• August 25, 2019

Odessa American: Tech Talk & Innovation

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Smart Factories With A Human Feel

(NAPSI)—Future smart factories may look like something out of a science-fiction movie but they’ll also contain a familiar element: people.

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Recent Headlines

Tuesday 08/20/2019
Cybercriminals are targeting the education sector: How to protect your family
Updated: August 25, 2019 - 2:35 am

(BPT) - As children return to school across the country there is a topic not found in textbooks or traditional coursework that parents, guardians and educators should prioritize: smart cybersecurity practices.

Monday 08/19/2019
Searching for a deal on a family wireless plan? Here's what you should know
Updated: August 25, 2019 - 2:35 am

(BPT) - Sharing your wireless plan with family members is a great way to save. It eliminates the hassle of multiple bills and lets you benefit from bundled savings offered by your provider. But choosing the right one requires some homework: Family plans today come in all shapes and sizes.

Friday 08/16/2019
5 tips to protect your connected devices and electronic identity
Updated: August 25, 2019 - 2:35 am

(BPT) - Resourceful thieves and cyber criminals continue to find new ways to hack U.S. consumers’ sensitive personal information. Dumpster diving, stolen or lost wallets and mail fraud should still be concerns, but the digital age of tablets, smartphones, PCs and Wi-Fi networks leaves people even more vulnerable than ever.

Thursday 08/15/2019
5 ways to elevate your home decor through minimalism
Updated: August 25, 2019 - 2:35 am

(BPT) - The latest trends in home decor reveal a desire for a feeling of tranquility and calmness, perhaps as a response to today’s overly busy and distracted lifestyles. From Marie Kondo’s decluttering craze to a return to natural materials in home design, everyone is looking for a way to create a peaceful, less hectic inner space. When it comes to home decor, less is definitely more.

5 Classroom Technologies Making Learning Easy and Fun
Posted: August 15, 2019

(StatePoint) New technologies being introduced into the classroom are making learning easy, fun, and engaging, and are transforming education in the following ways:

Tuesday 08/13/2019
The cost of complacency: How auto-pay can drain your dollars
Updated: August 25, 2019 - 2:35 am

(BPT) - When it comes to managing your monthly bills, it doesn’t get much more convenient than auto-pay. Because this option eliminates missed payments and late fees, it’s easy to see why three-quarters of Americans have opted in, with anywhere between one and seven monthly payments, according to recent survey findings.

However, consumers are also discovering that enlisting in auto-pay isn’t without its financial downsides. The following survey findings from TheZebra.com (an insurance comparison site) show how auto-pay can make consumers complacent.

* Nearly a quarter of people (23%) admit to not paying attention to what’s coming out of their bank accounts. If the result is an overdrawn account or a billing error slipping through, that can prove to be a costly mistake.

* One-third (29%) of respondents confess to forgetting to cancel services linked to autopay after they’ve stopped using the services. A couple prime examples of this are a music streaming service subscription or a gym membership.

* Nearly half of consumers indicate that once auto-pay is set up for their car insurance payments, they never get around to re-evaluating their fees. Considering the market value of our cars depreciates every year, this suggests that many consumers are missing an opportunity to get the best coverage at the best price, as car insurance rates can change daily.

* Finally, by not taking time to evaluate costs or cancel unused services, consumers are paying the price. Some 29% of respondents estimate they’re losing $100 annually, but for high-ticket items like a gym membership, the savings could be in the thousands.

Now that you know the high price you may be paying for the convenience of auto-pay, here are some tips to help you stay in control of your finances.

1. Keep track of your statements. Because money is withdrawn from your account each month, it’s easy to lose track of your spending. Otherwise, if a price hike takes effect or if you end up consuming more services than expected, the consequence can be a higher-than-expected bill. If your bank account lacks the funds to cover it, you’ll end up with an overdraft, which can end up costing you more than any late fee! So when auto-pay takes effect, make sure you review the monthly statements. If you see an additional charge or a price hike take effect, follow up immediately.

2. Research rates at least twice a year. While your service provider may offer excellent service at a great rate, it’s always possible there’s a better deal for you somewhere else. Take time to research and compare the going rates for things like internet service and car insurance — you may be pleasantly surprised. To make sure you follow this step, set up six-month reminders on your phone or calendar and commit yourself to following through. If you end up using the service less often than you planned — or not at all — this reminder can give that much-needed nudge to reevaluate.

3. Take time to fully understand your options. As you know, some service agreements, such as gym memberships and mobile phone contracts, can’t be canceled without penalty — at least, not until you’ve reached a specific end date. But don’t make the mistake of thinking this rule applies to all service agreements. For example, did you know you can switch your car insurance anytime without paying a penalty? It’s true! In fact, once you switch, your old insurer will send you a rebate for the balance, even if time remains on your six- or one-month policy. So go ahead and shop around. If you find a car insurance provider that’s more affordable and provides the coverage you need, you can reap the benefits right away. Just remember, if you do decide to switch, don’t cancel the old policy until the new one is officially in place. Otherwise you might get charged a penalty for the gap in coverage.

How to save on a big bill: Car insurance

Looking for a better price on car insurance? TheZebra.com allows you to see how your current policy stacks up to the rest. The Zebra is the only auto insurance comparison site that shows you all your options side by side, and never sells your data. When you shop around with The Zebra, you can rest assured knowing you won’t get any unwanted calls or emails. Visit www.thezebra.com and see how much you could be saving on car insurance.

You don't have to pay big bucks for the best entertainment [Video]
Updated: August 15, 2019 - 2:52 am

Monday 08/12/2019
More Privacy Choices Are Just A Click Away
Updated: August 14, 2019 - 2:44 am

(NAPSI)—If you’re like most people, changing the settings on your computer or smartphone can be a frustrating experience, full of technological jargon, confusing menus and complicated controls.

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Online Features

Pet Central

pets

Having a pet is a lot of responsibility, and we’ll help by giving you lots of tips and tricks! More >>

Fitness

Fitness

Our fitness articles will help teach you how to work out with gym- and home-based exercises. More >>

Crosswords

Crosswords

Enjoy the crosswords challenge in our free daily puzzles, from the harder Sunday crossword to the quicker daily. More >>

Sudoku

Sudoku

Every Sudoku has a unique solution that can be reached logically. Enter numbers into the blank spaces so that each row, column and 3x3 box contains the numbers 1 to 9. More >>




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