Software News tagged "Sniping"
Windows-based eBay searching and sniping tool AuctionSleuth has been retired.
A message on the AuctionSleuth home page reads "AuctionSleuth is being retired. It's been a fun 12+ years. The effort required to keep up with the ever changing eBay and declining sales, forces me to lay AuctionSleuth down for a rest. I'd like to personally thank the 2000+ users that have supported AuctionSleuth over its 12+ year life."
AuctionSleuth was originally released in 2002.
The email read: "At 11 Main you'll score really unique items from thousands of hand-selected specialty shops and boutiques without any of the auction hassle. Heck, you won't even need to use us to get these great products." and included a 30% discount code off a first purchase from the site.
Desktop sniping tool JoyBidder has launched a hosted sniping service add-on.
The JoyBidder sniping service submits bids from a server, so users do not need to keep JoyBidder running on their computer. The service is optional and costs $9.95 for 40 pre-paid snipes or $15.95 per month for unlimited snipes.
Sniping tool Gixen is testing a new payment model for less frequent users of the service.
Selected users are being offered the option to upgrade to the Gixen Mirror service for six 15-day periods of their choosing for $6, the same price as the annual Mirror subscription, but with the benefit that the periods can be spread out over a longer time.
The update means that the standard edition of Auction Sentry will no longer be supported as the new version includes all the functionality of the former Deluxe edition.
Popular web-based sniper Gixen has made its Desktop Manager software available to free subscribers as well as those subscribing to the "mirror" service (at $6 per year).
The Gixen Desktop Manager provides access to Gixen's sniping features, as well as frequent price updates, from a Windows desktop application.
Gixen has also enhanced its bid groups feature by enabling users to specify that they want to win more than one auction in a group. For example, a user could create a group of five auctions and specify that bids should be placed until they have won two of the auctions.
- Order manager Zazanaire manages and monitors order status, prints shipping labels, sends message to buyers etc.
- goSnipe is a new web-based sniper
- A trio of new products from Just Applications include courier booking service PayPerParcel, template design service Just Template IT, and eBay listing tool Ad-Lister
- Ebeezy is a new eBay template and store design service
Popular web-based sniping tool Gixen now offers a Windows application which monitors auctions and manages snipes.
The snipe bids themselves are still submitted by Gixen's servers, and the desktop tool - currently an early alpha version - is only available to "mirror" service subscribers. More information.
Web-based eBay sniping service Gixen now offers unlimited snipes for free. Previously free users were limited to ten concurrent snipes.
The Gixen Mirror service, at $6 per year, offers higher reliability, no ads, CSV export, and use of the Gixen API - for integrating the service with other software.
Sniping service Bidnapper is running two offers for new customers to obtain one year of free sniping, worth $49.99.
The second offer enables eBay sellers to offer their customers a coupon for a free subscription, at no cost to the seller. Sellers can create coupons here.
Sniping tool myibay (My iBay) has drawn bemused responses from their users after announcing that it has changed its name to myiboy.
myibay announced the name change on its home page with the explanation that it is "easy to remember and put[s] more sense into the name". However, there is no evidence of the new name in the site logo or URL, and a thread in the user forum suggests they are not yet dead set on becoming myiboy. The discussion also hints that the real reason for changing the name is similarity to eBay's "My eBay" trademark.
Snappily-named myibay user 'dysguyz' helpfully suggested they change their name to iSnipe, MyiSnypr or SnypBuyr. myibay did not take up any of those suggestions.
The cash back feature, called "Buyer's Club", helps users to participate in cash back programs to receive credit for purchases.
The UnWiredBuyer function allows users to monitor the final minutes of an auction when they are away from their computer. The system calls them by phone in the last 3 minutes and announces the auction status including the current bid amount. The user may also place a bid on eBay over the phone, by following voice prompts, if bidding has gone above the snipe value they have set.
New features include:
- Simultaneous auction sniping for multiple eBay accounts
- Advanced "smart" bidgroups that follow multiple bidgroup rules and contingency bidding
- Instant email and SMS win/loss and outbid notifications
- Support center with FAQ, tutorial articles, videos, community forum, 24/7 email support, and live support chat
GavelThief will be released to the public for beta testing on Saturday, May 16th via www.gavelthief.com.
Users of free sniping service Goofbay have received an erroneous email from eBay stating that their account has been compromised and items listed on their account.
Goofbay has stated in an email to users that accounts were not compromised, and the issue has affected many other sniping services. The message was a generic eBay email triggered by an internal security system, Goofbay claim, and eBay are planning to tell users who received the erroneous email that their accounts were not compromised/hijacked.
Online sniping service GavelThief has closed down after only 7 months.
Owner and developer Preston Lanier claims that eBay had taken measures against the service which meant it could no longer place bids reliably. Lanier said that eBay had flagged the addresses of all of their servers and was requiring image verification that the software could not pass. Lanier is now developing a desktop sniping application.
GavelThief was created in July of 2008 and released for public use in October. They had approximately 500 users and placed an average of 320 snipes per day.
Automated bidding is prohibited by the eBay user agreement, but has generally been tolerated by the company.
Sniping tools are suffering again, following on from the impact last month of eBay's Weak Passwords Policy.
Mario Vodopivec of Gixen traces the problem to the new Paperless Payments Policy. This requires sellers on eBay.com to accept only paperless payments (PayPal or credit cards), causing auctions from outside the US which don't accept PayPal to be mssing from the US eBay site - the site many sniping services use to get item details and place bids.
Mario explains "On October 27th eBay broke most sniping services and software when it started restricting some items to be viewed only on their respective eBay country sites. German customers seem to be the most affected. This happens because most sniping services work with ebay.com only; so if a listing is visible only on ebay.de, most sniping services won't work with it."
A number of sniping services, including Gixen, have since released fixes for the problem.
A number of sniping tools have reported missed bids due to eBay's new "weak password policy".
Under the new policy, eBay shows security warnings to users with passwords they have determined to be less than strong, encouraging these users to change their passwords to something more secure. The warning has blocked some bids from sniping services such as Bidnapper and JustSnipe.
eBay advises users to choose passwords with a combination of at least 6 to 8 letters, numbers, and special characters; or multiple words without spaces. Passwords should not consist of single words or easily obtainable personal information, and should not contain part of a user ID, email address, or words related to eBay or a hobby.
eBay's group bidding tool Bid Assistant is being removed from the site, less than 18 months after it was introduced.
Bid Assistant offered Bid Groups, a feature common in sniping programs, which allows a buyer to set bids on several items, but with the aim of winning only one.
Henri Huch, from eBay’s Buyer Experience team, said the removal was "part of our ongoing efforts to simplify the site and remove features that have very low usage."
Web-based sniper JustSnipe now supports bid groups, which they are calling "Snipe Groups".
Bid groups is a common feature in sniping tools. It allows you to win one (or more) auctions in a group, and automatically cancel bidding on the remaining auctions - so several auctions can be scheduled for bidding in advance even if you only want to win one of them.
JustSnipe offers users 5 free bids per week, or is $5.00 per month for unlimited snipes.
Sniping tool Bidnapper can now place last-minute bids on eBay plus 23 other auction sites.
The newly supported sites include uBid, Bidz, Liquidation.com, eBid, Overstock Auctions, CQout, ePier, Yahoo! Japan, Allegro, and Aukro.
Bidnapper are looking at further extending their support to sites such as Dell Auctions, QXL, Ricardo, Eachnet, and Taobao.
Although there is no connection to Auctiva declared on the Auction Sentry website, Auction Sentry users have reported that their renewal payments go to Auctiva's PayPal account. Indeed, clicking the "Purchase" button on the Auction Sentry website leads to a PayPal page clearly stating "PayPal securely processes payments for Auctiva". The new Auction Sentry forum and reviews on this web site also claim that Auctiva has acquired the sniping tool.
Why would an auction management solutions provider acquire a sniping tool? There is no obvious answer to that. Auctiva has been in the eBay tools market for many years but came to new prominence since the launch of their free service. They acquired Sellathon - a company that logs and analyzes eBay auction visits - quietly in January 2007.
As an eBay Certified Solution Provider, running a sniping service could put Auctiva in a difficult position. Sniping tools cannot use eBay's official interface so must use "page-scraping" to access the site, which is technically prohibited by the eBay User Agreement but normally tolerated by eBay.
We have another new article by Sam Carson, covering free tools for eBay buyers.
Sam uses these tools to buy bargain Harry Potter toys for his niece and nephew.
A number of web-based sniping services reported eBay account login failures around the end of July. It now appears that this was due to eBay incorrectly marking accounts as having "Unauthorized third party access" and changing the users' eBay passwords.
The issue, identified by eSnipe and Snip, among others, has now been resolved by eBay but it highlights the vulnerability of web-based sniping. These services duplicate the normal eBay login process, but because the login comes a computer that is not at the user's normal location, eBay may wrongly classify the login as an account highjacking and change the user's password as a damage-limitation measure.