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March 11, 2011

Unused gadgets clutter up homes

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by Brian Turner

Top 20 unused gadgets (according to npower):

1. Gym / sports equipment
2. Blender
3. Curling tongs
4. Grilling machine
5. Foot spa
6. Steamer
7. Sandwich maker
8. Coffee machine
9. Games console
10. Egg poacher
11. Drinks maker
12. Bread maker
13. Alarm clock
14. Fondue set
15. Electric carving knife
16. DVD player
17. Electric juicer
18. Printer
19. Slow cooker
20. Deep fat fryer

Gym and sports equipment, blenders and curling tongs have topped a list of household gadgets which are never used it emerged yesterday.

Researchers found four out of five homes are crammed full of goods which were bought on a whim and discarded within days due to a lack of interest.

Old or out-of-date DVD players, printers, egg poachers and sandwich toasters are also likely to be gathering dust in garages, lofts and cupboards.

Fondue sets, juicers and electric carving knives also made the list which was compiled by npower.

Nikki Hadcroft, creative services manager for npower, said: ”It is hard to keep up with the various changes in technology, and even harder to guess which gadgets are worth investing in and which aren’t.

”This is why so many people buy items which turn out to be useless - they’ll be gadgets they’ve bought on a whim without doing any real research, or those which haven’t got a long shelf life.

”More than half of our respondents considered themselves to be fairly techno-savvy, and yet they still bought items for the house which now sit at the back of the cupboards or in the attic.”

Despite more than half of people claiming to be ‘techno-savvy’ - two thirds buy new technology or household products which they don’t really need.

And 34 per cent of the 2,000 people polled said they were left disappointed after buying a new gadget, only to realise it was completely pointless.

Other items deemed to be useless were steamers, slow cookers and exercise equipment such as rowing and running machines.

The research also revealed Brits spend an average of #40 a month on gadgets in the hope they will make their lives easier.

A fifth hope to make their homes more energy efficient and one in ten want to keep up with the Joneses’.

However 23 per cent admit they simply like to have the latest technology in their home, with one in 16 confessing to buying ‘every gadget going’.

Encouragingly, one in ten people plan to invest in solar panels, smart metres and hybrid cars in the next few years.

And already more than three quarters already use energy efficient light-bulbs and one in six have light timers installed in their home.

Nevertheless a fifth of Brits admit to frequently buying items on a bit of a whim, knowing they’ll probably never use them and 13 per cent never worked out how to use some of the more complex gadgets in the house.

A quarter of people polled reckon many of their useless gadgets were bought for them by friends and family, while 13 per cent bought them for a partner who doesn’t use them.

Two thirds find it incredibly frustrating when they buy something, only to find a newer version is released just six months later making their model useless or old fashioned.

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