Available for: Apple iOS, Google Android, Windows Phone, Nokia
Remember malls? Those encased fountain-and-escalator-laden monuments to commerce that were a cultural fixture in the '80s and '90s, but have been trying to scrub off the cookie kiosk stench ever since? Oh yeah, they're still around. We don't just mean in their latest incarnation as "lifestyle centers" set up like fake city blocks to provide all the appearances of urban living with more parking and fewer surrounding residents. We mean all of the more than 1,200 such establishments FastMall has mapped out on its site. If you're still trying to find Cinnabon after they turned the food court into a giant, two-story Apple Store or want to embarrass your kids by checking in at Hollister, this is the the way to do it.
Available for: Apple iOS and Google Android
Naming a site after an entire Nepalese ethnic group has questionable merit, but equating that site's mission to that of Himalayan mountain guides is a less outlandish -- if only slightly. Coupon Sherpa not only sifts through the Internet's mountains of mobile coupons and printable retail coupons, but lets retailers scan those coupons right from a smartphone, tablet or other compatible device. There are coupons for grocery stores, too, but coupons for Kohl's (KSS), Aeropostale (ARO), Sears (SHLD), Staples (SPLS) and Starbucks (SBUX) come in much handier on those holiday shopping excursions, as do deals at Chili's, Olive Garden and even White Castle once the shopping's done. Decide.com
Available for: Apple iOS
Electronics shopping can be a tricky business if you're A) Not technologically inclined B) Shopping for someone who is or C) Both. For this year at least, Decide.com can help you out without encumbering you with a yearlong subscription or onerous fees. Their app rates electronics, appliances and home and garden equipment while providing welcome tips and even product warnings. If a top-rated laptop or television is last year's model, Decide will direct users to the newer version. If Decide editors know a tablet was just released, it'll tell consumers to hold off on buying until a price drop. If it knows a smartphone is showing its age, it might suggest that now is the time to buy. Stop feeling intimidated at the counter and call in some backup when buying the latest tech toys. -- Written by Jason Notte in Boston. >To contact the writer of this article, click here: Jason Notte. >To follow the writer on Twitter, go to http://twitter.com/notteham. >To submit a news tip, send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org.