5 Android apps to help with last-minute holiday shopping

PANIC!!11! You have a tree sitting in the back yard waiting to be decorated, in-laws coming into town tomorrow, cookies to finish baking for the office gift swap, and you still have three people to buy for - at least two of whom can make your daily life miserable if they don’t like what you get them. While your phone might not be able to help with everything on that list, it can definitely help you get your shopping done. Here are five Android apps to help get your holiday shopping done quickly so you can focus on handling the rest of the holiday insanity.

Amazon Mobile

As it turns out, you can still get stuff from Amazon on two-day shipping until Friday, which is free if you’re an Amazon Prime subscriber. Even if you’re cutting it close, you can get one-day shipping on Saturday. Amazon’s Android app has the full range of shopping functions that you would expect: categorized browsing, search, and the ability to check the status of current orders. There are some handy advanced features too, such as barcode scanning if you want to do some quick price comparisons, and notifications of lightning deals.

Myibidder Sniper

With shipping times being what they are and not much time to spare, you can’t afford to lose any important eBay auctions. Myibidder Sniper is built specifically to make sure you get the last bid in at the very last moment. Sure, it might be fighting dirty, but Christmas shopping is a dirty business. The Pro version allows you to place snipes on groups of items, so that as soon as you’ve won as many of them as you like, the snipes on the remainders are canceled.


Of course, leaving the fate of your holiday gifts to the fickle Gods of Shipping may cause a bit more stress than you can bear at this point. For local bargain hunting, ShopSavvy continues to be a popular app. Originally, ShopSavvy was simply a product barcode scanning app, but now it rakes in local deals from Groupon, Best Buy, Staples, Walmart, and other sources. For good measure, ShopSavvy also offers plain-jane manual product searches both for local and online stores. Their latest new feature is something called ShopSavvy Live which allows users to share what they're shopping around for, allowing the community at large to comment on the product in question. 


Google’s own Shopper app is highly polished, and has a lot of curated categories for gifts to help you find something just right. You can find goods through text, voice, or barcode search, or cruise through local deals to see what’s available on the cheap. Individual product entries include reviews, images, and the ability to share out to Facebook, e-mail, and whatever else is available through the system menu. 


Sometimes the biggest challenge isn’t finding something and getting, but rather knowing what to look for in the first place. The Fancy is similar to Pinterest, in that users post pictures and links to cool stuff in themed collections, but there’s a more direct path to actual shopping. As soon as you log into the app, you’re offered a spot where you can e-mail Fancy’s experts for gift ideas, and they’ll try to find stuff closest to your criteria. Once you find something you like, you can mark it as something you like, or visit the online store where the thingamagic is available. Fancy does a great job of surfacing particularly unique items, and even if you can’t quite get your hands on one, odds are good that you’ll get some great ideas of what to look for.

Honorable Mentions: ShopAdvisor, PriceGrabber, Google Maps (to find your stores, of course)

So, do you still have holiday shopping to do? Which apps do you use to get all of your presents sorted? Do you prefer hitting the brick and mortar stores, or ordering online? 

Simon Sage
Simon has been covering mobile since before the first iPhone came out. After producing news articles, podcasts, review videos, and everything in between, he's now helping industry partners get the word about their latest products. Get in touch with him at simon@futurenet.com.