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Six apps to brighten your Black Friday
First Published Nov 27 2013 08:36 am • Last Updated Nov 27 2013 08:36 am

I must admit, I’ve been geeking out a bit.

I’ve been showing my kids, my students, my colleagues — basically anyone nearby — what I think is one of the coolest things around: Black Friday/Cyber Monday apps for my phone.

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As the first official holiday season as a single divorced father I’m in a new position.

My ex-wife handled all the Christmas shopping for the family. On Black Friday, she’d get up at 3 a.m. and come back with most of we wanted for the three kids at stunning savings. This year, it’s my turn.

And you know what? It’s a whole new badass world of discounts, savings, coupons and deals. Who knew?

Maybe I’ll get my post-turkey nap a little early this year and hit the new Thanksgiving day deals. Maybe I’ll get ambitious and do an 8 p.m. to 8 a.m. shopping spree. But, whatever I do, I will have my handy iPhone in hand, assisting me along the way.

Here’s a small survey of some of the apps available to help you with your holiday shopping needs:

TGIBF | Android, iOS; free

Call me crazy, but I’m pretty sure come Friday I won’t be chanting "Thank God It’s Black Friday." But, I will be happy to have this app on my phone.

TGIBF has been providing me with regular updates on the latest deals. It also has been helping to put me in a shopping mindset (a state of mind foreign to me). I’ve created a nice list of deals based of what my kids want. The popular deals are heavy on WalMart and Target, which my sister tells me are exactly the places to avoid on Black Friday. Well, we’ll see.

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Shopular | Android, iOS; free

"Full price is so passé" is the slogan on Shopular’s website. It delivers advertisements to your phone as they appear in a newspaper. The font is a little small and it’s tough to read, but you can expand the individual ads to make them readable.

What’s super-cool about this app is that there is a clever little geocoding element that allows your phone to be updated with the latest coupons and deals once you walk into your local mall. Want to know what deals there are on that store up ahead? Check Shopular! Now that is some targeted advertising!

Black Friday Ads | Android, iOS; free

There are a couple of different ways to access deals here, including by categories and by stores. It plays to my shopping tendencies (if they can be called that), which are to go to stores I know (and which I think I will be able to buy gifts for my kids). This app allows you to click on stores and see what deals are available – a great little feature for us impulse buyers. You can also access information via categories – so if you want to buy a camera, you can see where the best deals are located.

RedLaser | Android, iOS; free

The cool factor here lies in the ability to scan barcodes and QR codes to see if there are better deals nearby. More importantly, it maps where the stores with deals are, and shows addresses and phone numbers. You can also scan in your store cards to have them all located in one area. Nice.

Zoomingo | Android, iOS; free

The sheer volume of stores and deals here is appealing. The app boasts of having items from 70,000 plus stores and input from 1.5 million users. When you first load the app, it asks you to pick your favorite stores and the type of products you’re interested in. If you find an item you like, the app allows you to find the nearest store carrying it.

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