing as Alexas hands-free calling feature. Hands-free calling allows you to call most phone numbers and Echo devices in the U.S., Mexico, and Canada from your Echo by saying your contacts name or number. Just like with a phone call, the other person must choose to answer your call before you can communicate. By contrast, with the drop-in feature communication is instantly established. For this reason you will probably want to use drop-in only with your closest family and friends, and probably only for certain rooms in your home!]-----------------------------------A few (minor) complaints-----------------------------------Unfortunately this 3rd Generation Dot shares an annoying trait of its predecessors: widely varying volume levels within the daily Flash Briefing. As you listen to the briefing, some components (such as BBC News) come through quietly while others (like Reuters) are much louder. Not a deal-breaker, but slightly annoying.Also, occasionally when Alexa misunderstands a command, you have to start over, which can be really irritating. For example, if Alexa thinks you asked to turn on a light but you really asked something else, she will repeatedly say In which room? until you say Alexa, stop and then start over. Im guessing this type of thing will improve over time as voice recognition software becomes more advanced. This is really more of an Alexa issue than a Dot issue, but it drives me nuts at times.Finally, I wish the Alexa phone app was easier to use. It works, but its organization is not intuitive and it feels rather clunky to navigate. Again, this is more of an Alexa issue than a Dot issue, but still… Hopefully Amazon will continue to make improvements to it!--------------A few tips--------------1) The Dot seems to pick up voices best when placed at or below eye level (i.e., roughly the level from which your voice emits). Mine has trouble detecting voices coming from below it, so I dont recommend placing this on a high shelf.2) When you select news feeds for your Flash briefing I recommend picking one U.S. source and one international source (I use NPR and BBC - both are excellent). If you add too many feeds youll get a lot of overlap and hear the same story several times.3) If you have multiple Echo devices in your home, sometimes speaking to one will cause others to respond as well, especially if they are in close proximity (like in adjacent rooms). One way to prevent this is to change the wake word of one of the devices to Echo or Amazon. The only downside is that you then have to remember which wake word you assigned to each device!------------------------------------------------------------------------Echo Dot vs. Echo vs. Echo Plus: Which one to buy?------------------------------------------------------------------------(Please note that I am only comparing Echo devices that do NOT have screens.)When choosing between the Echo Dot and one of the larger Echo devices, perhaps the most important question to ask is How much do you plan to LISTEN to the device? This question is important because one of the biggest differences between the Echo Dot and the larger Echo devices is sound quality: the 1.6 speaker of the Dot simply cannot match the fullness and heft of the Echo or Echo Plus. (Remember, they all run on the same Alexa software, which means they all have nearly identical skill sets!)So, if you dont currently own an Echo device, start by thinking carefully about how you plan to use it. Many Alexa skills fall into one of two broad categories: those that rely heavily on the speaker and those that dont. For example, features that benefit from good sound quality include playing music/newscasts/podcasts, the drop-in feature, and hands-free calling. (This is why I chose an Echo Plus for my kitchen - I use it every morning to listen to the news.) If you plan to use your device largely for these type of features, you would probably appreciate the better sound of the Echo or Echo Plus.On the other hand, if plan to use the Echo mainly for non-listening purposes such as voice-controlling your smart home devices, then the sound quality isnt as important and a Dot is probably all you need. In fact, you could even save some money by purchasing a 2nd generation Dot instead — especially if its not going to be in a highly visible location or you dont mind its shiny plastic look. I have several single-purpose Dots in my house in rooms where I want to voice-control one thing, such as a lamp in the room, and 2nd generations Dots are just fine for this — and now that their price has gone down they are a great value!==========Bottom line==========The Echo Dot is an extraordinarily useful and versatile device — one that becomes more useful all the time as Alexas skill set expands. The 3rd Generation model has a great new look, but despite marginal improvements in the speaker, its still pretty unsatisfying as a playback device for music or newscasts. As long as you are willing to accept its acoustic limitations, the Dot can be a wonderful device to have in your home. And if you DO want better sound quality for the features you use most often, you can always connect the Dot to your own sound system via Bluetooth or the 3.5-mm audio jack. Hope this was helpful! I had no idea Id love Alexa so much - I wake up in the morning and she does the routine Ive set up, and shes so comforting and useful and fun overall. My husband and I played Skills trivia games for hours last night. If we had kids it would be even more super useful (kids workouts, stories, games) - we even had a goodnight story read to us by Alexa and it was awesome. Im really loving it. The Echo Dot itself is pretty great - the sound quality is pretty good, the bass when turned up is not that great, but if you really want to rock out you can connect it to other speakers or just use something else instead. Im really surprised by how much I like the Alexa app (and the Echo Dot), because Im a little resistant to technology, but its pretty easy to figure out and feels like a new little buddy in the home. Im excited to get some SmartHome stuff now so I can turn on/off lights, heat, etc. The only tiny issue I have is that for some reason Alexa doesnt pick up my husbands voice as much as it does mine - maybe because Ive used it more? Really cool, though, overall - I feel like Judy Jetson!


Camera & Photo

Wyze Cam 1080p HD Indoor Wireless Smart Home Camera with Night Vision, 2-Way Audio, Person Detection, Works with Alexa & the Google Assistant

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Description

Size:One-Pack Camera Product Description Wyze Cam v2 delivers fast, clear, live stream footage direct to your smartphone via the Wyze App (iOS and Android), day or night. You can receive an alert anytime your Wyze Cam v2 detects sound or motion and view up to 14 days of saved alert videos for free - no monthly fees or subscription required. Use the Wyze Cam v2s new Motion Tagging feature to easily identify motion in both live stream and playback video modes. Plus, you can add an 8GB, 16GB or 32GB microSD card (sold separately) to enable continuous recording, schedule custom time lapse videos, use 2-way audio to talk, and listen through your Wyze Cam v2. Use the Wyze App to manage and view multiple cameras, share your cameras with other users, view alert videos, and record and share photos and videos directly from the app. With its small size, magnetic base, and flexible 3-axis design, the Wyze Cam v2 can go anywhere you need it. The Wyze Cam v2 must be powered to use (it does not have a battery) and is designed for indoor use (it is not weatherproof). From the Manufacturer 1080p Clarity, Day or Night 2.8mm focal length. 110º wide angle lens. 1920×1080 (1080p) full HD video. 8x digital zoom. Night vision up to 30 feet. Wyze Cam v2 delivers clear, crisp live stream footage to your smartphone, day or night, so you can see every detail, even at 8x digital zoom. Works with Alexa Wyze Cam v2 works with Alexa. Control Wyze Cam v2 with your voice by saying, Alexa, show me the Living Room to view a live stream from your camera. Wyze Cam v2 can automatically record a 10-15 second alert video when it detects motion or sound. Videos are securely uploaded to the Amazon AWS Cloud via end-to-end encryption and are accessible for 14 days no subscription plan required. With its small size, magnetic base, included adhesive metal plate, and flexible 3-axis design, the Wyze Cam v2 can go anywhere you need it - no screws required. Wyze Cam v2s Motion Tagging technology detects and highlights motion, making it easier to identify moving objects. Sometimes Big Things Come in Small Packages Wyze Cam v2 comes packed with features weve covered every angle, so you can too. About the Startup Describe your product in 3 words. Tech for all! How did you come up with the idea for this product? Wyze Labs was created with the mission of making high quality, easy-to-use, affordable smart home technology accessible to everyone. We believe big things come in small packages thats why we created an affordable, easy-to-use smart home camera that can help you solve lifes mysteries, big and small. So you can be everywhere. And watch everything. What makes your product special? In creating the Wyze Cam we focused on 3 things: quality, affordability and design. We partnered with our user community to create a camera that is useful, easy-to-use and affordable. It has the features users want, in an elegant, simple design. What has been the best part of your startup experience? Working directly with our user community to create a product we all love. Were not just selling a camera were creating a new way for our user community to participate in the product development journey, from vision to testing to launch. And this is just the beginning. We cant wait for you to join us!

Notes from the Community

I never used this product. I unboxed it and then downloaded the app & read the user agreement and absolutely cannot consent to the terms. Please read and understand the clause about subrogation claims BEFORE you use this product. It puts the user at admittedly unlikely, but very real legal and financial jeopardy in the event of the product failing in such a manner that harm is caused- for example the cord catching fire. USER is repsonsible for all legal fees or fines/claims against the product EVEN if the product was at fault! For me, being someone who just lost a home in a fire with a product that is being pursued under subrogation by my insurance company there is NO WAY I would consent to this!! I love this WYZE camera! This is the 6th one I have purchased! For the price, you cant do better. I have this camera mounted outside, I purchased the little house available here on Amazon, and so far so good! I have a great view of my driveway! I already have two other WYZE cameras outside, one protecting my front door and one protecting the back door, and they work great during the day or night. I have had those outside since Frb and they have survived cold, snow, and rain. I dont use the alerts, so I cant comment on them. I record directly to SD cards. The picture is clear and the app is useful. I also have three Amazon Cloud Cameras too, which I also love, however I have to say, these WYZE cameras have more features, recording to an SD card for one, then the Cloud cameras have. Plus these WYZE cameras are a quarter of the price! I have one camera pointing outside through my living room window. I have to turn off the night vision due to reflection, however i get a great view! I wish I could think of more places I need to monitor, I would buy more WYZE cameras! I want to begin by saying that I have been very interested in owning security cameras in my home, but Ive never wanted to spend a bunch of money on it. I heard about this camera through a tech news article and I thought that I would give it a shot. After all, a $30 1080p security camera with some free cloud storage just seemed to good to be true.What I like:Picture quality is very good and setup was easy. Priced very well too!Each camera comes with a metal plate and some sticky tape which allows you to put this on any flat surface. This is nice since the camera has a magnet on the bottom of the stand.Updates come out regularly to fix bugs. Hope that continues for many years to come!The two way audio quality is actually pretty good! Talking to someone is kind of a pain though. Speaking of that…What I dont like:To have your voice protrude through a camera, you have to open the camera on the app and press and hold the mic icon. To hear the other person though, you have to unmute the camera. Seems sensible so far right? Well every time you tap that mic icon, the camera mutes itself again. Kinda pointless to advertise two way audio if the person on the app has to constantly unmute the camera in order to hear the person on the camera trying to talk to them. Not sure why it wont stick to the setting I choose.The recorded alerts are too short. For instance, I have a camera setup in my garage to start recording after it detects sound or motion. Whenever the garage door is opening, I get alerted and the camera starts recording. However, the recording lasts just long enough to see the garage door open and nothing else as recordings are between 9-12 seconds long. There appears to be a cooldown between each alert too. I say this because I dont get another alert in the time it takes me to park the car, close the garage door, get out of the car, and walk across the camera to get into my home. Having a microSD to continuously record everything would circumvent this, but having the ability to have recorded alerts be 30 seconds could avoid this whole issue.You can now setup times as to when the camera will send you alerts, but unfortunately these options are just limited to time of day and do not include day of the week. So if you were hoping to set it up to alert you Monday through Friday between the times of 7am and 4pm, you couldnt. This will always alert you every day of the week between your specified times.This is a small complaint, but the app saves an image of the thumbnail for each camera directly on my phone. Id prefer the thumbnails to stay on the app itself and not saved in its own folder in my pictures. This also goes for my avatar picture on the app.Summary:This is a fantastic security camera for the money. Most of my problems are software related and (hopefully) will be fixed soon. I look forward to updating my review after they get some more options added and address some of the issues that I mentioned above.Update: 1/3/18Both of my cameras frequently disconnect and require power cycles in order to get them to work. They may work for a few hours or a day if I am lucky. Also alarm notifications are not coming up until I open the app making the alerts almost worthless. Ill wait again for an update, but Im kinda losing hope here.Update: 2/20/2018They pushed out an update to help fix the frequent disconnects that I was experiencing, but now only one camera seems to work consistently at a time. (This is in regards to live streaming) What happens is I always seem to have one camera fail at random while the other one continues to work fine. As soon as I power cycle the camera that isnt working, the other one goes down in about a day and I cannot connect to it anymore. If I power cycle that one, then other one goes down. This has been going on since my last update and I now only power cycle them if Wyze pushes out an update as it gets old having to power cycle them every other day. I still get notifications on the one that happens to be down, so its just the live streaming that doesnt work.Speaking of notifications, if you are on an Android device and are not receiving notifications from the app, try disabling any battery optimization settings (i.e. Doze) that are interacting with the app. Disabling that should make the notifications come up again. My phone recently updated to have the Doze feature in Android 8.0 and disabling those settings seems to have made those work again. The camera video quality is definitely good, but there is no privacy… Since there is no way to use the camera locally without their app and just using a regular app like ip cam viewer that simply uses RTSP, I ended up putting an SD card on it and disabling its internet access by assigning an IP that is restricted by my router…Well, to my surprise, the camera is CHINESE intelligent and decided to change its macaddress to a new one (completely different from the one in the back label) in order to gain a new IP from my router and regain internet access.Definitely not a safe cam for indoors…(I should appear as a verified purchase… Although I bought the item directly from wyze I used amazon payments to pay for it). Not sure about how secure it is. They say they utilize a 3rd party called ThroughTek (offices in china and japan - none in US) to handle the transfer of videos. Wyze Cam claims the content is sent securely to aws. Examining the network traffic from camera shows that content is routed thru many providers including AWS, Linode (US) Vultr/Choopa (europe) and Aliyum/Alibaba (china). They seem to also utilize NTP server in Russia. To get more details.. search on web for WyzeCam sending data to servers other than AWS and you will find a Reddit article. How does Wyze ensure that ThroughTek is not eavesdropping?For me to trust Wyze Cam, I need to have clear control over end to end encryption of my data to ensure no 3rd party has any way of accessing my videos. Why cant the data be sent directly from my cam to AWS (s3 bucket)? Why can I not have access to AWS logs (s3 logs) to review which other IP address has accessed (or attempted to access) my content? Just claiming that this is a secure solution, doesnt work for me.Other than this security concern that I have, the end user experience is great for the camera in other respects. Of course the price is super good.


Wyze Cam Pan 1080p Pan/Tilt/Zoom Wi-Fi Indoor Smart Home Camera with Night Vision, 2-Way Audio, Person Detection, Works with Alexa & the Google Assistant

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Description

Style:Wyze Cam Pan Product Description Say goodbye to losing sight when something moves outside the view of your camera. With its 110°/sec rotation speed, 360° horizontal range, and 93° vertical range, Wyze Cam Pan delivers 360° coverage in under 3 seconds so you can see exactly what you want to see, when you want to see it. From the Manufacturer 360° coverage Wyze Cam Pan gives you 360-degree coverage in under 3 seconds. Life moves fast. Your camera should too. Works with Alexa Wyze Cam Pan works with Alexa. Control Wyze Cam Pan with your voice by saying, Alexa, show me the Living Room to view a live stream from your camera. Clarity Day or Night With 6 infrared LEDs, Wyze Cam Pans enhanced night vision distinguishes 18 steps of gray and provides clear images up to 30 feet away. Pan Scan Patrol your room with Pan Scan. Set the cameras patrol route with up to 4 custom waypoints. 2-Way Audio Listen and talk to anyone you care about while not at home. Unique mic design minimizes motor sounds while providing high quality audio. A Class-K audio power amplifier enables high speaker volume. MicroSD Card Storage Wyze Cam Pan supports local storage of recordings to a microSD card (sold separately). Play back videos with your Wyze app to solve lifes mysteries. About the Startup Describe your product in 3 words. Tech for all! How did you come up with the idea for this product? Wyze Labs was created with the mission of making high quality, easy-to-use, affordable smart home technology accessible to everyone. We believe big things come in small packages thats why we created an affordable, easy-to-use smart home camera that can help you solve lifes mysteries, big and small. So you can be everywhere. And watch everything. What makes your product special? In creating the Wyze Cam we focused on 3 things: quality, affordability and design. We partnered with our user community to create a camera that is useful, easy-to-use and affordable. It has the features users want, in an elegant, simple design. What has been the best part of your startup experience? Working directly with our user community to create a product we all love. Were not just selling a camera were creating a new way for our user community to participate in the product development journey, from vision to testing to launch. And this is just the beginning. We cant wait for you to join us!

Notes from the Community

Only good as a toy in close by propertiesIf your internet goes down then back up as it always sometime does in New York City or State the camera will sometimes not reconnect to your WiFi network as it has happened with 3/4 cameras .Since the camera is not responding to either WiFi or LTE your only option is to manually unplug it then plug it in againThis would solve the issue but what happens when you are a 1000 miles away ?Until Wyze ( like Nest does ) codes the software so that the camera reboots itself when attempting to re- connect these cameras are just a gimmick to watch your cat .I am not the only one having same issue as I got numerous emails from forumYou can try to fix by having WiFi AC plugs turning on Pandora off but not reliable This little camera is VERY impressive. I currently own a Nest IQ indoor camera and have owned a couple Foscam indoor cameras in the past. This Wyze camera produces excellent picture quality and has a very easy to use app. The fact that you get 14 days of clips storage for free just blows the Nest cam out of the water.This camera does so much that the 10x more expensive Nest Cam IQ at a fraction of the price.So how does this stack up against the much more expensive Nest Cam IQ indoor camera? You dont get continuous recording stored online, you only get clips stored online. However, you can pop a $10 32GB microSD card into this Wyze camera and get continuous local recording (meaning its being recorded on the card in the device). You can view your recordings in the app. At HD quality, you get a couple days storage on a 32GB card, more if you go SD quality.You dont get the ability to turn the camera on/off based on whether or not you are home. Personally, I really like this feature so it isnt recording us when were home. Just feels weird. Wyze support says they may add this via IFTTT in the future. You can control whether or not motion recording is on when you are home using IFTTT. However, Ive found it a little buggy.You dont get the Nest IQ facial recognition which is very high tech. Im not sure how important this is for an indoor camera. Its amazing for the Nest Hello doorbell.You dont get a monthly fee with the Wyze cam. You pay a fee for the Nest Cam IQ.I cant believe this thing is so cheap and works so well. It has so many features like the big guys. Even the two-way audio is decent. If I had one complaint, its that the motor that rotates the camera is a little loud. Im still giving this 5 stars. I guess its sensitivity to sound is a little high too.It seems like its too good to be true. If you are looking for an indoor security camera, you found it.TIP: I am using this SD card in the camera and its working fine. Inexpensive and does the job if you want local recording - . Silicon Power-32GB High Speed MicroSD Card with Adapter - New EditionNOTE: In the video, I have the camera attached to a mini-tripod. The camera has a standard screw mount for a tripod. You can get a little tripod for around $10. I like it because it raises the camera a bit and provides some extra stability, decreasing the chance it can be knocked over.----- 07/2019 HERE ARE SOME ANSWERS TO COMMENTS PEOPLE HAVE LEFT BELOW ----- Yes, it will continue to do its cloud recording when you have an SD card installed. There is an events tab on the main page of the app for the clips. You can also open a specific camera and tap view playback to see the continuous recording. When viewing on the SD card, there is a delay as it loads up the video. For example, you scroll the time line back 8 hours then there is a 3-4 second delay as it loads the chunk of video around that time. Once it loads, you can move back and forth in it instantly.- I am going to say my 32GB card is getting a little over 3 days recording in a room with only light activity. I cant speak to how that time grows as you increase the size of the card. Im not sure if 64GB would get you 6 days. Seems like it would though.- To the person that thinks the app is useless, Im sorry to hear you are having such troubles. I think the app works well on my Android phone (I dont know about iOS). However, I do believe that those kinds of things can happen. Its not a perfect app and they are adding features which can introduce bugs. Considering the cost of this camera, the app is phenomenal but some people are going to have problems. Hard to predict.- The other app question about it being efficient - yes, it works much better than those other cheap camera app. There is about a 2-3 second delay before it brings up live video. Im not experiencing freezing. However, that is heavily dependent on the network in your home and the network you are using on your phone when you access it (e.g. mobile, slow WiFi, etc.).- Im not sure about the comment about not auto-rebooting when you lose WiFi? Ill say that the cameras survive power failures perfectly. We just had a three hour one last night. Booted right back up. I have reset my network periodically which causes my WiFi to go down for about a minute and the cameras come right back online.Im still using this one and the regular Wyze cam. I still think these are SHOCKINGLY good values. I feel like I wasted so much money on my Nest cam. I should sell it and buy 5-6 Wyze cams. Im a bit of a camera addict. I have hardwired (fixed) cameras that are hooked up to a DVR, and I have 4 Nest cams as well. But we have a lot of pets, and I wanted to have some PTZ cams to be able to look around and check on them when we are away. I heard several tech podcasts (TWiT, Stacey on IoT) ranting and raving over this Wyze cam, so I took the plunge on one. WOW, how amazing to get all this, for $30 (plus shipping)! The image is super-clear, and I LOVE the ability to scan around a room via my phone. I even installed the Wyze app onto my Pixelbook, and when I enlarge the image on my big screen, it looks incredible. I have only had the camera hooked up for a day, and I am still learning the ropes, but I am SO pleased, I am going to order another two, if not three cameras right away!The motion detection feature is pretty slick. I set up the camera in our spare bedroom, where some of our cats hang out, and when Barbie came in, the camera detected her and began following her movements. She was intrigued at the noise (noticeable, but not loud, btw) of the camera whirring, turning. I have attached a screenshot I grabbed via the app, where she is examining the Wyze cam! Highly recommended. I am a fan of wyzecam but this wyzecam Pan is disappointing. Both motion tagging and motion tracking doesnt work even after firmware update. The cam for no reason sometimes just freezes up. I have to power off and on by removing the micro usb cable in order to get it working again. I tried to return it but the return time was over. I am so disappointed and I will never advise others to buy this model base in my experience. How I wish it works as advertised. The bug or whatever it is should be fixed and if it is this unit that is defective I feel I deserve a replacement unit from Wyze. The other units (3) of wyzecam v2 i have is much better in performance. They work great even in my echoshow.UPDATES!Wyze reached out to me and changed the unit. It was on the second attempt that I got a perfectly functioning wyze cam pan.Despite better functionalities than the wyze cam, I feel the wyze cam pan MUST be tested before shipping. To avoid the pains I went through.If you get a fully functional wyze cam pan then you will love it. I have given a 4 star now.


Fujifilm Instax Mini Instant Film Value Pack - (60 Total Pictures)(Package may vary)

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Description

Style:Value Film Pack Share 60 original photos with Fujifilms instax mini film 60 exposure value pack. Fujifilms best mini film value. High-gloss provides top-quality finish

Notes from the Community

Better off buying at Costco or Target. Arrived as three cellophane bound packs of ostensibly Chinese origin (all writing on pack was Chinese and web address on pack was .cn) Fuji 2x10 packs, not the package pictured.First package I tried to use would not eject plastic cover and entire pack of film had to be forcibly removed from camera and thus over exposed remaining film. This wasted $12 worth of film and could have destroyed my camera. Rediculous.This film is sold at local retailers at a cost of about $1 more per unit or, as I now know, at an equivalent price for the product actually pictured at CostCo.Dont waste your money here. Very, very happy with Instax Mini film and the Mini 90 camera. A serious photographer for 25 years, no other genre or format has given me so much pleasure. Results are instant and fun. I love the new polaroid I got for Christmas from my parents! As far as this pack of films goes: The first set of 10 images turned out great, I loved them all. But then the second set of 10 I opened up they all printed completely black, I was seriously disappointed by this. I hope the rest of my prints turn out well.UPDATE:I bought the Fujifilm Mini Film Value Pack with 60 prints from Amazon. So far I have used 5/6 packages included in the box. And so far Ive been very disappointed. 34 of the 50 prints I have tried turned out completely black. Only 16 of my prints have worked so far. After the two that turned out black, I completely read the instructions so I know that I am doing everything right. I dont know if Im taking the pictures wrong but Ive very clearly read the instructions and even went as far as to use a measuring tape to make sure my distance is correct, but Ive taken 12 pictures and theyve all come out black. And in various settings and room temperatures. I had the issue with the first film I bought from walmart, but once I figured out how to take the pictures they worked. Im doing the exact same thing and STILL getting black pictures. I was only trying to shop through Amazon because it was a bit cheaper and this isnt even expired film.Edit: Turns out, after walking around my house about a thousand times I was FINALLY getting pictures, but I wasted many films already. It needs to be RIDICULOUSLY bright in the house for it to not develop black pictures, even though I know I was in stupidly bright rooms. Regardless, its still cheaper than Walmart and Ill get it faster. Ill be buying again. I love these little pictures. All of mine have worked and developed. If anything is wrong with the pictures, as in under/overexposed, its usually my fault because I forget to pick the correct setting! Remember that you cant squeeze the film pack, open the camera when theres a pack of film inside, shake the pictures, or expose them to direct sunlight. If all of that is avoided (and you pick the correct setting) pictures will come out well with a vintage look. Ive bought a couple of these 60ct family boxes and Im never going back. As somebody who kind of consistently uses their instant camera pretty frequently its nice to have multiple packs at home with out having to run to the store every 20 shots. Also if you do the math, this is one of the best deals in instax mini film that you will find around. Now I just have to wait for these to be back in stock to order even more. I liked that it was cheaper to buy 6 packs at $34.However, when I used one of 6 packs, three of 10 films were defective. They came out with black.I hope remaining 5 packs are not defective so I wont be disappointed Sum up of the review_ works great. I would recommend this.Full review- None of them were expired or anything and the picture came out great. This film is probably the cheapest film you can buy for the instax mini. When you input the film box into the camera you have to be sure you do it right or you will mess up your camera. This film came on time and was not tampered with at all. The pictures come out so great. I wouldnt buy any other brand of film if i were you becuase this is manufactured by the same company that the camera are made of. When you put in the film box into the instax mini camera remember to read the instructions before you do so because you ca end up exposing it to sunlight or putting the film box into the instax mini camera wrong causing the camera to mabye get damaged. When you have imputed the film box the first picture take is just a black film box sample thats why when you put in the film box it says s which stands for sample an a soon as you take a picture and get rid of the sample it will say 10 in the little circle which is how many films you have left. When you are imputing the film box be sure not to touch or press to hard again the parts of the film box. I would recommend buying these in bigger packages because you will get more and in the long run you will save more money. […]I f you have any questions feel free to ask!


Video Games

PlayStation Store Gift Card Variation Parent

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Description

Denomination:10 Enjoy PlayStation content with convenient PlayStation Store Cash Cards, which let you purchase downloadable games, game add-ons, full length movies, TV shows, and even PlayStation Plus subscriptions. Buy one for yourself or as a gift card for someone else!

Notes from the Community

I purchased two of these cards almost exactly 4 months ago, in preparation for some fall releases. Ive bought a lot of digital cash cards for PSN from Amazon, its an easy way to use credit or to tuck something away to save for later, when I KNOW I want a game.I used one code early September and was prepared to use one the day before Red Dead Redemption 2 came out. Unfortunately, it did not deposit the $60 into my account. Instead, I get this error from Sony. The code you entered is inactive. Please check terms and conditions. I try multiple browsers, multiple devices.I contact Amazon and Im told its not their problem, its on Sony. I contact Sony, send them the code itself and the purchase information. 2 days later, I hear back. Its not their problem, its the retailers. I contact Amazon again and get told that I can no longer get a refund, they cant do anything and how would $3 in credit make me feel?Dont buy digital codes from Amazon. I was unaware there was a ticking clock on it, I was given no indication that I would have to use in X amount of time and now Im out $60 and Amazon will do nothing.DONT BUY DIGITAL CODES FROM AMAZON. You never know when they just might not work and youre screwed out of your money. Amazon wants to know what I think about this item, a digital code for $10 of credit on the Playstation Store. Theres almost nothing that I could tell you about this that you dont already know if youre actually looking for Playstation Store credit. You buy this item, and a minute or two later you can find the code in your digital codes section on Amazon along with instructions to redeem it and a link to go right to the redeem page with the code pasted in for you in case youre too impatient to read.The codes have always worked for me and theyve been delivered in seconds, which is more than I can say for Sonys own built-in payment methods which like to lock you out arbitrarily. Well, except when someone steals your account then suddenly Sonys got no problem draining the daily maximum of $150 from your bank account or credit line. Which is why you should get these cards instead of putting in money directly through a payment method on Sonys site, because nobody can steal money if you dont have a method of getting it from you. The best a thief can do if all you have is store credit is use your store credit to buy a small amount and theyll probably just go on because its not even worth the time. Where on the other hand if they get $150 they can buy in game items and trade to another account and sell them for money.Advantages:Codes can be given to someone else as a giftDelivered nearly instantly and easy to log in and apply the codeCredit in your account instead of a payment method means theft is more difficultAll the old codes are in your Amazon account so you can look back on how much money you wasted (wait, maybe thats a disadvantage)When you buy digital, a Gamestop executive weepsDisadvantages:Not a physical card so if you want to make a physical gift out of it, do it yourselfCredit in your account is never the amount you need exactly so theres leftovers you may not use for a whileMost games now charge tax so you wont actually be able to get a $10 game with a $10 card, you need a smidge moreOnce in a while they run out of codes and they take their sweet time getting more in, which stinks if you want a game right nowAmazon will send you emails asking what you think about digital gift cards and suggesting more digital gift cards for your collection, since youre obviously a connoisseur of letters and numbersWhen you buy digital, a Gamestop executive weeps This should be a professional service, if youre out of stock on digital codes, youre required to get them back as soon as possible. Their are way… too many people who depend or could afford a $10 or a $20 Playstation Store Gift Card. Please stop using strategies to force customers to purchase your more expensive cards. Id post an update if i get a reply from the relevant seller. El tiempo de llegada del código es inmediato I usually buy the 10$ code for everything… running out of codes and not stock it back is a great way to show how less they care about the customers who depend on this value codes. Ive been waiting for about a month to buy a code and nothing I cannot believe you dont have any supply. Very disappointed with this policy fast easy poor n broke due to fortnite i cant stop nor get rid of 2 months spent $3,000 on in game skins so on i still have no friends to plat with online ps4 i may sadly cut my loss on wasted cash just blew $125 thus far in a day 11/9/18 for the football complete teams ugh!!! online gaming hate it fortnite is a disease that got me i must sadly stop it buy my normal games leave this to the fortnite pc famous paid!!! gamers for twitch n tournaments SAD i spent/spending so much on the free game but every 24 hours new skins are posted emote dances ugh wish i could figure to sell my fortnite account get some money back it destroyed my life literally 3 friends broke up 1 divorced over the game!!! all my ps cards were are for the game lol then paypal was connected to it on ps4 n i cant buy what i want new games out due to money pit fortnite just cos cool skins to buy! unique ones nov. 13th deep freeze rare skin set comes out now too ugh!!! I had to bougt this because the other amounts werent available. I know is better for your and PlayStation Network benefits. But it is not fair.


Xbox Gift Card [Digital Code]

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Description

Denomination:10 Get an Xbox gift card for games and entertainment on Xbox and Windows. Buy the latest games, map packs, movies, TV, music, apps and more. And on Xbox One, buy and download full blockbuster games the day theyre available everywhere. Great as a gift, allowance, or credit card alternative. Works with Windows 10 PCs, tablets and phones, Windows 8.1, Windows Phone 8, Xbox One and Xbox 360 (Xbox Live required). Not redeemable on earlier versions. Music: Only for purchase of tracks, albums and music pass on Windows 10 and Windows 8.1 PCs and tablets, or music pass on Xbox One (Xbox Live required). You cant use Xbox or Microsoft Gift Cards to purchase content from the Xbox 360 Marketplace or Xbox 360 content on the Xbox One. When you purchase an Xbox or Microsoft Gift Card, make sure that the currency you use matches the currency associated with the recipients billing account. Otherwise, the recipient will be unable to redeem the gift card. If you redeem an Xbox or Microsoft Gift Card in a country that doesnt match the country associated with your billing account, you wont be able to use those funds. The funds in your Microsoft account cant be transferred after you redeem an Xbox or Microsoft Gift Card. You cant use funds in your Microsoft account to purchase physical goods from Microsoft online stores.

Notes from the Community

Tried to buy a digital code because I was being lazy and didnt wanna drive to the store and back for a gift card to add money to my Xbox account. Big mistake. Took longer to verify the purchase than it wouldve to just go buy a card. Then trying to redeem the code it started a whole new set of problems. Following the link to redeem took me to microsoft and update profile pages and adding information (which is already on the account) and now my Xbox account cant add codes from the website or the Xbox. Now I gotta deal with customer service and more annoying crap. Lesson learned. Dont buy digital cards from amazon its a pain in the ass. Just buy the prepaid cards at the store Worked perfectly…Within a few minutes after checkout, I received the code-(which is typically located on the back of the card when purchasing this at the store), added it to my account & it was able to be used right away with no problems. Personally, this saved me a lot of time & hassle as I live in a rural area & purchasing the digital code on Amazon allowed me to skip the drive, wait in line etc. Now that I see how effortless this was compared to buying the card at the store, I intend to purchase the digital codes from now on. Perfect transaction start to finish!! Highly recommend! Happy customer! Bought this as way as a alternative to going to the store.Bought it for my little brother sent him the code, he put it on his account and it showed on there as the picture above then he purchased a 4.99 item off fortnite as it shows also in the first picture. Thinking he had about 10 dollars left he went to buy something else but was found with a balance of 1 dollar and some change. Im not sure if Microsoft didnt allow the full amount into his account or they just charged for something else that he didnt know about. But Im the end this scammed me out of 10 dollars. I bought a card and it worked fine. About 2 weeks later I ordered another but the code didnt work. I talked to Microsoft support a little but quickly realized that the order simply hadnt been processed yet so the new code didnt yet arrive. If your code doesnt work, try waiting a minute then refreshing the page (if youve purchased one before). So much easier than running out for gift card. I dont want my credit card on the live account bc the kids can order whatever they want if I do I love the ease and quickness of purchasing the digital Xbox gift cards instead of having to go to the store and waiting in line to buy a plastic card that does the exact same thing as its digital counterpart. Save yourself some time and gas, just buy your gift cards here on Amazon and get access to the funds instantly. The future is here people, take advantage of it! This worked great.. I had never bought 1 online before and was giving it to someone in another state. GLAD TO SEE THIS IS AN OPTION FOR ME TO SEND THINGS TO THE GRAND CHILDREN THAT THEY WILL LIKE.**I have bought this 3 times in the last week for my grand children, so easy to buy and just send them the code. No waiting for the mailman to bring it**** Awesome!!


Nintendo eShop Gift Card Twister Parent

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Description

Denomination:10 Nintendo eShop POSA Cards Updated Redemption Instructions and Terms of Use: Redemption Instructions Nintendo eShop Digital Cards are redeemable only through the Nintendo eShop on the Nintendo Switch, Wii U, and Nintendo 3DS family of systems. Digital Card balances can be shared across Nintendo Switch, Wii U and Nintendo 3DS family of systems, but may only be used on a single Nintendo eShop account. To learn more about the Nintendo eShop, visit nintendo.com/eshop. Detailed instructions for redeeming by device: Wii U If you havent already, set up an Internet connection to your system and make sure your device has the latest system update. From the HOME Menu, select the Nintendo eShop icon. Select Balance from the menu on the left side of the screen. Tap button that says Nintendo eShop Card. Tap the box that says, Enter the code. Use the touch screen to enter the activation code from the Digital Card and tap OK. Select Add. Nintendo 2DS/3DS/3DS XL If you havent already, set up an Internet connection to your system and make sure your device has the latest system update. From the HOME Menu, select the Nintendo eShop icon. Scroll left and select Add Funds. Select Redeem a Nintendo eShop Card. Tap the box that says, Enter the activation code. Use the touch screen to enter the activation code from the Digital Card and tap OK. Tap OK again. Nintendo Switch If you havent already, set up an internet connection on your Nintendo Switch system. Make sure your Nintendo Switch system has the latest system update. From the Nintendo Switch HOME Menu, select the Nintendo eShop icon. Select Enter Code. Enter your download code and click Send. Your total balance cannot exceed $200. TERMS AND CONDITIONS Nintendo Prepaid Card Redeem balance ONLY through the Nintendo eShop and other Nintendo shopping services, including Nintendo systems that offer access to the Nintendo eShop, to download content such as games and other features, or to purchase items (subject to availability). Valid for use in the United States only. Use of this card requires broadband Internet access, and acceptance of a User Agreement, and Privacy Policy. Please review the User Agreement at support.nintendo.com before purchasing. Compatible accessories and software may be required to use certain downloaded content, and are sold separately. When you enter the cards activation code on the Nintendo eShop or other Nintendo shopping service, the card balance will be associated with your Nintendo eShop account and will be non-transferable. There will be no remaining balance on the card. The card balance may only be used on a single Nintendo eShop account. There is a maximum unused account balance that may be stored on a single Nintendo eShop account, and the card may, as a result, be temporarily unredeemable. Card balances do not expire, and there are no fees associated with the card. This card is non-reloadable. Card balances cannot be redeemed for cash or for third-party stored value, and are non-refundable unless required by law. Card balances will not be replaced by Nintendo or your retailer if the card is lost or stolen. Do not buy this card if the silver area has been scratched off. Please visit support.nintendo.com for more information. System Requirements: Supported Platforms: Nintendo Switch, Nintendo 3DS, Nintendo Wii U

Notes from the Community

I am a member of a VERY elite and exclusive organization. Yes ladies and gentlemen. I am a Discover Card Member.While visiting the Nintendo Eshop, I decided I wanted to get a new game: Super Mario Odyssey.Clickety, click and off I go to their shopping cart.Suddenly my heart sinks. My pulse rises. I cant believe my eyes. Nintendo does not accept Discover Card!Rather than just closing my browser then and there. Grabbing my Switch and tossing it in the trash. I realized this must be some sort of mistake? Clearly. I felt discriminated against, personally attacked even.Breathe for a moment. Settle down. There must be some way around this. My very first thought was Amazon.Well, a moment later and Im looking at these gift cards. My only worry was how long it would take to receive the codes. How would I receive the codes. Etc.I proceeded. Bought a $50 and a $10 in order to buy the game in question. Went through Amazon checkout with my Discover Card in hand. Within one minute I had everything I needed to place my order with Nintendo. The codes for the eCash were provided instantly and I didnt have to wait at all.Amazon saved the day, and I didnt have to resort to using a different card.Fast transaction, instant codes, happy customer. everything i read stated the delivery of the code would be instant. that was not the case for my order. it took some digging into a help article but in there i found that in some cases human verification of your order has to take place to assure fraud is not occurring. the process could take 4 hours. my verification only took about 5 mins. but i was pretty confused for those 5 minutes.woulda been nice to know about the verification thing ahead of time.but regardless of that, easy to buy and easy to redeem. i wanted to use my amex which nintendo doesnt accept. thanks for being open, amazon Easy to use Nintendo e-shop card. Scratch the back reveal the number and redeem on the e-shop. Then spend at your leisure. Easy as that. I just found out today that the Ultra Pokémon versions had just been released recently and wanted to play it right away without having to order the game and wait for it to arrive at my doorstep. I didnt want to enter all my new credit card info onto the game console so I decided to go the Amazon route. Buying the ecash gift card allowed me to input the code to add funds in the Nintendo eshop so I was able to purchase the game right from the Nintendo 3ds xl and download it right away. I highly recommend this for people who dont want to wait for their Nintendo gift card to arrive in the mail. Received the code immediately, literally two minutes after purchasing I had the 5 dollars redeemed on my 3ds!! I was a little scared after having some difficulties purchasing eshop cards online in the past. (Not from Amazon though, this is the first time Ive found them available and instantly on here). I had 5 dollars on an amazon gift card that I was hoping I could turn into 5 dollars on my 3DS, and it worked! So, if youre scared about ordering, dont be! Oh, and if youre wondering where to find your redemption code, its in your e-mail. And if you dont already know, go to your Eshop application, then go to your menu, go down to Add funds then click on Eshop card then enter your code! Its so handy to come here and purchase these for the e-shop. I often use either my amazon gift cards I get here and there to buy 3DS games, or there once was a time when I had an American Express which Nintendo doesnt accept which left me with having to go this route, except at the time It wasnt as easy as it is buying from this Store and I had to wait two days for someone to send me a scanned card that they must have just purchased, scratched off and sent to me once they got my money. But here, I purchase the e-shop card and so far the longest its taken to get my e-shop code is 5 minutes. And now with the Nintendo Switch, heres a great way of getting the e-shop cards if you dont want to put your credit card info onto your Nintendo system. i dont know why theres an option to review a gift card code here, but i guess the keypoints are1. the code worked.2. the code delivered near instantly via amazons digital download stuff, email notified me immediately after purchase that i should redeem it.3. with amazon prime chase card, i save 5% on my eshop purchases if for some reason i missed or there was no discount on a physical copy of a game for prime members. Its awesome to be able to buy Nintendo gift cards directly from amazon without having to go to a store to pick one up for use with the Nintendo e-shop. I like to keep my credit card information limited to as few outlets as possible, and this way I can purchase digital games off the e-shop without putting in my information. The whole process is extremely quick, with only a few seconds from the time I purchased the digital card to the email notification letting me know my claim code was available. After that, its a cinch to purchase games for my Switch either online or from the system itself. This is a great way to go about it if you are concerned about safety!


Books

Catch and Kill: Lies, Spies, and a Conspiracy to Protect Predators

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Description

Review A USA Today Best Book of Fall 2019 One of the New York Timess 18 New Books to Watch for this OctoberAn L.A. Times Book Club PickOne of Entertainment Weeklys Biggest Books of Fall 2019One of Times Most Anticipated Books of Fall 2019One of Boston Globes Great Books of the FallOne of Bustles 10 New #MeToo Movement Books to Read in Fall 2019One of Book Riots 50 Best Books to Read This FallOne of Inside Hooks 9 New Books You Should be Reading this OctoberOne of Refinery29s Books That Capture the #MeToo EraOne of Bustles 30 New Books to Get Excited About in October 2019A Fast Company Book to Check Out in October Read more About the Author Ronan Farrow is a contributing writer to The New Yorker, where his investigative reporting has won the Pulitzer Prize for public service, the National Magazine Award, and the George Polk Award, among other honors. He previously worked as an anchor and investigative reporter at MSNBC and NBC News, with his print commentary and reporting appearing in publications including the Wall Street Journal, the Los Angeles Times, and the Washington Post. Before his career in journalism, he served as a State Department official in Afghanistan and Pakistan. He is also the author of the New York Times bestseller War on Peace: The End of Diplomacy and the Decline of American Influence. Farrow has been named one of Time Magazines 100 Most Influential People and one of GQs Men of the Year. He is a graduate of Yale Law School and a member of the New York Bar. He recently completed a Ph.D. in political science at Oxford University, where he studied as a Rhodes Scholar. He lives in New York. Read more

Notes from the Community


Blowout: Corrupted Democracy, Rogue State Russia, and the Richest, Most Destructive Industry on Earth

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Description

Review At its heart, this book is a tale of two countries, the United States and Russia, and how, as Maddow sees itindividually and togetherthey have been warped by a rapacious fossil fuel industry… . Fulminating comes easy to Rachel Maddow. What sets her apart from other serial fulminators is that she does it with factsand sardonic wit.Washington Post[Maddow] may be a popular, progressive news-and-commentary anchor on MSNBC, but its not to be forgotten that she holds a doctorate in politics from Oxford and seems to devour whole libraries of data before breakfast each day… . Expect a tweetstorm as Maddows indictment of a corrupt industry finds readersand it deserves many.Kirkus Reviews (starred review)Known for her intense inquiries into complex subjects, Maddow brings her laser-like intuitiveness and keen and wily perception to Big Oil, that stalwart of global economics, and the shadowy nexus of commerce and politics. Maddow likes murky, the murkier the better, and her examination of the intricacies of off-shore drilling, transnational pipelines, and hydraulic fracking is as deep as the coveted wells themselves… . Like trailblazing journalists before her, Maddow exposes both the slapdash and sinister practices underlying geopolitics and energy policies and revels in peeling back the layers of malfeasance to stoke righteous outrage.Booklist (starred review)All fans of Maddow, and even her detractors, will learn something new from this highly readable yet impressively detailed book. Anyone interested in the covert deals that change the nature of the global environmental and political landscape will devour. A must-have for all collections.Library JournalRadiates zing, intelligence, and black humor. Much like its author.InStyle Read more About the Author Rachel Maddow is host of the Emmy Awardwinning Rachel Maddow Show on MSNBC, as well as the author of Drift: The Unmooring of American Military Power, a #1 New York Times bestseller. Maddow received a bachelors degree in public policy from Stanford University and earned her doctorate in political science at Oxford University. She lives in New York City and Massachusetts with her partner, artist Susan Mikula. Read more See all Editorial Reviews

Notes from the Community

This is for sure some of Rachel Maddows best work. And thats saying something given her prior achievements in relationship to deep-dive journalism. It should be required reading for anybody who wants to understand how we got on the near precipice of the staggering environmental catastrophe known as global warming and now increasingly referred to with that other euphemism - climate change. The book is riveting, charming, infuriating, and brilliant in its depiction of the co-option of many governments, particularly our own, in the breakneck sociopathic/utilitarian exploitation of natural resources, in the service of unlimited fossil fuels, long-term environmental consequences be damned. All skillfully rationalized (jobs, energy independence, progress, etc.)And yet I have to say, despite my enormous respect for this book, it comes up short framing the bigger picture of how something this catastrophic might really have happened. Standing back a goodly distance, one has to say that one common denominator is that we find sociopaths or at least individuals with significant sociopathic features in leadership positions within both powerful global corporations and within many governments. Rachels book is littered with them - they are the stars and cast of her story. They simply do not care about the consequences to others of their exploitation of the environment, do not care that they are sacrificing the long-term planetary health for short-term gain, and simply do not care in anything but the most token fashion about the worlds citizens, especially the less fortunate and less privileged ones who will certainly bear the extremely punitive impacts of climate change in the intermediate term. Not only do they not care but I believe many of them are genuinely psychologically incapable of caring. On the other hand, they care greatly about money, and the acquisition and corrupt exercise of power. And thats the problem. What the hell are we doing? Rachel talks about how real democracy is the only answer to this but its worth remembering that our increasingly manipulated democracy just gave the reins of an aggrandized presidency to Donald Trump, perhaps our second clearly sociopathic president since WWII. But they are everywhere.That is the question which the book begs but does not ask explicitly: why do we so often put sociopaths in charge not in one place but all over the place? Cant we see who they are? This is really the disturbing question that Rachel does not ask us clearly enough to ponder. Why do we find people like Trump, Putin, Duterte, Erdoğan and yes, paradigmatically Hitler, worthy of leadership and the public trust? How did Putin become the richest and most powerful man in the world running what is essentially a Mafia state with nuclear weapons, working to destabilize and undermine all the Western democracies? What is wrong with us, that as sheep that we repeatedly and willingly enable the most ruthless of wolves?Even a cursory review of our history forces a conclusion that this alarming trend of populist naïveté, and the serial give away of power to the sociopathic is nothing new. If anything, quite the opposite. We apparently have been suckers for a never-ending parade of sociopathic and narcissistic leaders who have charmed us, seduced us and demagogued us into giving them power for as long as we have had human history, often times by channeling populist fear and hatred for out groups and other all-too-convenient scapegoats. The worst forms of tribalism appear to be the best friends and core weaponry of the worst sociopathic leaders. While they dont care about the environment, or the masses they exploit, they do care deeply about money and power. And they are good at acquiring and keeping it - and getting more of it! But its never enough, as nothing seems to fill a hidden emptiness.And yet this answer itself is also unsatisfying - and gets each of us off the hook. We have to confess that our own utilitarian attitude towards Nature, that the biosphere on this planet is just a pile of resources to exploit without concern, and not something that we have to shepherd and care for, this exploitive and utilitarian attitude has been the invisible partner and enabler of our sociopathic corporate and government leadership around the exploitation of fossil fuels.Fossil fuels have powered the wonders of our technological civilization, but that has led us to a fundamental overconfidence. We have too much faith in technology technology cannot fix everything, and it cannot replace a fatally damaged ecology. One thing is clear we are running out of time in which to figure these things out, to save the good and even wondrous parts of our technological civilization. Rachels brilliant book hopefully will motivate us to take desperately needed action … and soon, and to better see through the fog of lies by those with the sickest of motives. As she says, real democracy must win out, or it, and much of the biosphere, dies in a sixth mass extinction that already has a scary level of momentum. The history of the oil and gas industry and how it has permeated politics, trade relations and more is chronicled in BLOWOUT, by Rachel Maddow. Maddow starts with Rockefeller and the beginning of the oil industry and continues through the beginning of the Trump administration. Maddow covers the environmental impacts of the industry, the greed and narcissistic dominance that breeds from oil and gas, and the political highs and lows that have crossed paths with desire to be master of oil and gas. Maddow does an excellent job of providing historical texture to each facet of the oil and gas industry. From the history of Oklahoma City and the state of Oklahoma, to the creation and evolution of the magnates in the industry, to the foreign, specifically Russian, approach to oil and gas collection and all of the right and wrong ways they went about it. Maddows black humor and harsh criticism of industry and political leaders is clear; she uses those tools to point out the absurdity that all of the greed and naricissism that the industry creates. One of the best aspects of the book is the description of fracking; how it works, the benefits of it and if done improperly, the multitude of problems it creates. Well-written and compelling to read, BLOWOUT fosters a greater understanding of the entire industry and while there are moments that Maddow is clearly making her opinions known, the core of the book is refreshingly unbiased and factual. Thank you to Crown Publishing, Rachel Maddow, and Netgalley for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review! Another fascinating and eye opening read by my favorite anchor/reporter/ hero. An important addition to her previous book this one focuses on the oil and gas industries. Russia, Tillerson Exon Mobil are all exposed and its a mouth gaping account of corporate greed, lies and how we need to act now, before its too late. Never miss her program. She doesnt just report the news she shows how we got to the point of whatever just happened. Just ordered the book. Before I read one page I know it will explain the Russia/Ukraine situation so I will understand it.


Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire: The Illustrated Edition

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Description

Review Praise for Jim Kays illustrations:I love seeing Jim Kays interpretation of Harry Potters world, and I feel honored and grateful that he continues to lend his talent to it. — J.K. RowlingIts all that an old-fashioned book aficionado could wish for … Is this, one wonders, the sort of book found at Diagon Alleys Flourish and Blotts or in the Hogwarts library? Kays illustrations, freshly re-envisioning the story, range from spot images to dramatic double page spreads, all pulsating with color and vitality. This gorgeous volume is sure to please all, from Harry Potter neophytes to longtime fans. — New York Times Book Review Read more About the Author J.K. Rowling is the author of the record-breaking, multi-award-winning Harry Potter novels. Loved by fans around the world, the series has sold over 500 million copies, been translated into over 80 languages, and made into eight blockbuster films. She has written three companion volumes in aid of charity: Quidditch Through the Ages and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (in aid of Comic Relief UK and Lumos), and The Tales of Beedle the Bard (in aid of Lumos), as well as a screenplay inspired by Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, which marked the start of a five-film series to be written by the author. She has also collaborated on a stage play, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Parts One and Two, which opened in Londons West End in the summer of 2016 and on Broadway in the spring of 2018. In 2012 J.K. Rowlings digital company Pottermore was launched, where fans can enjoy news, features, and articles, as well as original content from J.K. Rowling. She is also the author of The Casual Vacancy, a novel for adult readers, and the Strike crime series, written under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith. She has received many awards and honors, including an OBE and Companion of Honour, Frances Légion dhonneur, and the Hans Christian Andersen Award.Jim Kay won the Kate Greenaway Medal in 2012 for his illustrations in A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness. Jim studied illustration at the University of Westminster and since graduating has worked in the archives of Tate Britain and the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew. Jim has produced concept work for television and contributed to a group exhibition at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. He now lives and works in Northamptonshire, England, with his partner and a rescued greyhound. Read more

Notes from the Community

I am sooo disappointed. I absolutely love the illustrations when the pages actually have illustrations. There are numerous chapters with only 1-2 small illustrations, throughout the entire chapter. There is at least three chapters (The Egg and the Eye, The Parting of the ways, Mayhem at the Ministry) where there isnt a single illustration other than the boarder on the chapter title page. The pages arent even embellished (see photo).Some examples per chapter- The Yule ball: 1 illustrationThe Third Task: 2 illustrations, 1 embellished pageRita Skeeters Scoop : 1 illustrationThe unexpected Task: 1 full 1 small illustrationThe Four Champions: 1 medium illustrationThe Goblet of Fire: 1 full 2 small portrait illustrationsThe Unforgivable Curses: 1 small illustration 2 embellished pagesThe Triwizard Tournament: 1 small illustrationThe Pensieve: 1 small illustration 1 embellished page.Veritaserum: 1 illustrationThe Madness of Mr. CrouchPadfoot returns: 1 very small illustration 1 duplicate illustration (from earlier in the book)Those are for an entire chapter!At one point there are 20 blank pages in a row!Also a lot of the end of chapters are just entirely wasted space. So it isnt because they didnt have the room. There first 1/5 of this book is a bit more consistent with the first couple of books but the illustrations become very few and way too far between. I preorder these every year and the pictures are amazing and beautiful. However there was so much going on in this book and only a third or less was illustrated that is very frustrating. Most of the tournament wasnt drawn and there was so much that i was hoping to see. It worries me that the next book wont have even this much done It is a beautiful book and quite large, but the lack of illustrations is disappointing. There is plenty of room, so not sure why. The 1st three had tons of illustrations and it is not like they rushed this out, it has been a bit. I would love to have someone answer this question: why did the illustrations get the short end of the stick, it is suppose to be an illustrated book, not a wordy book with a few illustrations scattered throughout. As with the last 3, this edition is beautiful! The art work is amazing! The only think i can say that i have to say is there seems to be a lot of blank pages in this edition. Entire chapters of blank pages. Its understandable because Goblet of Fire was so long, but having an additional year for the length i was disappointed in entire chapters not having any art. Its made up for with entire full page spreads that are so full of detail and are still simply amazing! The illustrated editions of everything from the wizarding world are really becoming my most favorite things! I cant believe I finally have this in my hands! 451 beautiful pages of goodness! Its a joy to read through these illustrated editions; if the illustrations werent amazing enough, they include the original British text! I am thrilled with this book. It is true, as others have said, that there is less theme-ing than previous books—fewer smaller illustrations throughout the chapters. This doesnt bother me for two reasons. One, the illustrations that are here are SO lovely, and we get lots of full-page illustrations, including one of the Yule Ball (with Hermione in the proper blue robes! Magnificent!) and Ginny, which so many fans wished had appeared in the second book. Two, in my opinion it is less likely that very young fans will be reading the fourth book than the first, second, or third. The brilliance of the early Harry Potter illustrated editions is that they might draw more young fans to the books, but by the time they get to the fourth book (or their parents allow them to read it—lots of parents dont let their kids continue past the third until they are older), they understand that the books are longer and the ratio of text to illustrations is going to be different.These illustrations are intended to complement the text, not turn Harry Potter into a picture book, and they do this amazingly well. The level of detail they provide is fantastic.It hurts my heart to think that Jim Kay might hear less than wonderful feedback about his work here. I am glad he took the extra year to give us this fourth illustrated edition. Honestly, to fully illustrate the longest Harry Potter books, an artist would probably need five to six years or they would need a team of artists, not one. Wicked awesome addition to my collection! I preorder these books every year. I just got mine today. Couldnt be happier! Anyone who likes Harry Potter will love these. I cant wait to share them with my children. If I didnt know Jim Kay is illustrating all the Harry Potter books I would have assumed this was done by a different artist. This book is mostly filled with portraits of the characters that arent nearly as good as previous versions. The unique backgrounds and multitude of small corner illustrations are missing from this edition. The book just felt haphazard and unfinished. Not Kays best work at all.My book was also damaged in transit, packed in a big box without protection. The cover letters are scratched and inside pages are bent.


Clothing, Shoes & Jewelry

Hanes Mens Pullover EcoSmart Fleece Hooded Sweatshirt

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Description

Why fuss with a zipper just pull this medium weight 7.8-O fleece hoodie over your head and get going.

Notes from the Community

This sweater is super soft! Wasnt too expensive. Actually fit me. Im 52 and I got the small size and it fit just right. Shipping took a little though, so dont expect to get the item quickly. I was indecisive on what size to get and I went through all of the questions and reviews to see if anyone who was similar to me provided any helpful info. No one did. So I hope this helps someone. Im a 55 200lb woman, carry my weight in chest and hips. Ordered XXL because I like my hoodies roomy. It was a just a little roomier than I would have liked, but it shrunk a little bit when I laundered it, so now its perfect. The sleeves are a little long, but not cumbersome. The bottom band hugs my hips not too loose, not too tight. Its very soft, lightweight, and warm. I would have given five stars, but I noticed it has a hole in the seam at the cuff and now I have to return it, which is adds a little chore to my to-do list. i got Small, im 52 and weight 105lb, it fits perfect, a little bit snug but thats what i wanted… i think is good for the price .. love it .. Im 510 140lbs and this Medium fits perfectly! Bought this to airsoft in without ruining my more expensive clothes. Just received the hoodie in the mail. Sleeve length is great, I also love the cuffs on the sleeves, very snug on my wrists which I like. The width of the hoodie in the body is also really nice (large size). What Im not so fond of is the length of the body of the hoodie. Its a little to short, and Im assuming it will shrink up a bit as well, so Im afraid it wont fit very well once I wash it. But as of right now, it does fit pretty well and has good warmth! It was a perfect fit!I very much recommend this hoodie. It is nice and soft,it had a smell at first but it will go away. Im a female ,57 ft,and 127pounds and I got the medium size. Used it for an E.T. sort of costume, fits good and quality is OK for the price Im a girl, 5 foot 2 and I weigh 110 pounds. I got a small, its pretty big on me, I feel like it makes my shoulders look big lol because of the way it is but I suppose on a guy the shoulder room would be a plus. Its really comfortable, great soft warm fabric, nice pocket in the middle, pretty bright vivid royal blue, I wear it to work at my warehouse job, its warm, comfy and it holds my cell phone well. I love it! I wont order another one because I was hoping it would be smaller but Im not surprised since this is for men. I like it though. The hood is insanely big but thats not a bad thing. It you got a white hoodie you might look like a clansmen lmfao


SATINA High Waisted Leggings - 25 Colors - Super Soft Full Length Opaque Slim

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Description

Notes from the Community

Let me start by saying THIS REVIEW IS COMING FROM A PERSON WHO OWNS ROUGHLY 30-40 PAIRS OF LEGGINGS (diff style and colors) MOST I OWN ARE HIGH END BRAND $50 or more! Close to half come from Victoria Secret, THESE LEGGINGS ARE BETTER QUALITY! I dont want to bore you with a long strong winded lengthy post so Im going to get right down to the bullet points on REASON WHY YOU SHOULD BUY: (my top most important reason) these leggings are the SOFTEST leggings I have ever worn…by a landslide! (Material polyester and spandex) but feel a lot like Modal.. similar to brands LuLaRoe and Butter but in my opinion SOFTER MASSIVE STRETCH FACTOR! Yes they are one size, I am 5ft even and 173lb and SLIM ONE SIZE fits me just fine with lots of room left to stretch! LENGTH IS longer on me, but I am only standing at 5ft Im not bothered by extra leg room or alittle ankle scrunch and I def dont mind hiking these bad boys super high waist! WAIST LINE has the wide band for added support not too tight yet just tight enough to be comforting yet HOLD YOU IN. I also do not notice them doing the dreded slide down effect where you have to keep pulling them up. THATS ALWAYS A PLUS! COLOR IS GORGEOUS! I purchased the old rose and also the mauve (leaving you two separate reviews) the OLD ROSE COLOR is whats attached to this review, its slightly more of a softer color then the picture, which I actually prefer. Its mauve(ish) but with alittle more pink tint to it. Subtle hue PERFECT PINK NUDE TINT THIN BUT NOT SEE-THROUGH I prefer thinner rather then fleece style, if your looking for thicker warmer material I wouldnt recommend these. These can be VERY VERSATILE spring, fall, winterNO NEGATIVES AS I CAN TELL AT THIS POINT, I RECOMMEND LETTING THIS AIR DRY THOUGH JUST ON MY EXPERIENCE WITH SIMILAR TYPE LEGGINGS, (helps with avoiding the fuzzies between your thighs lol PERSONAL INFO TO HELP WITH SIZING REFERENCE BELOWHEIGHT 5ftWEIGHT 173lbsREVIEWING the old rose slim OS leggings Let me start by saying that I never take the time to write reviews and I purchase half of everything we buy on Amazon. However, as a former LLR obsessed mom of 2 toddlers, I felt called to make time to review these leggings. If you are reading this and wondering how these compare to LLR leggings, I am here to tell you I am confident LLR is ripping loyal customers off by charging $25-30+. These leggings are just as soft. They fit the same, if not better. They do NOT PILL if you wash cold and hang dry. I truly feel like Im wearing butter leggings or like Im naked or whatever other claims LLR makes. The price is obviously better and more fair in my opinion. My last plus is the fit. I am 160#, 55, thicker thighs and have had 2 kids in the last 2 years. Mom bod for sure but all in all average. And with these leggings, I am a one size - no ridiculous sizing like TC (what if youre C and not T? What if youre T and not C?)and OS which really felt like slim fit. At 55 these end right above the top of my foot so Id think if you were 2 taller than me, theyd be legitimately perfect. The band is wide and sits at just the right spot. Ive officially rambled on isnt this review but I really cant say enough. Stop stop stop buying LLR and buy these. I was scared to purchase these at first especially in white! But Im so glad I did they are super soft and not see through which is the best. I loved them some much I ordered in grey and Mauve. I use they for everything. A cute outfit, around the house and even working out. Cant wait ro het every color! These are definitely my new favorite leggings, I own them in 4 colors and plan to buy more. The colors of the actual leggings are just as bold and vibrant as the photos which I love. Buying clothes online can be tricky because the colors or fit of the product rarely matches.Like I said, these are my new favorite leggings. They fit and frame my body like a glove, and are also sooo soft and smooth. The high waistband is so helpful on days that I want to wear a crop top and not show too much. It also holds everything in so I dont have to feel self conscious about my tummy. The high waistband isnt uncomfortable at all, and its so flattering.I cant get over how soooffffttttt these leggings are. Usually leggings that are soft are a little too warm. These are great quality and feel silky smooth on my skin, keep me warm, but are also breathable. Ive worn these alone with just a top, and have also worn them as a base layer under my jeans for a trip that I recently went on.The quality of these leggings exceeds the price. I was worried about them being One Size, but they fit me perfectly. All in all Id say these are a steal for what you pay, and are definitely something I will be getting a lot of use out of. Tricked by all these glowing reviews! I bought 3 pairs (heres hoping the other two are more sturdy) Very disappointed, the crotch seam has about 5 little holes forming around it and its starting to separate after one wear. Im not overweight, Im a size 4/6 depending on the brand. I wore these on a walk in the park the day I received them, that was the most strenuous thing that occurred when I wore them. To be honest I really like the way they feel and fit but I sort of need my leggings to remain in one piece in order to give a good review >_< I am one of those girls that has several pairs of LLR leggings, but find it hard to get a solid black or dark color. Also, they run a little expensive. I thought I would try these- and for less half of the price take a chance on how they might compare. I really like the leggings, they are comfortable and very similar to the ones I have and like. I am about 58 and normally wear a size 12 ( i buy the TC in the LLR leggings) so I got the larger size of these, and they are a bit smaller than LLR- especially in length. The waistband is the yoga style folded band (very comfortable) but the rise is not as high as the LLR - so they feel like they would better fit a shorter person. That being said, for 11 bucks they are a good deal, buttery soft, and I will definitely be ordering more.


Hanes Mens Ecosmart Fleece Sweatshirt

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Description

Now this medium weight 7.8-o fleece sweatshirt is even better, because it is made with up to 5 percent polyester created from recycled plastic.

Notes from the Community

I bought this sweater in order to cosplay as Number 3 from KND, so I was strictly looking for oversized. Im 50, weigh 120 lbs and I bought a medium hoping itd be big enough but not ginormous. The sizing is exactly what you would expect from reading all the reviews. The sweater itself is very soft and pleasantly not stuffy at all. However, if you live somewhere cold, this may be too thin to actually keep you warm. 54 115lb, wanted an over sized sweatshirt to be long and comfy, and to cover my butt so i can wear leggings without old people getting triggered. Any smaller and I dont think it would have been long enough. Not too thick, just right for me. I bought this as a gift for my father. At first, he and I were both alarmed at how thin it was. I offered to return it, thinking it was just cheap fabric. He decided to keep it anyway and within a few days had called to brag on how warm it was; Remember that sweatshirt you got me? It is really light and thin, but boy is it warm! Warmer than any of my others! This was only one month ago, so I cant testify to how it will hold up in the wash, but for now we are very pleased! I bought the red sweatshirt especially for Christmas Season. XL size fit me good, thats my normal size. Fits slightly larger than expected, but gets longer, not just wider.(For reference, I am female, 58, 170lbs, and this sweatshirt fits around my 36J chest with room to spare, coming to rest at about crotch level)~ The inside is fleece-y and very soft, though it does pill slightly in the dryer..~ Washes well, but shrank slightly vertically~ The arm cuffs fit snugly while not constricting my man-sized wrists. The sleeves are maybe 2 too long, which is nice because they can be pulled down to keep my hands warm.~ The neckline is a little bit tight, but not unbearable. It just takes a few minutes to get used to.~ I would call this a medium-weight sweatshirt. Its light enough to wear inside without sweating, and I would also wear it outside down to say 45F.Overall I am very pleased with this sweatshirt. It is cozy, washes decently, and is priced very reasonably. Perfect fit. Using this sweatshirt to make cute Bridesmaids tops for a winter wedding. Even though its mens it is the perfect fit and not too short like other womens sweatshirts. Fits nice for the most part. Except the neck part. Too small and too tight that I find it a bit hard to breathe lol The Hanes sweatshirt was precisely what I wanted except for the color which is better than what I thought I was getting. This order went perfectly, so much so that another two are being shipped to me right now. It is way too early to say anything about durability; but otherwise, there is no way this order could have gone any better than it did. If you are interested in a pretty traditional long-sleeve sweatshirt, you would do well to give this one serious consideration. I would give this shirt and the whole buying experience more than five stars if it was an option.


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