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The official blog of Abt Electronics & Appliances

Apple Announces iPhone 6S an 6S Plus

September 9th, 2015

As expected, today Apple announced refreshes to the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, with both being upgraded to “S” versions, which means that while the form factor stayed the same, each model received internal upgrades that will improve performance in many different aspects.

While both the 6S and 6s Plus are shaped the same as their predecessors (so your cases and other accessories will still fit), there are some significant differences in the construction of each phone. To start with, Apple has upgraded the body of the phones to a new 7000-series aluminum alloy, which is purported to be much stronger than the alloy used in previous phones. This should ease any worries about the phones’ durability and avoid another Bendgate. Additionally, the display glass has been upgraded to an Ion-X glass panel (the same used on the Apple Watch), which is stronger than any used on an iPhone before and, according to Apple, “the most durable in the smartphone industry.”

Beneath that extra-strong glass is one of Apple’s premier features, 3D Touch. 3D Touch lets the iPhone touchscreen recognize the variable amount of pressure a user applies when interacting with the phone, assigning different levels of touch the ability to perform different tasks. In many apps, this can take the place of a double-tap. Touch a thumbnail of a photo in your gallery to open that photo, press a little harder to zoom in. It’s likely most native iOS apps will take advantage of this. Working in conjunction with the new 3D Touch system is the all-new Taptic Engine system, which provides haptic feedback quicker and more accurately, promising an all-around quicker, more responsive interactive experience.


iOS 9 and 3D Touch will allow for all-new ways of interacting with your apps, like pulling up brief email info without entering the app.



Other promising refinements include a new 12-megapixel camera module, which should improve the already class-leading image quality of the iPhone 6. The new camera also allows for the capture of “Live Photos,” which exist somewhere between a GIF and a short video clip, capturing the sound and brief moments before and after you snap a picture. Rounding out the new features of the main camera is 4K movie capture, giving iPhone filmmakers some serious video chops. Around front, the FaceTime camera has been bumped to 5-megapixels, and is complemented by Retina Flash, a feature that turns the iPhone display into a camera flash, ensuring your selfies are always perfectly lit.

iphone 6s rose gold

The iPhone 6s and 6s Plus will be available in the same finishes as the iPhone 6 models, as well as the Rose Gold finish familiar to the Apple Watch.


Underneath it all, the new A9 processor promises to run phone tasks up to 70% faster, with a bump in graphics processing up to 90%. iOS9 promises to be more responsive, intuitive and secure, while extending battery life. Users can also expect faster Wi-Fi and LTE speeds. And of course, Apple Pay and Touch ID are both present in the new models. Preorders for the new iPhone 6s and 6 S Plus start on September 12th, with the phones available on September 25th, in the familiar iPhone 6 colors—Silver, Space Gray, and Gold—along with a new Rose Gold finish.

Apple New Product Announcements

September 8th, 2015

It’s the second week in September, which means it’s time for new product announcements from Apple. Coming a year and a day after the iPhone 6 announcement, tomorrow’s event is expected to bring a refresh to the current line of iPhones and iPads, as well as the Apple TV. Like the iPhone 4S and 5S models, tomorrow’s new iPhones will likely bring refinements to the processor, RAM and camera modules, making already excellent phones even better.

iphone 6s

Interestingly, the biggest news out of tomorrow’s announcement will likely be for products other than the iPhone. Rumor mills are abuzz with talk of a significantly-improved Apple TV, which hasn’t seen a refresh since early 2013. The new Apple TV would have beefed up internals which would bolster its gaming abilities, and may also see the debut of a new remote with touchpad and built-in microphone. Perhaps most exciting is the possibility of 4K support, which would make the Apple TV a very desirable addition to the home theater of any videophile.

Also possible tomorrow is the announcement of a larger iPad. Larger tablets, like the Windows Surface Pro 3 and Samsung Galaxy Note Pro, have been extremely popular with users looking for a tablet that can function as a laptop replacement. Apple may answer their competitors with an iPad “Pro” model, increasing the size of their tablet—which has never measured longer than ten inches—to fit a 12″ screen.

Check back tomorrow for full details on Apple’s announcement, and for words from our Apple guru and all-around technology expert, Josh.

Save Big During the Abt Labor Day Sale!

September 2nd, 2015

Labor day savings

The Abt Labor Day Sale is going on now, in-store and online! Shop huge savings on appliances, electronics, and more. Visit the Labor Day Savings page for more info. Chicago-area customers, there is still time to replace your ACs and yes, we can install it for you!

Back to School with Abt.

August 25th, 2015

August is nearly over, which means that all of our school-aged fans are probably back in class by now. We hope everyone has readjusted to homework, heavy backpacks and early mornings! Here’s a look back at our visit to the WGN-TV Back to School Kids Fair earlier this month.






Win $1000 Towards a New Samsung Fridge at Abt!

August 14th, 2015


If you’ve been holding out on replacing an aging fridge, keep on reading! Abt is partnering up with Samsung to give one lucky winner a $1000 Abt Gift Card that can be used towards the purchase of any new Samsung refrigerator. Entering is easy:

  1.  Snap a photo of your old fridge
  2. Follow us on social media: Abt Facebook, Abt Twitter, Abt Instagram
  3. Tag your photo with #SamsungAtAbt and share it on Twitter and Instagram, or post it to Abt’s Facebook page.

And that’s it! Each tag will count as one entry, giving you a total of three entries. A winner will be chose at random from all entries to receive a $1000 Abt gift card that can be applied to any of the Samsung refrigerators that Abt carries.

Additionally, the purchase of certain Samsung fridge models will qualify you for a $150 Visa prepaid gift card, so you can fill your fridge with groceries. Samsung #FillYourFridge Details.

Samsung appliances can be shipped to the entire country, so customer both local and nationwide are eligible to enter! The contest only lasts until August 26th, so make sure to get your entries in before then!

Official Rules

Race For the Kids R/C Car Fundraiser Returns to Abt!

August 6th, 2015

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Attention, R/C race car fans! Looking for something to do next weekend? Stop by Abt on Sunday, August 16th, from 10:30am-5pm, for the 2nd Annual Race for the Kids Charity Radio Control Car Race, a fundraiser for the For Autistic Kids Foundation. Racing will take place all day, and drivers of all skill levels and racing disciplines are welcome to enter.

(Entry Fees:
1st Class – $20
2nd Class – $15
3rd Class – $10
4th Class – $5)

The following race classes will be running: Rookie, Tamiya Mini, Vintage Trans-Am, USGT, 17.5 Touring Car, and Drifting.

Not a racer? In addition to a day full of racing, there will be plenty of activities that non-racers can enjoy, including vendor displays, drone demonstrations, a racing simulator, food, raffles, music and more! Check out the video below for a recap of last year’s action, and hopefully we’ll see you on Sunday!

Why Choose Abt?

July 27th, 2015

Abt has a long history as a company run not just  by a family, but run as a family. Even with more than 1200 employees, most of us grow close enough to our co-workers to consider them a second family. Members of this extended Abt family stay with the company for long periods of their careers, developing a loyalty that has many of them turning down job offers at larger companies, or commuting distances that some would consider unreasonable, just to work at Abt. We often get to hear from customers about why they choose Abt, but for a change we decided to look a little closer to home and ask our own employees: Why Abt?

Most will tell you that it’s all about the people. Agnes B, a member of the appliance sales staff, has been with the company for 17 years. When asked why she’s stayed so long, her immediate response was, “Abt is my home away from home.” From the day she started, “it was easy to make friends, and Abt had a friendly working environment.” It’s not uncommon to find people in every department across the store who have been here ten, fifteen, or twenty years. When you spend that much time together, it’s impossible not to become close, to find a best friend, or even your soul-mate—dozens of couples who met at Abt have gone on to get married! Agnes recently found herself running 200 miles across Wisconsin and Illinois with 11 of her Abt co-workers.


Half of the Abt Ragnar Relay team.

Others got hooked by the chance to learn something new or move up in the ranks from one position to the next (we prefer to promote from within), which is one of the reasons so many employees have such long tenures here. Tim M, a 20-year veteran,  loves the front-line access to today’s most advanced products. A passion for cooking started him out selling high-end kitchen appliances, but he’s since transitioned to a position in the custom audio department.  He says that the way technology advances  in the home entertainment industry brings a challenge to the job, but with it comes  a great learning experience. And getting hands-on experience with countless brand-new tech toys—like the dozens of high-end, 4K TVs that surround his salesfloor—is just one of the perks of his position. Tim is one of our long-distance commuters, racking up over 100 miles each day on his roundtrip drive. Ask him if it’s worth it, and he’ll tell you yes, in part because “the Abts are a great family to work for, and they treat their employees well.” Okay, but how does he feel about the rest of the people around him? For the answer, just look towards his favorite golf course, where every other Wednesday he gets in a round or two with eleven of his Abt co-workers.

FAK 3 Point Shoot Out

Fierce, but friendly, competition at the semi-annual For Autistic Kids 3-Point Shooutout in the Abt gym.

The family theme runs through most anecdotes, but for some, it goes deeper than just a general sense of connection, to very personal relationship with one very special man, Bob Abt. Bob, known alternately as “Mr. Abt,” has always prided himself on not just the overall family environment at Abt, but his efforts to personally connect with as many of his employees as possible, in every department throughout the store. Lance N was a manager at a competing store over 25 years ago. He was well-known and well-liked in the industry, and Bob thought he’d be a perfect fit at Abt, and so convinced Lance to come work at the store (then located in Morton Grove). Lance has been with us ever since, repaying Bob’s trust with a loyalty that has kept him at the store well past midnight many nights. Ask him, why, and he’ll tell you: “Bob trusted me since day one. I closed the store with him three to five  times a week until 3am to make sure the store was ready for the next day. Bob taught me everything I had to know. If it weren’t for Bob, I wouldn’t be doing what i am doing today.”


Nearly all of our installers work in pairs of two, many spending so much time together that they become like brothers.

 And you’ll hear a similar story from Leslie, who’s been at Abt for 12 years now. She’d been a family friend of the Abts in her time before working here, and often found herself doing business with Abt. Years ago, Leslie’s life took an unfortunate turn, and she found herself looking for work. Her troubles came up in passing conversation with Bob, and he offered her a job on the spot, with a schedule that was flexible enough to accommodate caring for her two young boys. She started as a call-taker in electronics service, then moved to a position as a sales-assistant. Her work ethic in that position quickly impressed Bob, who insisted she become a full-fledged sales associate. The rest, as they say, is history, and today Leslie is a sales pro, helping customers interested in high-end kitchen appliances. Summing up her experience here, she says, “Abt and their business is one big family. Mr. Abt has touched each and every one of us in a different way.”


The store-wide Halloween contest pits departments against one another in pursuit of the coveted “Best Group Contest” award.

 As we close in on our 80th year in business, we look to celebrate all the things that make us great, for both our employees, as well as all of our loyal customers across the country. While we continue to explore the reasons each of us has chosen Abt, we also want to know why you do too. We appreciate each and every one of our customers, and continuously want to do good by you, eliminating what you don’t like and doubling down on what you do. So, we ask our customers: “Why Abt?” Please let us know! In a comment here or on Facebook, a Tweet, or a photo on Instagram. Include the hashtag #WhyAbt and we’ll collect and share your memories with the entire Abt family, all 1200 of us.


In Memoriam: Mr. Robert Abt

July 24th, 2015

“Keep a low profile and let what you do speak for yourself.” -Robert Abt 4/10/1938 – 7/23/2015


Delicious Recipes For Your Summer Festivities!

July 20th, 2015


Its that time of the year! Summer is the best time to have family and friends come together, enjoy the sun and cook some delicious foods. Abt is your headquarters for summer dining fun, offering all of the essential products for preparing everything from appealing appetizers to delicious desserts. Plus, we even posted some yummy recipes to try out for your next cook out!


Watermelon Ice Pops


Stay cool this summer with this refreshing treat! Not only are they delicious, but also very easy to make, thanks to just a few ingredients and the ingenious design of Zoku popsicle makers, which drastically cut down on time needed for your pops to freeze.



*Serves 6

  • 1 1/2 cup of seedless watermelon, cubed.
  • 2 Tbsp of plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp of agave nectar
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp of lemon juice


Using a blender, add watermelon and puree until smooth. This should take about 30 seconds. Then, grab a mesh sieve and strain the mixture into a bowl. Mix the greek yogurt, agave nectar and lemon juice into the watermelon mixture. Insert the popsicle sticks into your mold, and then fill your chilled Zoku mold with the mixture to the fill line. Wait about ten minutes, and enjoy your pops! (Of course, these tasty pops can also be made in a traditional popsicle mold. You’ll just need to wait a few hours for them to freeze.)

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Abt’s Outdoor Party Must-Haves!

July 16th, 2015

Planning on hosting the perfect outdoor extravaganza this summer? Let our must-have list for outdoor living and entertainment guide you to the most popular and essential products you’ll need to throw the backyard bash everyone will be talking about! We’ve picked out a few of our favorite backyard items that can create the perfect environment and the right entertainment for your future outdoor party guests.



Weber 22” Original Kettle Premium Black Charcoal Grill



When it comes to throwing any backyard shindig, the grill will always be the star of the show. With that kind of pressure, having a reliable grill isn’t just an option, it’s a necessity. The perfect solution for this pressure is the Weber Charcoal Grill. Charcoal grills offer better heat control, as well as the preferred and traditional method of grilling. Wow your party go-ers with the authentic BBQ flavor when grilling steaks, burgers, hot dogs and more, on a charcoal grill. Or add an extra twist, by using special flavored wood chunks, in addition to the charcoal. Your guests will keep coming back for more when they taste the extra smoky flavor. Shop Abt’s great deals on a wide variety of Weber Grills today, to really get your party started!


Klipsch Sandstone Outdoor Speaker



The next step on our list, which is often overlooked, is music. Whether you’re streaming your favorite party playlist, creating ambience, relaxing outside, or in need of movie audio playback, having speakers in your backyard is a must. By adding the Klipsch Outdoor Speaker, your backyard will deliver clean, clear sound, as well as amazing full-bodied bass during any occasion. Klipsch Sandstone Outdoor Speakers even offer a design that disguises them as rocks, making them blend in beautifully with any backyard landscape. Browse the selection of different colors, styles, and sizes of Outdoor Speakers sold right here at Abt.

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