Talking tech since 2003

These days, with new tech products regularly being released and an almost limitless number of websites dedicated to them online, it’s no surprise that the internet is brimming with reviews of the latest technology. Trying to decide which new smartphone to purchase? There are many people online willing to offer you input and advice. Looking for laptop reviews? A quick Google search will bring you thousands upon thousands of results.

Of course, this saturation of information is largely a good thing. Without ever seeing a product, the consumer can learn all of its specs, see pictures of it from every angle, and gauge the opinion of both normal customers and technology experts. A person with very specific interests or needs can almost certainly find someone out there who directly addresses those issues. From a free market, capitalistic, consumer-oriented perspective, the mass of available online reviews is incredibly beneficial.

But as is often the case when large numbers are concerned, there is a downside to the limitless review options one can find online. Reviews can be contradictory or plain wrong. They may stress different aspects of the product or overwhelm you with useless facts. The bottom line is, it can be difficult to decide which reviews to read and which to ignore. Here are some suggestions:

Gauge the Reviewer’s Qualifications

For most of us, we don’t need someone with an advanced degree in Laptop Analysis to write trustworthy reviews. Instead, we just want an opinioned consumer – someone like ourselves. In order to qualify as such, one must have extensively examined the product in question. So when looking for smartphone reviews, for example, make sure that the reviewer has clearly handled and used a given phone. Look for unique pictures and elements of the writing that directly attest to the product’s use. You’d be surprised how many people out there review products without ever using them. If, on the other hand, you want someone who is more expert than consumer writing your viewers, your best bet is to stick to sites like

Ignore Picky Consumer Reviews

There are some negative reviews that every product will get, regardless of whether it is deserved or not. When it comes to laptops, you can probably find consumer reviews out there that critique its battery life and the feel of the keyboard. If every review has that criticism, then it’s probably legitimate, but you should definitely not get held up over a smattering of complaints regarding battery life. It’s bound to pop up with any new laptop product.

Make the Reviewer do the Work for You

If a review just lists off a product’s specs, it’s being unhelpful and lazy. If a review goes a step further and provides general descriptions of the product – but doesn’t tie it all together – it’s being equally unaccommodating. Statements like “the display is great” or “the display has its pros and cons” or “the laptop feels solid in my hands” are valid comments on their own, but need to be tied together into a larger picture that can give the reader more direction.  A good review, then, will give you a great sense of the product when you finish reading. A bad review will leave many missing pieces, forcing you to read more on another site. In this sense, a reviewer who gives ratings to individual components of a product can be especially valuable, and they can be even more helpful when those ratings can be easily compared to other products that this reviewer has analyzed. Ultimately, everything is relative, and you don’t want to get led astray by a reviewer who is always overly positive.

The internet is a big place, and finding good reviews can be a challenge. With these tips in mind, though, you should be well on your way for establishing a system that works for you, and you can then turn to that system whenever an appealing new product hits the market.

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