Just because you can buy a gadget doesn’t mean it warrants a place in your house. New gadgets appear on store shelves every day, but not all are useful or practical.
Maybe you're looking to save money when you go shopping and don't want to risk wasting it on something that won't serve you as well as you thought.
If you want to keep more money in your bank account, you might want to avoid these unnecessary purchases.
Editor's note: prices are subject to change and may vary by location.
Earn cash back on everyday purchases with this rare account
Want to earn cash back on your everyday purchases without using a credit card? With the Discover®️ Cashback Debit Checking account (member FDIC), you can earn 1% cash back on up to $3,000 in debit card purchases each month!1
With no credit check to apply and no monthly fees to worry about, you can earn nearly passive income on purchases you’re making anyway — up to an extra $360 a year!
This rare checking account has other great perks too, like access to your paycheck up to 2 days early with Early Pay, no minimum deposit or monthly balance requirements, over 60K fee-free ATMs, and the ability to add cash to your account at Walmart stores nationwide.
Don’t leave money on the table — it only takes minutes to apply and it won’t impact your credit score.
Dyson air-purifying headphones
Now you can reduce noise pollution and air pollution at the same time!
For a mere $1,000, you can purchase noise-canceling headphones with a detachable high-tech, contact-free face mask that blows a stream of purified air into your face.
Sorry, Dyson. No amount of marketing will make this look cool.
Egg-shaped smart toilet
The toilet’s basic design hasn’t changed much over the last few centuries. But for those who have dreamed of an egg-shaped, remote-controlled, motion-activated commode, Kohler’s got you covered.
You’ll pay a handsome sum — around $3,750 at the time of this writing — for these fancy features.
We all have fantasies of household robots doing the dishes or taking out the trash. Amazon recently launched the Astro, a “household robot for home monitoring.”
However, it falls a little short of its innovative promise: The Amazon Astro is basically an Alexa mounted on a Roomba that doesn’t vacuum.
Get a protection plan on all your appliances
Did you know if your air conditioner stops working, your homeowner’s insurance won’t cover it? Same with plumbing, electrical issues, appliances, and more.
Whether or not you’re a new homeowner, a home warranty from Choice Home Warranty could pick up the slack where insurance falls short and protect you against surprise expenses. If a covered system in your home breaks, you can call their hotline 24/7 to get it repaired.
For a limited time, you can get your first month free with a Single Payment home warranty plan.
Banana phone handset
Doubtlessly inspired by children’s entertainer Raffi’s iconic “Bananaphone” song, this handset connects to Android and iPhone devices so your inner child can talk on a banana. While this handset has little practical use, it might make a good gag gift.
Smart water bottle
Sure, many of us could stand to drink more water. So, investing in a nice water bottle to give yourself an incentive to do so isn’t a bad idea.
But smart water bottles might be a bit over the top. You can find such bottles that track your water intake via Bluetooth and light up with rainbow colors.
Those features are nice, but you can pick up a great water bottle for a fraction of that price if you don’t need all the bells and whistles.
Levitating Bluetooth speaker
Even if 2023 didn’t bring us mass-produced flying cars, at least we have levitating Bluetooth speakers, right?
On Amazon, you can purchase a speaker that looks like a UFO and actually levitates. While this looks cool, some user reviews note that the speaker must be perfectly positioned over the base. They also grumble that the quality of sound and construction are lacking.
If you’re going for a great sound from a speaker that will last a while, it may be best to look at one that doesn’t also strive to defy gravity.
USB clock fan
If you’re feeling a little warmish after some intense PC gaming, you’re probably better off buying a standard desk fan instead of this gadget.
Reviewers of one USB clock fan on Amazon complain that it wears out quickly. The device also resets the time after the computer shuts off or the device is unplugged, making it a poor purchase.
And remember, the laptop or desktop you’re using already has a built-in clock.
Watching your favorite show or movie on a tiny smartphone screen can be annoying. A screen magnifier solves a problem but might not do so as effectively as you would hope.
Reviews of one such product on Amazon state that the reflected image isn’t very clear due to circles in the glass.
Sonic automatic toothbrush
This toothbrush allows you to brush all your teeth simultaneously, saving a couple of minutes each time you brush.
Unfortunately, replacement trays cost around $13 a piece. If you want the dental hygiene benefits of an electric toothbrush, a typical Oral-B or Sonicare will cost much less over the long term.
Stop overpaying when you shop online
Shopping online has its perks. It's super convenient, but it can be time consuming to find the best deals. Instead of hunting for coupon codes (that don't always work!) and opening tons of browser tabs comparing prices, you can try Capital One Shopping.
Capital One Shopping makes saving money effortless. Just add the browser extension and when you check out, it'll scour the internet for coupon codes to help you save cash. And before you check out at 25+ major retailers, Capital One Shopping will notify you with a friendly pop-up if the item you're buying is available cheaper somewhere else.
Capital One Shopping is free to use and won't show you ads. Add it today and stop overpaying!2
Okay, we’ll concede that some new modern smart fridge features are cool. Some appliances use an internal camera to show you the contents of your fridge from your phone, for example.
But the “cutting-edge” ability to play recipe videos and update the family calendar on your fridge are technological advances we achieved years ago with smartphones and $8 whiteboards from Target.
Countertop pizza oven
You probably already own an oven that cooks pizza just fine. And even if you don’t, a countertop pizza oven may only cook smaller pies, meaning you’ll spend a lot of time cooking small pizzas sequentially if you have more than one or two people to feed.
It’s probably more efficient to go out when you’re craving authentic New York-style or brick-fired pizza and use a standard oven to make pizzas at home the rest of the time.
Fat-burning ab belt
This gadget made Time magazine’s list of 50 worst inventions, so that should tell you something.
Some studies have found that electrically stimulating abdominal belts can increase core strength but have minimal effects on changing your appearance. If you want rock-hard abs, you’ll have to do the crunches yourself.
Electric wine bottle opener
Some inventions, such as a corkscrew, are so simple and effective that they don’t need to be improved upon.
Unless you have arthritis or you’re a server opening dozens of bottles in an evening, you can safely give the purchase of an electric wine bottle opener a pass.
Many different kitchen gadgets can be used to cook eggs: pots, pans, microwaves, waffle makers, ovens, instant pots, and more.
So, even if you love eggs, there’s little justification for purchasing a device dedicated specifically to cooking them.
Making bread in a stand mixer is just as easy as using a breadmaker, and the results are often better.
Breadmaker bread often comes out crusty and dry. This gadget falls solidly in the category of one extra thing you don’t need that simply takes up space on your kitchen counter.
It can be easy to be attracted to shiny new tech gadgets. However, many of these products solve niche problems and are unnecessary in the end.
If the item you’re considering is likely to end up in a giveaway box or the landfill soon, consider skipping the purchase and saving the money to get ahead financially.
Discover®️ Cashback Checking Benefits
- Earn 1% cash back on up to $3,000 in debit card purchases each month1
- No minimum deposit, no minimum balance, and no account fees
- Access your paycheck up to 2 days early with Early Pay
- 60K+ fee-free ATMs and make cash deposits at Walmart stores nationwide