The populace have spoken.
No, I don’t mean the local elections last week.
And I’m not talking about voting for the latest winner of Celebrity Strictly Bake-Off Idol On Ice…
I mean a group of people far more important to me – my readers!
After my article last week about Amazon Prime, several people took to the web version to leave a comment or reply. Some were simply saying thanks for making it clear (Thank you! It’s always nice to hear that what I’ve been doing helps!). And one or two had some other related tips. And the tips were so good, I thought I should share them with everyone – here you go:
First, Chris pointed out that I missed out a really good feature of Amazon Prime Video – that you can download films or episodes from a series to the tablet to watch later on when you don’t have an internet connection (or if the internet connection is too slow to watch them “live”).
That can be useful if you’re going away for a few days and want something to watch in the evenings but you won’t have wifi (or it might be a really slow connection). Or if you want to watch it in a room your wifi won’t stretch to. Or even if you want to take it round to a friend’s house to watch together.
And as Chris said, Netflix and Now TV don’t give the same ability.
Some people probably won’t use it, but at times it can be really handy.
Several people have mentioned about how Amazon promote Amazon Prime when you’ve ordered something – they offer you the free fast delivery service if you take up a free trial of Amazon Prime.
That can work well – you get all the benefit of it for a month and as long as you cancel it you pay nothing. But it’s easy to forget to cancel and end up paying… or not be able find the email they send you with a link to cancel it. Or even to not realise you need to cancel it!
Well, now you know to watch out for accidentally signing up for Prime when you order something. (Look out for it saying “free delivery with Amazon Prime Trial” or words to that effect.)
And if you do take the trial and can’t see how to cancel it or don’t want to wait for the email they send you, you can cancel without that email. Here are Amazon’s instructions on how.
If you do join on a trial (accidentally or on purpose) and forget to cancel within the trial, you’ll find yourself paying an amount every month – and you might not notice at first.
That can be an unpleasant shock if you suddenly realise you’ve been paying for the last 4 months!
Obviously you should cancel it straight away if that happens, but it might also be worth getting in touch with Amazon. At least one reader did and found that Amazon checked he’d never used the service and refunded him. I can’t guarantee they’ll always do that but it’s worth checking with them!
And one reader asked about ebooks that are available free. Well, as well as the “borrow a book every month on Kindle” thing I talked about last time, there are lots of ebooks available free on Amazon – and you don’t even have to belong to Prime to get them. They’re all the old books that are out of copyright. Dickens, Thackeray, Trollope and so on.
Amazon do have a page listing some of these here, but if you like classics you might find it as easy to search for a particular book title or author and then look down the list for Kindle Ebook versions listed at £0.00
Coming Up: The downside of technology?
I know, I know. If I write “the downside of technology” some wag will come along and ask “Which one?”.
I do think things like computers, tablets and smartphones are great. It’s not just the gadgets themselves – that’s not the point. It’s what you can do with them.
But there are some downsides. One that people don’t think about very much is how using them can affect your sleep.
It’s not the catastrophe that some newspapers like to make out, but using a device with a screen a lot can affect your sleep.
It’s not all bad – there are at least two ways it can actually help your sleep! But if you’re using a screen a lot, it can make it harder to nod off at night… or mean you don’t sleep as soundly.
It set me thinking – and looking into how much it matters. And what I discovered was gobsmacking – to me at least. And fascinating as well.
Anyway, more on this later – this email was supposed to be about all the tips from everyone else. Thanks again to everyone who left a comment (and if you want to leave a comment on this one, you can go here to do it).