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Anker PowerLine Lightning cable 3-packYes, Apple’s three-foot Lightning charging cables for iPhone and iPad are ridiculously overpriced at $20 each. That said, opting for a dirt-cheap but cheaply-made alternative isn’t much of a bargain, either.

The good news is that The Wirecutter’s top pick for a replacement Lightning cable—the “fast” and “sturdy” Anker PowerLine—is currently on sale. For now, you can snap up a three-pack of Anker’s three-foot PowerLine Lightning cables for $20, which is half-off the regular price and a whole lot cheaper than a single Apple cable for $20. Read More

Anker USB 3.0 8-in-1 Card ReaderNo SD or microSD memory card slots in your Mac or PC? No problem. All you need is a USB memory card reader, which plugs into your computer’s USB port and (assuming you get the right one) boasts slots for all the major memory-card formats.

If that sounds useful, check out this USB memory card reader from Anker. On sale for $8 (normally it’s $16), this particular memory card reader is compatible with a total of eight memory card formats, from SD and microSD (the formats you’re most likely to find in your digital camera or Android phone) to SDXC, SDHC, MMC and RS-MMC. If you’ve never heard of those other formats, don’t worry; you probably don’t need ’em. Read More

BeatsX wireless headsetIf you’ve ever eyed a snazzy pair of Beats headphones but balked at the stiff price tag, now’s a good time to take another look.

On sale for $120 (normally it sells for upwards of $150), this iPhone-compatible BeatsX wireless headset boasts robust sound quality, speedy pairing with iOS devices (thanks to Apple’s new W1 wireless chip), an impressive eight hours of battery life, a “Fast Fuel” feature that gives you two hours of battery life on a five-minute charge, and an in-line remote for controlling your tunes, taking calls and activating Siri.

Also included: four pairs of eartips, detachable “wingtips” to secure the earbuds in your ears, a carrying case and a charging cable. Read More

Anova Precision CookerEver heard of “sous vide” cooking? Apparently, it’s a method of sealing meat, fish, veggies, or just about anything else in a bag or a jar, then cooking it in a pot of water heated to precisely the right temperature. The result: perfectly cooked food, every time, and you can try it at home with this bargain-priced (and iPhone-friendly) cooker.

On sale for $119 (normally it’s $150), the Anova Precision Cooker clamps to the side of any pot. Fill the pot with water, drop your sealed into the pot, set the timer and temperature, then press Start. When the timer goes off, voilà! Your precision-cooked food is ready (although you’ll want to sear steaks and fish on a skillet before serving). Read More

iXCC 50W Multiple Ports Cup Holder Car ChargerHere’s an easy way to keep everyone’s iPhones, iPads and Android phones charged during a family road trip.

The $16 iXCC 50W Multiple Ports Cup Holder Car Charger (normally it’s $40) plugs into your car’s cigarette lighter via a 23-inch power cable, while the charger itself slides into an empty cup holder.

With its multiple fast-charging USB ports, the iXCC car charger can charge up to five devices at once, including power-hungry iPads and jumbo-sized Samsung Galaxy phones.  Read More

Xit AXTCXNY Bluetooth Clip X speakerNo, I wouldn’t advise wearing a portable Bluetooth speaker in the library or at the movies. But if you’re in the mood for music while you’re, say, working in the garden or taking a hike, a compact clip-on speaker like this one could make for a tuneful companion.

On sale for $8 (usually it’s $20), the two-ounce, neon-yellow Xit AXTCXNY Bluetooth Clip X speaker wirelessly streams tunes from your iPhone or Android phone, and you can clip it onto a backpack strap, your belt loop, a keychain, you name it. Don’t expect Bose-quality sound, but for eight bucks, it’s hard to complain. Read More

ben’s tip of the week

Ben Patterson: Welcome to here's the thing, your source for practical tips, advice, and how-tos about the gadgets you use every day.

Want to see everything you've ever 'liked' on Facebook?

If you’ve lost track of your various “likes” over the years, a quick trip to your “Activity Log” on Facebook will jog your memory. Want to “unlike” an old “like,” or hide a liked Facebook fan page from your profile? You can do that, too.Read More

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