New Slice Gives Shoppers More Ways to Save Time and Money – or Even a Life

Ensuring You Never Miss a Bargain or a Keep a Dud, the Highly-Rated App Now Surfaces Real-Time Price Drops, Product Recalls, and Delivers Personal Spending Analysis

PALO ALTO, Calif. (July 10, 2014) – Slice, the free mobile and online app that is every smart shopper’s essential companion, today released version 5.0, a new design that delivers additional ways people can instantly save time and money. Leveraging Apple’s immersive design and technical capabilities, the highly-rated app now delivers visual shipment tracking, personalized spending analysis, and real-time price drops and product recall alerts, helping people make more informed purchase decisions.

The convenience of online shopping has an inconvenient byproduct of e-receipts and e-mail notifications, which flood inboxes, making simple tasks (returns, expense tracking, shipment timing, etc.) a major hassle. Slice cuts through the clutter and keeps tabs on your purchases in a whole new way. The latest features deliver organization and savings in a beautiful interface, including:

  • Price Drops - A real-time, network-wide feed of the latest price drops, streaming online retailer sales and deals for anyone who loves a bargain!
  • Product Recalls – The Consumer Product Safety Commission’s real-time list of all product recalls issued help shoppers avoid flawed and dangerous products that can cause injury or sometimes death.
  • Slice & Dice” – Play with your purchases! A fun, interactive display of the individual user’s spending data broken down by retailer and purchase type, as seen by year, month, week and day.

Cash Pushed Through the App

Slice users already save big bucks thanks to price drop notifications, alerting shoppers to hundreds of thousands of dollars in effortless savings, averaging $23.32 per notification. The new “Discover” feature lets all Slice users in on the action by illuminating every price drop notification occurring live across the Slice network.

“Our users tell us time and again that they love our package tracking feature, but the latest Slice app has so much more to offer,” says Thad Hwang, vice president of consumer products for Slice. “Slice 5.0 takes an enormous amount of information about your purchases and makes it organized, accessible and actionable. We take care of the nitty gritty details, so people can focus on the fun of shopping.”

The new Slice takes full advantage of Apple’s immersive design and technical capabilities, including gestures and the accelerometer, to include bigger product images, striking graphic design, and a more intuitive user experience. Bringing this technology to life, the “Slice & Dice” feature delivers a personalized “gamified” analysis of each shopper’s online spending using floating, interactive bubbles that expand and contract to represent spending by category, retailer, and purchase type.

The new Slice app is free and available in the App StoreFor more information, please check out this video or visit www.slice.com. 

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About Slice:

Slice is online shopping, smarter. Its free mobile and online app is every smart shopper’s essential companion. By safely accessing and organizing electronic receipts via email, the Slice app tracks the progress of purchases and shipments, analyzes spending habits, and sends alerts about price adjustments and product recalls, making it easy to save money – or even a life.

Slice has processed more than 160 million items to date for a total purchase value of over $4 billion. Slice was listed in Lifehacker’s best iPhone and Android apps of 2013, named one of the “Best Productivity Apps of 2012” and one of the “World’s Greatest Apps” in 2013  by Business Insider and was selected as an Official Honoree in The 17th Annual Webby Awards in the Utilities & Services category.

Based in Palo Alto, CA, Slice is backed by DCM, FLOODGATE, Innovation Endeavors (Eric Schmidt), Lightspeed Venture Partners, NPD Group, Rakuten, and Siguler Guff, as well as Michael Birch and Rick Thompson. To learn more about Slice, visit www.slice.com.

 

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Media Contacts:

Grayling PR for Slice

Frankie Timmons

slice@grayling.com

Tips: Keeping Up with Product Recalls

recallphotoProduct recalls are an unwelcome surprise. They are most often not widely advertised – you are lucky if you turn on the news when they are announcing a major recall, or get a notice in the mail. If you have Slice, you can breathe easy, knowing that we are monitoring recalls around the clock, and will alert you if something you bought online is subject to a recall. We will also help you get that item replaced!

But we know sometimes you buy things offline, especially baby products, which are also some of the most commonly recalled items, as well as large electronics and appliances. Unfortunately it’s on you to check whether an item you purchased is recalled—and here’s how you do it.

How do I keep track? There are several online resources you can use to keep track of product recalls. If you live in the U.S., the main resource is Recalls.gov, which divides recalls into nine different categories and updates every time a product is recalled. The website also lets you search for specific recalls from all national agencies (the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, the Food & Drug Administration and the U.S. Department of Agriculture) and has a link to subscribe to email recall lists from said agencies.

You can also visit the specific sites of agencies. The Consumer Product Safety Commission keeps an active list of recalls and has a consumer hotline where you can report unsafe products. The FDA also has a Recalls, Market Withdrawals, and Safety Alerts section as well as an archive for recalls over 60 days old.

Don’t live in the U.S.? No worries! There are country-specific resources you can access that will alert you of recalls in your area. If you’re in the UK, check out RecallUK’s comprehensive list. Canada’s main resource is Health Canada. For Australians, take a look at Product Safety Recalls.

What products can be recalled? Electronics, baby items, clothes, food, transportation, furniture, drugs, cosmetics and animal health products are often subject to recalls. Risks can range from mild to serious, and it’s always best to pay attention to the manufacturer’s recall instructions, which will indicate severity.

What to do if a product you own is recalled: Take a look at the manufacturer’s website (or, for ease, do a quick Google search with the name of the company followed by ‘recall’ – the direct link to the manufacturer’s recalls should come up within the first page of results). If a product is being recalled, the manufacturer should provide more detailed instructions on further steps, including how returns work or whether any replacement parts are offered if appropriate to the item. They will also provide a contact number you can reach out to with questions or concerns. Remember: if a recall is serious and could pose a hazard, set the product aside until further instruction from the manufacturer.

The easiest way to stay on top of recalls is to download Slice and shop online. We worry about the recalls so you can enjoy your purchases and take comfort in knowing you are safe from faulty products. Get the Slice app here

Getting Crafty with Packaging

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When shopping online for yourself, it’s easy to shrug off packaging. But when delivering a present for someone else, you want to wow the gift recipient. We could even go as far as saying a gift is an extension of yourself, something the recipient will think of you by, so standing out is a good goal (no pressure!). We’ve put together a…ahem… WRAP UP  of crafty packaging ideas and tips you can use to liven up any present.

Get creative! You already know Gift Wrapping 101 (and if you’re not certain of how to wrap a gift, Spoonful has a handy guide to the basics), but this year you want to spice things up, to make packaging fun, a part of the gift itself. Getting a gift that is wrapped in an original way indicates extra care and attention from the gift-giver. Plus, how fun is it to unwrap a package that is not the average paper and bow found at the drugstore? Here are some online finds to make your package stand out:

  • Want to skip the wrapping paper? Some eco-friendly, reusable alternatives to enclose your item include using a small burlap bag (see options on Amazon) or a handmade paper bag (see World Market).
  • To decorate a gift box, you can make an origami flower – it’s easy, and all you need is colorful paper (we get ours from Paper Jade).
  • Washi tape, decorative masking tape originating from Japan which you can use to seal or adorn a package, is getting major recognition on DIY blogs lately. Check out some options on Etsy and skim this Buzzfeed post on creative uses of the medium (not only limited to gift-wrapping)!
  • Going a more traditional, non- DIY route? You can still imbue your package with originality – shopping online is an advantage, and The Container Store and Zazzle have cute gift packaging options that are not just  seasonal or limited to major holidays.

Personalize it. Incorporate their interests into the wrapping itself.  If that person is, say, a movie lover, why not find wrapping paper with an illustration of their favorite movie or hot glue a small trinket of movie memorabilia on top of the box?

On a budget? Repurpose! Gift wrapping materials can get expensive quickly, so reuse what you can. If you read the newspaper, consider using some pages as gift wrap. Have artificial flowers you’ve grown tired of? Cut off the stem and decorate the gift box. Or perhaps you have an old brooch laying around that you have no use for anymore and you know your recipient adores accessories – glue it on and your gift will make a statement! Plus, you get to save the environment along the way. Win/win!

Think long term. Can you incorporate something into your gift wrapping that your acquaintance will be able to use at some point? For example, ReUseIt has reusable gift wrap your gift recipient will adore you for when it’s their turn to give presents. A double gift!

As for the packages you order online…Say you’re on a timeline and just want to order a present online and send it directly to someone, or maybe you’re just waiting for those wrapping materials to get to you. At Slice we eliminate the dreaded cyber-silence – the days (or maybe even the week or two) when you are out of the loop regarding where the package is or when the person might receive it – that often comes after pressing “buy.” We have your back and make sure you know where your orders are at all times so your online shopping experience, rather than being a rollercoaster of the excitement of a purchase followed by a void, is more controlled.

 

Brides: How to Stay Organized and On Budget

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Planning a wedding can seem like a daunting task.  But that shouldn’t equate to you pulling your hair out because of missed steps and sweating over money overspent or miscellaneous things that may go awry in the planning stages. No matter how big your Big Day is–a low-key, family and friends event, a grand soiree or a destination wedding–your BFFs at Slice we want to help you stay on track and within your limits in the planning stages so the final celebration is just that: a joyful occasion to remember (for the right reasons).

Make a budget (and stick to it!). Getting married shouldn’t have to mean dishing out money extravagantly or spending outside your comfort zone. With weddings there will always be tempting (and derailing) add-ons…that draping, the photo booth, those ceremony decorations… and they are hard to resist! But think about it: if you stick to what you know you can afford you won’t be stressed to pull together funds or worry about how you’re going to pay for all that. A tip: if everyone is contributing to fund the event, pool all the money together before you start making decisions so you know just how much you can spend. Real Simple has made a planning spreadsheet with budget suggestions you can fill out along the way.

Watch out for those pesky extras! Be aware that certain extras, like overtime costs or cost of cleanup, will only come up the day of and might be inevitable. If you factor them into your budget ahead of time and maybe even make a separate account just for the unexpected, no nasty surprises will come your way.

A budget doesn’t mean you can’t splurge! The gown of your dreams? You can still consider it a possibility – that is, if you adjust your other wedding needs to fit a tighter wallet. For example, could you plan your wedding to take place January-April? This, bridal expert Sharon Naylor explains, is when weddings packages are cheaper. Also think long-term – if you splurge on gorgeous Louboutins, could you wear them again on some other occasion(s)?

Time flies (when you’re having fun). It’s great to be in love and bask in the excitement of the moment (and so you should!), but the big day will be here sooner than you expect, so get planning early on (i.e. months). Avoid upsets by setting goals (“I want to have the invites sent by…”) and keeping a calendar with important dates – meetings with vendors, calls with locales, dress fittings – where you can see it. The Knot has a calendar countdown you might follow.

Talk! Planning independently can be incredibly time-consuming. If the groom is involved in the planning, you will have a monumental shared experience and probably nail down all the details faster. Just make sure to keep an open line of communication – sit down and set out, clearly, who’ll be doing what to avoid double-bookings or missed reservations.

Buy online, outsource stress.  Keeping track of everything you’ve bought and managing returns can be a big pain, and if you aren’t organized, it can’t be costly. Buy online and let Slice organize your receipts, track those shipments, help with returns and even save money with price drop notifications.  No offense to your Maid of Honor, but the Slice app will be your BFF as you manage the growing pile of small details.

Planning for a wedding non-stop can be exhausting, so take a break. Hang out with friends, read a book, get a massage – you deserve it!

Host the Perfect 4th of July BBQ, Keep Your Financial Independence

IvyRooftop_r620x413The Fourth of July is on a Friday this year, which means it can be extra-festive – no need to take additional vacation days and you have the entire weekend to recover! So, there’s never been a better time to to flex your hosting muscle–so long as you don’t make a rookie mistake and stress yourself and your bank account by failing to plan ahead.  Here’s how you put on Fourth of July Fiesta like a pro.

Liven it up with decorations. The ideal is an animated, patriotic party. A stars and stripes motif and a red, white and blue color palette are musts. You can buy fairly inexpensive decorations from Party City,  currently offering free shipping for orders over $75 if you order by June 24th, or from Oriental Trading, which has discounted patriotic items like flags, pin wheels and colorful paper lanterns. Invest in decorations you can use in upcoming years, not simply on throwaways. You can also get ideas for 4th of July decorations, recipe and fashion from Slice’s Pinterest page.

Send online invitations! Why spend money on physical cards when perfectly awesome options are available online for free? Evite and Paperless Post have 4th of July card designs you can send to friends via email at no cost. You can request that guests RSVP, which will make estimating the amount of food you need to buy much easier. You can also make a Facebook event and regulate whether the event is Open, Closed or Secret.

Reserve your space. If you like in an apartment complex, get to the grill early or consider renting out the common room if you’re having a larger event (though be aware that there is usually a reservation deposit). And if you have no room in your yard to host a party, you can still find parks near you that have BBQ grills (a quick Google search will do).

Save a trip to the grocery store. When you order groceries online from a delivery service you don’t have to worry about stores running out of the items you need (likely to happen in the 4th of July rush) or wasting precious gas money. Google Shopping Express (if you live in the Bay Area, West L.A., or New York City) gets you same-day or overnight delivery of groceries from the nearest local vendors. They also offer a promotion of $10 off your first order and six months of free shipping for new members. Amazon Fresh is also a convenient option for people living in the Seattle, San Francisco and the LA area. As for recipe ideas, check out Southern Living and the Food Network’s tasty tips.

Stay Organized. Don’t lose your mind, or your packages–get the Slice app!  We’ll keep track of your packages, be they decorations or food, so all you have to do is get to celebrating and enjoy your guests!