By Claire Reilly

Just 10 days out from Christmas, retailers are seeing more and more consumers coming through their doors looking for the latest electronics, appliances and tech gadgets for Christmas stockings.

The perennial question is what the hottest products of the year will be. No doubt smartphones, tablets and computers will be big sellers, as will  entertainment products like MP3 players and docks, stereos and maybe even flat panel TVs.

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As retailers and consumers alike reflect on all the options, take a moment to think just how far we’ve come. If you walked into Dick Smith in 1982, your choices would have been much more limited. Forget MP3 players – computers with cassettes and walking stereos were the order of the day.

Mister Smith himself even talks about direct importing. Talk about ahead of the times.